The University of New Hampshire admits that its new $17,570 dining hall table, which includes an illuminated top with adjustable LED lights, wasn't the best idea.
"This was wrong," said UNH Spokesperson Erika Mantz. "This was a mistake."
At lunchtime inside the newly renovated Holloway Commons Dining Hall, students can put their food down on a table that's worth more than a year of in-state tuition.
"That's pretty pathetic," said UNH sophomore Patrick Doyle.
The table does have a flashy LED light-up display on the tabletop, but still, many students are less than amused by the price tag.
"Seventeen thousand dollars is, like, ridiculous to spend on a table," said UNH freshman Shannon Bryant.
The astronomically-priced table seats 16 students.
"We have one of the highest tuition for in-state tuition so it's a little frustrating," Bryant said.
Mantz says the table was so expensive because it is custom built using recycled material from the old dining hall prior to renovations, has a programmable LED light display, and needed to be transported from the Midwest, "Where can you go to get a light-up, colored table," asked Sophomore Sean Brodeur. "You can't, this is unique to UNH."
Brodeur and his buddies sat at the table in protest of the negative backlash the school's getting over the purchase.
"My argument is the table is an art piece and there are all sorts of modern art these days made out of scraps that cost millions of dollars," said UNH sophomore Matthew Johnston.
Mantz says the concept was to create spot for culinary demonstrations that doubled as a dining hall table. The price tag, she says, was not part of the plan.
"A full review is underway to determine how this happened and how we can prevent it from happening again in the future," Mantz said.
Despite the buyer's remorse, there are no returns. So, good for Brodeur and Johnston, the table's here to stay.
"I think it's awesome," said Brodeur.