Students Get Excited About Food
I received a leadership scholarship this year that required me to plan and implement a project for the Dominican community. Naturally, my first reaction was to plan an event focused around food and nutrition.
I tried to think of an event that would draw a lot of participation and educate students about an important issue. Finally, I settled on a movie night. I organized two events and invited nutrition professors and students to be on a panel and answer questions from the audience.
The first event went well. We watched the movie Food, Inc. which exposes our country’s food system for what it is—a failing, unsustainable system that provides cheap, unhealthy and even harmful food to our population at a growing cost. If you have not seen the movie, I encourage you to watch it. It is very eye-opening and somewhat disturbing but it covers a wide range of issues and it is important for us as consumers to know where our food comes from.
I think my audience was a little shocked by the movie because the panel discussion was short and only a few people raised questions but overall the event was a success.
My second event went even better. I had almost 60 attendees and we had a lively discussion after the movie Fresh. We discussed the food here and brainstormed ways to encourage our foodservice company to improve the quality of the food they offer. It was wonderful to see so many students who were passionate about making changes and willing to put in the effort to get there. We discussed having an open forum with our foodservice manager and, as students, demand to be offered healthy, local food.
For years, Dining Services told us that they would make changes to the food offered but the students here simply don’t care. This event proved them wrong.
I am optimistic about the changes that can take place in the next few years. My dream is that the dining hall will start to offer local and organic options, more vegetables and higher quality food. If the students here prove that they care, I believe these changes can happen.