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GFF College Dining Survey Responses

University of Alabama



Survey Date:

Oct 13, 2019

Survey 1 of 1




Celiac Disease

Student's Summary Assessment:

College Dining:


Surrounding Area:


Rationale for Grades Given

React at least once a week if I eat something other than food off the salad bar. Am told things are gluten free when they are not. Don’t listen to suggestions. Very few options. Very expensive and extremely frustrating. The school’s dining halls are worse in my experience

Frutta bowls, tropical smoothie, chipotle, Jim and nicks, central Mesa, real and rosemary. The five, heat pizza, baked bear,heat pizza

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?

Not at all what I expected

Have you had a reation from eating in your dining hall?


If Yes, describe each incident and how your school responded

I didn’t tell the school’s dining hall after being glutened because the employees don’t seem to care or understand what gluten is. My sorority house gave me a discount, but I’m forced to be on the meal plan and can’t opt out.

Did you register your food restriction with the disabilities office? If yes, describe

No, but i met with a director of the dining hall and I met with the chef at my sorority house several times freshmen year to voice my concerns

Are there resources to help with nutritious, safe dining (e.g. dietician)? If yes, describe

The are nutritionists, but they have no effect on what food is available to me.

If you were in charge of dining, what would you change? Would your school be open to suggestions?

I don’t think the school would make big enough changes. There are other people with celiac I talked to and they’ve been glutened several times at the school and sorority house. I would overhaul the system they have completely, add more options, and hire people who will actually follow allergy training.

Describe your biggest challenge managing your food restrictions at college and how you deal with it

There is little understanding about celiac, allergies, how to prepare food for people with allergies. All I feel safe eating is salad, and no matter what I do or suggest nothing is changed.

Advice for Incoming Students:


Did your food restrictions impact your housing decisions?  Any dorm recommendations

I would stay in a suite style dorm because there are kitchenettes so you can cook for yourself so you feel safe eating.

Dining Halls:

Any advice for managing dining halls?  Favorite dining halls? Any to avoid?

Lakeside will tell you their allergy station is gluten free. However, it isn’t often open, there is only one dish per day, and I have been glutened there before.

Meal Plans:

Describe your meal plans over the year(s). What's mandatory? Any suggestions? 

sorority house meal plan through college chefs


Any advice for eating in the dorms? Favorite snacks? Places that deliver? 

Frutta bowls, chipotle, Zoe’s, tropical smoothie cafe, blaze pizza, heat pizza, the five, central Mesa, and Jim n nicks are great for celiac if you explain the condition. I mircrowave a lot of oatmeal, veggies, and rice if I need a meal in my dorm.

Getting Started:

What should students do before school starts or when they first arrive?

Make sure to talk with your parents about needing to budget to buy a lot of snacks and food to have in your dorm. If you are extremely sensitive to gluten, be very careful of the dining halls because they say they will accommodate you, but me and other celiacs have gotten sick. If you’re joining a Greek meal plan, many won’t let you off the meal plan and are not accommodating. There are salad bars but most of the time that’s all you can eat.


Advice on managing parties or dinners out with friends?

Bring your own. Do your research.


Any other advice or comments?

I love Alabama, but to be completely honest with you the situation for celiac is not good. Be prepared to eat a lot of salads and buy yourself a lot of food. Don’t trust when people in the dining halls say something is gluten free because there seems to be a lot of issues with cross contamination.

Meal Plans:

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