- Category: Volume 87 (Fall 2015 - Spring 2016)
- Published: 23 September 2015
- Written by KERRY BREEN | STAFF WRITER
For most students, the University offers a wide variety of dining options. The Rebecca Stafford Student Center (RSSC) has a food court and a Dunkin’ Donuts; the Magill Commons Dining Hall offers food in an all-you-can-eat style, and there are grab-and-go eateries scattered around campus as well, such as in Bey Hall and the Murry and Leonie Guggenheim Library. The convenience store also offers a variety of pre-packaged meals and snacks. For those who crave late-night snacks, there is always Shadows, found outside of Elmwood Hall.
However, for those who follow a vegan or vegetarian diet, or suffer from certain digestive conditions, eating away from home can be a difficult process, even with all of the options around.
Even in those cases, the University does its best to offer a wide variety of alternative options for those who need them.
This year, the University changed their dining service to Gourmet Dining, which has led to some additional changes in the options offered. The layout of the RSSC has also been altered, as have the food options available.
The most noticeable change was the removal of Grilleworks; however, the menu items remain available and can now be found in the food court. Grilleworks has since been replaced with Dunkin’ Donuts.
Maria Padaliano, a sophomore English education major, suffers from a digestive disorder called gastroparesis which, according to the Mayo Clinic, is a condition in which the spontaneous movement of the muscles in a person’s stomach do not function normally. As a result, her diet can be difficult to maintain.
“I can’t eat most meat, because of the condition,” she says. “I’m basically a vegetarian – sometimes I can have plain chicken, but that’s it. I can’t eat anything fried; and I can’t eat anything with a lot of cheese. Even salad is hard to handle most of the time.”
Padaliano adds, “But even still, the dining hall has a good selection. I can eat a lot of what they have – rice, cooked vegetables; usually their vegan station has some pretty good options. It’s not always the easiest, but I always do find something to eat.”
The dining hall also offers a wide variety of options for those who are vegans and vegetarians.
Aside from an extensive salad bar and several other options that change daily, such as cooked vegetables and seafood and sushi options, a vegan station has been recently implemented. Every day, there is a different meal available.
Gourmet Dining also labels their food, letting students know if there is an ingredient such as gluten or dairy in each dish. For those who are lactose intolerant or suffer from a celiac disorder, these notices can be a huge help, but they are also helpful for those that are pursuing certain diets.
“The food here is pretty good,” continues Padaliano. “And the fact that they label everything is helpful. It’s still a challenge sometimes, to find something that I can eat and that I want to eat. But most of the time, I’m able to do it.”
“We have a lot of different options,” says dining hall supervisor Tammy Church. “We also have a nutritionist on board, and we work very closely with her, along with our executive chefs and everyone else. We also work with all the kids on campus, to find out what we could be doing better.”
“We keep everything very separate, even when we’re cooking it, so students don’t have to worry about their food being contaminated. We keep a close eye on everything, and we keep track of student allergies. We go above and beyond for our students.”
No matter how complicated an allergy may be, the dining hall, along with the other eateries on campus, is certainly capable of providing for it, meaning that students are always able to find something to eat.
PHOTO TAKEN from muscleandfitness.com