Americans consume 400 million cups of coffee per day, making the United States the leading consumer of coffee in the world. College students make up a huge percent of this statistic. Nearly all college students are borderline surviving off the drink and Fitchburg State University is no exception. From coffee, to cappuccino, to espresso, they all give the sleep-deprived college student an extra boost of energy.
A recent informal survey of Fitchburg State students offers a snapshot of where the best cup of coffee is. Since coffee is such a prevalent college drink, we surveyed 75 Fitchburg State University students about what their favorite coffee shop is, what factors persuaded their choice, what time of the day they get their coffee, how many times a week they drink coffee, and how many people they go to a coffee shop with.
The consensus on coffee: Dunkin Donuts brews the best, but Gourmet Dounuts was not far behind; both had about 45 percent of the vote. Cumberland Farms and Dippin’ Donuts were far behind, both with votes in the single digits. Dunkin and Gourmet had very close numbers in likeability, but for different reasons: Dunkin Donuts is located near the campus, and Gourmet Donuts has a huge variety of flavors. the latter was important to Kelsey Whytock, who commented, “I would say I’m a Gourmet addict just because I prefer their coffee over any other coffee business in the area. They have cheap prices and about a million different flavors to choose from.”
When selecting the best place for coffee, about 40 percent of students surveyed said that quality was the main factor. About 20 percent said that price persuaded them, while 20 percent said it was location. A mere 10 percent said that service was a prime factor, and 10 percent said price, quality, location, and service were all equally important.
When it comes to the time of day most people get coffee, early morning (8 to 10 a.m.) is the most popular time with 40 percent of the votes. Early afternoon (1 to 3 p.m.) has 25 percent; 11 a.m. to noon has 20 percent; 4 to 6 p.m. has 15 percent; and a mere 5 percent go at all times. Several people overlapped in their answers also, by going for coffee at a variety of times throughout the same day. Students evidently need a jump-start in the morning and then possibly another jolt at some point in the day.
How often do the students in the survey go out for coffee? Well, 35 percent said that they go every day. Interestingly enough, the next largest group, at 25 percent, only goes once a week.
Most students surveyed seem to enjoy getting coffee with anyone and everyone; about 35 percent enjoy getting coffee with a friend or a group of people. “I usually go with my sorority sisters,” Casey Nordberg states, coffee in hand. “They are the ones who introduced it to me and it seems to be our personal tradition.”
On Fitchburg State University’s campus, coffee is not only addiction, but a tradition.