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Advocating for inclusive, safe dining for college students with food restrictions
GFF College Dining Survey Responses
Dec 15, 2019
Survey 1 of 1
Student's Summary Assessment:
Rationale for Grades Given
Do not have a designated area for gluten free "hot food". Has a small fridge with Amy's prepackaged gluten free food and a microwave for gluten free. But does not ensure no cross contamination on eggs for example in the morning. Have gotten sick most likely due to cross contamination during breakfast time.
Bistro 63, 110 grill, whole foods
Details About this Student's Food Restrictions
How many years ago were you diagnosed with food allergies or celiac disease?
If you indicated celiac or gluten intolerance, how sensitive are you to gluten?
["Extremely: React to even small traces"]
Add details to help us better understand your food restrictions (e.g. sensitivity level, potential reaction, need for EPI pen)
Completed original celiac survey which did not ask about other food allergies
Details About this Student's College Dining Experience
Does your college handle food restrictions as you expected when you decided to attend?
Mostly not what I expected
Have you had a reation from eating in your dining hall?
If Yes, describe each incident and how your school responded
Did you register your food restriction with the disabilities office? If yes, describe
Yes, provided documentation of celiac to accommodations office.
Are there resources to help with nutritious, safe dining (e.g. dietician)? If yes, describe
There is a nutritionist, but even she admits that the school does not have a good system for celiac students, and cannot guarantee no cross contamination.
If you were in charge of dining, what would you change? Would your school be open to suggestions?
I would add a section to the dining hall that had things like hot gluten free pasta, sushi, gluten free sandwiches, etc. There should be a part of the drining hall that has a variety of gluten free and other allergen free hot foods. These foods should be prepared in their own space as well.
Describe your biggest challenge managing your food restrictions at college and how you deal with it
The lack of variety and lack of healthy options that are guaranteed to not be cross contaminated
Advice for Incoming Students:
Did your food restrictions impact your housing decisions? Any dorm recommendations
I asked the accommodations officer for housing with a kitchen, but they did not provide me with that. The freshman dorm I live in only has a microwave, no stove top.
Any advice for managing dining halls? Favorite dining halls? Any to avoid?
Get to know the people serving the food and they will grab you some hot food that was not put on the line yet. While incomvient, this is the only way to make sure you dont get glutenized
Describe your meal plans over the year(s). What's mandatory? Any suggestions?
Unlimited swipes into dining hall
Any advice for eating in the dorms? Favorite snacks? Places that deliver?
You really need to have a car on campus. Get from whole foods, pulse cafe, have plenty of GF protein bars and snacks in your dorm.
What should students do before school starts or when they first arrive?
Buy lots of snacks, get accommodations for a car.
Advice on managing parties or dinners out with friends?
Just stay strong and tell people that you have celiac and cannot drink beer.
Any other advice or comments?
The dining hall staff is very nice!! They are wonderful people but the dining hall system they are a part of does not provide them with the setup they need to ensure a convenient, safe, and enjoyable dining hall experience for celiac students. Again, there really needs to be a hot food section dedicated to making food for people with allergies who get sick when food is cross contaminated. The lack of variety is also one of the biggest problems. It's also a very bad sign if the school feels that they need to have a little fridge with gluten free TV type dinners for celiac students.
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