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Wednesday, May 22, 2024 — Houston, TX

Hedgehopper program made simpler

By Maha Aziz     8/28/14 7:30pm

The Rice University Student Association has made changes to the existing Hedgehopper program, according to SA External Vice President Amritha Kanakamedala.

The change to the program was initiated in order to cut costs to participating businesses and make the Hedgehopper program easier and more efficient for students,” Kanakamedala, a Brown College junior, said. “The update is also to help recruit more businesses into the Hedgehopper program.”

Kanakamedala said students will no longer be issued a Hedgehopper card and that to use the discounts, students will only have to present their Rice ID to the restaurant.

“Last year we had many Hedgehopper cards left over, meaning many students did not pick up their Hedgehopper cards from their college coordinators at the beginning of the year,” Kanakamedala said. “In order to ensure that all Rice students have access to the Hedgehopper resource, we did away with the card and instead asked businesses to simply ask students for Rice IDs when issuing discounts.”

Baker College junior Victoria Eng said she believes discontinuing the Hedgehopper card is a positive change to the program.

“Now, students can go out and receive discounts without having to remember to bring it,” Eng said. “I think this will encourage more students to venture out and make an effort to visit some of the participating businesses.”

Businesses will now have a rolling, multi-year contract instead of a single-year contract, and businesses will no longer be required to pay a joining fee, Kanakamedala said.

“The new program has been received well by businesses,” Kanakamedala said. “Businesses who participated in the program in the past were happy to see the elimination of the joining fee.”

Students can now earn a reward for referring businesses to the Hedgehopper program, according to Kanakamedala.

“Students who refer businesses will receive a $10 gift card to Rice Coffeehouse once the business joins the Hedgehopper program,” Kanakamedala said. “We hope this will encourage students to refer their favorite businesses and to expand the program.”

Kanakamedala said since the Hedgehopper program is designed to encourage students to explore outside of the hedges, the SA hopes to expand the program and recruit more businesses.

“We always want students to explore outside the hedges, and with this new updated program, we believe that we can foster more of that,” Kanakamedala said. “We want students to see all that Houston has to offer, and more discounts means happier students.”

A list of participating businesses and their discounts are listed at http://sa.rice.edu/hedgehopper/.

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