Monday, August 20, 2012

Looking Back at PSU

Nice view of a green mountain
Looking back at my time at PSU I would like to offer some insight to future interns of the school.

First ,having a car is a very good idea if you like to see the sights and if you would like to go anywhere outside of walking distance ,as there is not public transportation, other than the Concord Lines bus to Boston and Manchester for about $40.00 round trip.

Second, be prepared to work without much guidance from the other managers there. Our preceptor was helpful, but working with everyone else, you had to bring your own questions and peruse them to teach you things. Also be prepared to work without a structured outline of your time. It is good if you have strong time management skills and need little to no help with projects.

Also try and schedule the field trips as EARLY as possible. I had trouble getting in touch with a few of the sites and it came down to the wire with one of them, booking it only 3 days before the end of the internship.

Over all try and research the schools you are interested in and connect with the people who were interns before you. It is good to see how that school will benefit you and your vision for your career path.

Take Care and good luck future interns!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Week 10: Northern Michigan University

The second to last week of my internship was chock full of CBORD. I mostly worked on getting the food items cleaned up so MyMenu (aka NetNutrition) looked the best it could. We already have two full menus up, and are working on getting the menus up for the Wildcat Den and the Marketplace. The two menus that are up are cash-ops, and because their menus are significantly smaller, it was a much easier task to get all the nutritional information into CBORD for them.
My desk, AKA where all the CBORD action happens!

One of my final projects will be to decorate a display case advertising MyMenu so we can generate interest in the program as soon as the students return to NMU. This is both exciting and scary. It’s exciting to see all the work of the summer finally coming together, but it makes me nervous to see our deadline fast approaching. I have full confidence that we can get the majority of the menu onto MyMenu by the end of August though!
A preview of MyMenu--such a great feeling to see the menu coming together!

During the week I also was working on pages for the new NMU Dining Website. My last page was the wellness page, which is meant to be a page with many resources that Robin and I deemed credible. I generated a list of local restaurants that serve both gluten-free and vegan entrees, and contacted them to ask permission for us to post their restaurant advertising their specialty menus. All of the restaurants were extremely receptive and welcomed the opportunity for free publicity. One of the restaurants in particular, Rock River Café, sounded particularly delicious and I decided on Friday to visit the small town of Chatham, MI to eat some homemade gluten-free and vegan fare. While in Chatham, I also stumbled upon the county fair! It was a great experience and I wish I would have visited sooner than my last weekend in Marquette.  Unfortunately, since we opted to check out the fair first, Rock River Cafe was closed when we returned for our dinner. It was still a successful trip though! 

Friday, August 3, 2012

Farewell to Yale! Week 7 and 8

Our time at Yale has come to an end and we are truly sad to say goodbye to Yale Dining and the staff.  The last eight weeks have been filled with learning, fun, laughter, travel, food, and new experiences.  Week 7 and 8 were very busy and we thought the best way to show some of our favourite memories were through pictures. 

Thanks to Yale Dining for being such AMAZING hosts during our summer....we loved every second of it! :)
We hope our fellow interns had a great summer and we wish you all the best in the future.

Lee's first Coach purchase!
Shopping at a nearby outlet mall.

"Quality Control" at KBT Cafe :)

Lee's birthday door!

Picked out fresh lobster from the harbor
and cooked it ourselves!


Spending a great day shadowing Meg, manager
at Silliman Dining Hall

Jeanette, Deputy Director of Yale Dining

Rafi, Executive Director

Ron, Director of Culinary Excellence and Quality Assurance

Gerry, Purchasing and Sustainability Director

Coffee from Thain Cafe
Baking on a rainy day!
Pumpkin Cookies
with Spiced Frosting

Goodbye Yale! We had a great summer!

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Week 9: Northern Michigan University

The week of the NACUFS Picnic was immensely busy, and I spent most of my time in the kitchens doing prep work. I had decided that I wanted to work with Kathy, a chef, to cook most of the food ourselves. So, we started on Tuesday by pulling the frozen chicken, salmon, and laying out the tofu to drain. I also made a TON of cheesecakes from scratch! Some of them were a little more pretty than others, but they all turned out to be delicious.

