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What do you want for dinner?

Food on and around campus

Food is one of life’s most basic necessities. For students attending the University of New Mexico, the campus and surrounding areas offer different dining options.

UNM has one dining hall, La Posada (LaPo), located in the residence area of campus. There are also four on-campus markets, located in the Student Union Building (SUB), Student Residence Center Commons, Dane Smith Hall and the UNM Bookstore.

Angel Baca, Student Success Leader for the Associated Students at UNM’s Emerging Lobo Leaders and spring 2024 graduate, shared his advice for incoming students who will dine on campus.

“My campus secret is to be super nice to the (SUB market) and LaPo workers because they will be your best friends and help you out,” Baca said.

LaPo is the main food hub for students, but places like the SUB, the Collaborative Teaching and Learning Building and Zimmerman Library also have fast food options.

To save time, Baca uses the kiosk in the SUB when he orders food there, he said.

“No one really knows about it, so I get to skip the wait and they are open to anyone,” Baca said.

The SUB also houses the Campus Lobo Food Pantry, which offers free food to all enrolled UNM students with a valid Lobo ID. Students can drop by to grab a quick snack before class or their groceries for the week – limited to a full basket once per day.

Some departments also have their own food pantries or communal cupboards, according to Sarita Cargas, an associate professor at the Honors College. Her advice: reach out to a department’s front desk to check.

New this year, the LoboEats app helps students find free food on campus. Conceived by a team led by Cargas and created by UNM Computer Science alumni Biraj Silwal, users receive notifications when leftover food from events is available.

The app aims to help students facing food insecurity while reducing food waste.

A partnership with Aramark Collegiate Hospitality starting July 1 will bring food delivery robots and GrubHub to campus, according to Amanda Gerard, UNM manager of Institutional Support Services.

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Off campus, stores such as Walgreens and Smiths have locations nearby.

Main streets near campus, like Central Ave. and Lomas Blvd., host multiple chain and local food options. Frontier Restaurant, right across from the Fine Arts & Design Library, is one of the most accessible off-campus food options.

Some restaurants in the area, like Cheba Hut and Los Victor’s Mexican Food on Central Ave., offer student discounts on certain days for those with UNM IDs.

Marcela Johnson is a beat reporter for the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @DailyLobo.

Marcela Johnson

 Marcela Johnson is a freelance reporter for the Daily Lobo, and the editor-in-chief of Limina: UNM Nonfiction Review.  

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