On Wednesday, I really got to cooking, and I started making the dips. There was tzatziki, edamame hummus, and garlic hummus that I was planning on making from scratch. I was a little pressed for time, as Kathy had the day off, so Robin and Billy luckily volunteered to help me out. I also made my gluten-free chocolate chip cookies from scratch, and let some of the chefs sample!

Thursday, the BIG DAY! I couldn’t believe it was finally here! I probably looked crazy, as I was running around all day preparing food, packing decorations, gathering dishes, and just plain freaking out as the deadline approached. I had so much help from the chefs though, and mostly everything went smoothly. There was a small slip-up, as one of the chefs spilled all of the freshly made raspberry coulis for the cheesecakes. It was sad to see such delicious toppings all over the floor, but luckily we found a great substitute in storage.

Coconut Rice Pudding
The main table set-up
The picnic itself was awesome. The food was delicious, and one of the many people I’ve met throughout the summer, Steve, even brought games for everyone! I could not have asked for a better day weather-wise, and people seemed to enjoy the fact that the entire menu was gluten-free when I announced it. I was exhausted by the end of the night, and took Friday off from work. 

Blueberry Mint Lemonade and Cucumber Water--very refreshing!

One of the Beautiful roses we had at the picnic!

Week 8: Northern Michigan University

Week 8 proved to be exceptionally busy with the picnic approaching, as well as the end of the summer. Most of my efforts were directed towards planning and meeting with various staff about the picnic. I addressed and sent out all of the invitations on Monday and Tuesday. I met with a few chefs to review my menu and insure I would have enough food. After the menu was finalized and approved, I had to make up a grocery list to order so that the food would arrive by Monday (to be on the safe side). The kitchens already had about half of the ingredients I needed, but I still ended up ordering quite a bit of food.

Before I sent in the order to our prime vendor, I got in contact with the local food co-op because they have a Hoop House that grows vegetables. I was able to get all the cucumbers, basil, and green peppers that I needed for my recipes from the hoop house, which was a great way to support local agriculture.

After the food was ordered, I had to pick out dinnerware and go over decorations. I hadn’t even considered decorations at this point, so luckily Sally, a veteran caterer, had some suggestions for my picnic. I decided to keep everything simple, so I didn’t need to pick out too many decorations.

On Thursday, I had yet another diet consult, and Robin again encouraged me to educate the patient. It was another diabetes patient, so I had the hang of explaining the disease by then, but it was just as rewarding as the first time. I also made Rice Noodles again! 

On Friday, I was had a tour of the Marquette General Health System, which is the local hospital in Marquette. I had the opportunity to shadow four different dietitians who all work there. The first dietitian worked in the inpatient area, and we saw several patients with different dietary needs. The second dietitian worked in the clinical pediatric department. She showed me a few of the more interesting cases she’s had in the past two years, and her main point was to show me that no two cases in pediatric dietetics are the same. The third dietitian I shadowed was also a certified diabetes educator, so I learned the extent of her job and how she interacts with the doctors in the hospital. And the fourth dietitian I shadowed was in charge of all the operations in the kitchen.

The day spent at MGHS was very interesting and educational. The most exciting part of the tour was seeing firsthand just how versatile a dietitian’s role can be, depending on what area they choose to work in. 

Week 6/7: Northern Michigan University

During the week of July 4th, not much was going on in the office between vacation days and staggered scheduling. I enjoyed the holiday in Marquette, and saw the parade in town. 

The next week however, was not so slow. I was extremely busy planning for the NACUFS Picnic, which is on July 26th. The date has really come fast, and I can’t wait to host the picnic. The marketing coordinator for dining helped me design an invitation, and we sent in the order for the invites to printing services.

While the office was busy, the kitchens were rather empty, so I took the opportunity to do some testing for gluten-free and vegan recipes. I made a carrot cake using coconut flour and homemade cream cheese icing. Hopefully NMU can use the new recipe during the school year.

Later in the week, Robin and I had a diet consult with a patient experiencing insulin resistance, or Type 2 Diabetes. It was rewarding to be able to meet with the patient and offer her advice on changes to her diet that would ultimately make her better. Robin gave me the opportunity to explain some of what Type 2 Diabetes does to the body, and it was a great teaching experience.

Over the weekend, Robin and I went on three farm tours. Two of the farms grew flowers, and were so gorgeous. The third farm we went to was a huge vegetable and chicken farm. It looked like a ton of work, and I was thankful to not be a farmer during those hot days. We got some free produce and enjoyed our fresh dinner. 

University of Northern Iowa (UNI) Week 8 plus a few days

Monday, July 23 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Two days from my event, tomorrow I am going to Ames, IA, so today is my last full day to prep for the event.  There are only minor details that I need to attend to.  Sunday, I prepared the pictures, and captions that I needed to print, so I spent most of my morning doing this. 
            Afterwards, I had to go around UNI to collect some items that I needed for my event, such as a projector, projection screen, and the international flags display set.  Afterwards, I went Wal-Mart to pick up some spray paint.  Then, I went back to my apartment to start cutting out some of the pictures that I reprinted and the captions.
            I bought spray paint, because I spent two hours on Sunday trying to get my balloon Olympic Rings to look right.  I eventually gave up after blowing up forty balloons, which turned out to be a huge waste of time.  Now, I have a new idea, spray-painting the hula-hoops to match the Olympic Rings.  Have you ever spray painted in 102-degree heat with tons of humidity?  It does not really work.  I had to spray the hoops outside, leave them sit for an hour (I do not know what that actually did), and then bring them back in to dry.  I could hear my neighbor when they walked by my door, “Geez, it really smells like spray paint.”  Whoops!
            After lunch, I taped the pictures to their captions.  I hope someone reads them, because it took forever.  My favorite one is a picture of St. Louis, and it says a metropolitan city in the United States located in the state of Missouri and home of the best baseball team in the world.  Go Cardinals!
            I organized all my decorations into bags with their venue names.  I feel like I am ready to go.  The only thing I have left is to assemble the hula-hoops into the Olympic Rings formation and make some more tissue paper torches. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Today, my internship director and I toured Iowa State University.  She told me that this college is a land grant school, which is awesome because I have never heard/paid attention to that term outside of my classrooms!  The campus is very spread out, but it does not feel separated.  They have many convenience stores, cafés, and restaurants located around campus In addition they have three dining centers that have buffet style dining.  Their purchasing for food service is unique compared to the purchasing at UNI. 
            We walked into a large warehouse for food.  It looked like a Sam’s Club grocery store.  It even had bar codes where items were placed to easily keep track of inventory electronically.  They do not have a contract with a prime vendor like UNI.  UNI’s prime vendor is Martin Brothers.  ISU bids for  their pricing on almost every item.  It seems very time consuming, but I guarantee they probably get the best price.  The large warehouse may pose a problem since they must maintain a space that can house all that food including freezer/refrigeration items.  Why not order directly from a food company like Martin Brothers?  Managers can utilize the space for other things.  However, they may not receive the best prices and/or have to predetermine the counts and amounts needed for recipes more accurately, since the access of food would no longer be on site. 
            Next, the Iowa State intern took us on a tour of the campus.  We walked to one of the campus cafés the Hub Grill & Café.  It has a central location near the library that serves meals and snacks including kits and bakery items.  Caribou Coffee is located inside the Hub that offers customers a wider variety of items to chose from.
            We met the food director at the Hub, and she took us to the library where they have a small café.  The library was very beautiful.  On the first floor there is a hidden café that does really well.  Bookends Café offers Roasterie coffees, espressos, Jet Tea smoothies, hot cocoa, and fresh bakery items.  In addition, they sell kits.  If you are deep into your studies and want to grab a quick bite or need some coffee to wake you up this hidden café in the library is the perfect place to go.
            We toured other c-stores on campus and the dining halls including the Memorial Union Food Court, Union Drive Marketplace, and Memorial Union Market and Café.  In addition, we saw the Sports Club restaurant, which is a neat concept to have at the college level where so many people are interested in the big name sports games without the chaos of the local bars. For lunch we ate at the Marketplace.  Today the soy company was coming, so there were many soy featured items on today’s menu.  I tried a stir-fry made with tofu.   
            After lunch, we went to Hawthorn Market & Café.  It was a nice cozy atmosphere with couches, fireplaces, and large televisions.  The café prepares made to order meals such as grilled burgers, toasted deli sandwiches, pizzas, etc.  The cool thing about this location is you order from a kiosk.  In addition to the full menu, this is the only place on campus that you can purchase Starbucks coffee.  On the market side of things, this place offers convenience items and fresh produce.
            Lastly, we toured State Gym including the Froots venue.  Froots is a franchise brand that sells healthy grab and go meals and all-natural smoothies.  The gym was amazing.  There was something for everyone in that gym.  A person could sit in the 25-person hot tub and watch TV or cross-train on the aerobics machines.  There is so many things that you could do at this gym, it made me want to enroll at Iowa State just to have access.  I mean seriously there was a boxing arena!
            Here is the catch of the day; someone called me at 8:30 AM to tell me that my special event day got changed to Thursday!!!! It did not really bother me, but now I can’t go on one of my tours L
Wednesday, July 25, 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Today was supposed to be my special event day; however, there was a mix up with the days and the 600+ football players will not be showing up until Thursday.  At least now, I get to prep the food for my special event.
            First, we started by making Cuban sandwiches.  Cuban sandwiches have ham, salami, roasted pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, and mustard on a hoagie bun.  These will be placed in the oven tomorrow. 
            Next, I watched one of the cooks prepare the ziti Alfredo bake for tomorrow’s production.  We taste tested a portion of the recipe, and it was delicious!
            Onto the romaine lettuce for the Greek salad, there was so many lettuce heads to chop!  I don’t know how we will go through all this lettuce, but the cooks assure me that we will. 
            For a day’s hard work, we were treated to pork fritters, fries, and fruit salad.  Afterwards, we had a lot of dishes to do.  My hands may still be raw tomorrow.
            One of the managers and I decided that we should prepare the soft serve ice cream for tomorrow.  First, we cleaned out the chocolate ice cream.  We definitely could not save the ice cream, since we put it in a cleaned out pickle bucket.  Can you ever get the smell of pickle out of a pickle bucket?   Afterwards, we prepared the new product of ice cream.  They have never used a product like this one.  There was a dry mix and you mix it with water to create a dairy-free ice cream.  In addition, you can add flavoring to it.  We decided to add sherbet flavoring, so the ice cream would be orange.  Lastly, we dyed the vanilla ice cream yellow.  Whenever you get a sherbet-vanilla twist cone, it looks like an Olympic torch! 
DAY 35: SPECIAL EVENT: RialtOlympics
Thursday, July 26, 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Up and ready to be at Rialto at 7am!  I walked in to find the 600 football players eating breakfast.  It was unbelievable how many people were in.  What a nice way to settle my nerves for the event!  Every day starts with a balanced breakfast; it was bacon, eggs, and fruit for me.
            After breakfast, I started loading in my materials/decorations.  Next, I started to hang up my decorations.  I placed the small banners on the greeter stations.  Then, I went to S’mores and began taping the pictures and their captions on the glass at the venue.  Talk about taking forever to roll the tape.  I am glad I had three other people to help me do this to every venue.  I finished the venue by taping the international flags banner to the counter top.  It looked awesome with all the Olympian pictures and cool places to visit around the world.  We served red, white, and blue iced chocolate and vanilla cupcakes and Olympic torch ice cream out of this venue for the event.
            Moving onto Cornucopia, where Great Britain, the official location of the Olympics, was being represented.  Cornucopia had pictures plastered all over the glass and tables, my favorite picture was Queen Elizabeth II.  We served Shepherd’s Pie and pea pods and carrots out of the venue today.  One of the managers came over to see if I needed help, and I told him to grab a ladder and hang up all my flags.  I hate ladders, and he did it 100x better than I ever could have done. 
            A student worker began helping me at this point, and she decorated Emiliano’s for me. We represented China here.  For lunch, there were spring rolls, rice, and sweet and sour chicken with stir-fry.  My favorite decoration at this venue was the paper fans that we bought from Oriental Trading. 
            The next venue is Sparks where USA was represented.  We served hamburgers, hotdogs, and French fries.  There were streamers, flags, garland, and window clings to show our American spirit.  In addition to that food, we served Cuban sandwiches.  Originally, I wanted to serve the Cubans out of Colby’s, but they needed to be grilled.  It was easier to keep them at Sparks. 
            The next venue that we decorated was Colby’s.  Colby’s had three countries that it represented: India, Cuba, and Jamaica.  All of the venues had flag banners and pictures with captions from their countries.  At the first table, we served an Indian Cran-Raspberry Glazed Chicken Salad on a Croissant Roll.  The next table we served made to order sandwiches.  At the soup station, we served Jamaican Tortilla Soup. 
            I decorated Pasta Cucina with Italian pictures and symbols.  We chose to serve a Baked Ziti Alfredo with Italian garlic bread.  The pasta went really well at lunch, so well in fact, we ran out.  We decorated the other half of the venue, the salad bar, as Greece.  We placed pictures of landmarks in Greece on the tables.  In addition, we put a green-leafed table runner on the shelves at the venue with fake grapes sitting on top of the runner.  There was a Greek salad served at this venue along with vegetable and fruit trays.
            The last venue was Formaggio.  We served Mexican taco pizza and Greek pizza.  The food went really well, we had to make more pizzas than we originally planned, but this was much easier to accomplish than the ziti bake.  There were pictures of places in Mexico placed at this venue along with a piñata. 
            After decorating the venues, I needed to set up for my games.  The vertical jump game was not staying attached to the wall, so we decided to take it down.  The discus throw required us to move the outdoor tables, which were bolted to the ground (I guess I should have looked more carefully at those details).  We decided to incorporate both the discus throw and the javelin throw into the same game.  Throw the objects through the Olympic rings (hula-hoops) for a certain amount of points.  Two boys set up the tables in the meeting room for Jeopardy!  I was not impressed with the turn out of the people who played games.  I think that I should have advertised it better.  We would have had a better turn out with the games if they were inside.  There was so much going on at once that it did not bother me that the games had not went as planned. 
            There were just here and there decorations that we added before service began.  I had two of the student workers make small nametags for the food items, since I had forgotten to do this.  Others hung up a large sign and hung a replica of the Olympic Rings on the back wall.  Someone said, “Ready to get slammed?”  Then an hour and a half later, we were taking down the decorations and cleaning up the place. 
            Wow!  The meal was great.  It went as planned.  The football team enjoyed the food.  They were standing in line, and I tried to get them to disperse, but it never worked for more than five minutes.  If I could change one thing about the event is to advertise more about the games.  I spent a lot of time preparing for the games, and only a few people played them.  Overall, the event was a success.
Friday, July 27, 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Today, I worked with my internship director on finishing the nutrition module and purchasing module.  In addition, I was casted for a training video at Fresh Beginnings.  My internship director is both the purchasing manager and the dietitian at UNI, so she has a large role here at the university. 
            The first thing that we did was reviewed recipes for updates and ingredient statement information needed.  Sometimes items change ingredients or Martin Brothers discontinues a product and begins selling a similar product.  These items need to be updated in FoodPro and Food Processor in order to display the proper ingredients.  Martin Brothers will notify my director about the changes, and she will copy and paste the ingredients list from the internet into FoodPro and/or Food Processor.  After she explained how to update the ingredients, we entered an ingredient statement from the distributor. 
            Next, we discussed her role as a purchasing manager at UNI.  There are two different ways a food service can purchase food, through prime vending as UNI does with Martin Bros or by bidding each item and purchasing them in bulk.  Purchasing in bulk may create cheaper pricing, but the college or university must turn their storage spaces into food warehouses.  Food Store Areas must be as large as what they are wanting to store.  UNI only stocks the necessities for what they will need in the near future.  Iowa State purchases their items in bulk; it may be an entire year before they use an item in their warehouse if it is extremely nonperishable.
            The purchasing procedures determine the need of the product.  The purchasing manager created a policy on adding new items.  Food shows, manufacturer visits, customer requests, etc. are just a few ways that items are identified.  Sampling of the product may or may not be necessary for its purchase; however, it would aid in the process of selecting new products.  Factors and/or specifications are considered and developed when selecting a new product.  The cost, delivery, standards, nutritional values, and locality are a few factors the purchasing manager will consider. 
            Specifications of products are the standards that someone creates to establish the type of quality, in which they are looking for.  Sometimes products are not meeting to the specifications or standards that are set.  If this is true, the purchasing manager can e-mail the company with their issues and concerns about their products or services. 
            Next, we discussed the considerations when determining whether or not to make or buy a product.  There are many factors to consider.  The biggest and most obvious is the labor cost versus the purchased cost.  For example, it may be more cost efficient to purchase broccoli florets since you end up throwing away the stem, it takes time, and time is money to cut the broccoli, and having the additional attached stems is more storage space.  
            Afterwards, we discussed the different types of bids.  As I stated before, there can be prime vendors or a person can bid on items individually.  In addition, bids can be consolidated with other organizations to obtain better pricing on the item.  However, bids are not just about the pricing of the item; they have criteria based on quality, delivery, negotiation, locality, business ethics, etc.  
            Locality at UNI is a largely awarded criteria on bids.  There are three types of local purchasing at UNI: 1) within the county, 2) within the six surrounding counties, and 3) in a 250-mile radius.  UNI purchases honey, dairy, meats, etc. locally, but cannot purchase items such as oranges since they do not grow well in Iowa’s climate.  My director said that she would purchase a local item up to 33% higher than the nonlocal competitor item.
            Right now, UNI is bidding on uniforms, so it was interesting to see how this falls into line with what my director and I were discussing.
            Before I finished my day, I had to act in a training video.  I demonstrated the single bucket method of mopping.  In addition, I was casted as the commentator for the information that will be used in the video.  There is additional footage that will be shot later next week.
Monday, July 30, 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Today, my internship director, a kitchen helper from Fresh Beginnings, and I toured Martin Brothers distributing plant and Grinnell College.  Martin Brothers is UNI prime vendor for their foodservices.  We toured Grinnell College to compare and contrast our foodservice facilities. 
            Martin Brothers is a family-owned and operated distributor that delivers items to foodservice operations.  The person giving us the tour said that they were a Midwest distributor that served Iowa along with seven of its surrounding states.  Martin Bros. has a large warehouse that is subdivided into dry, refrigerated, and freezer compartments.  The operation is run 24/7, and they use energy efficient loaders in their company.  Martin Bros. created an alpha-numerical system that allows the employees to find the products quickly and without confusion.  The plant looked like Lowes Department store with boxes of food stacked up to the extremely high ceilings.  It would take a large forklift to retrieve some of the items on the top shelves.  It was a very fast tour, and I wish that I would have brought a coat.  We walked into the largest refrigeration compartment of the building that I have ever seen, and it was freezing.  I opted not to go into the coolers. 
            Afterwards, we headed to Grinnell, Iowa, to visit the Grinnell College.  We were early to Grinnell, so we went into two grocery stores in town to pass the time.  The first was a health store.  It sold many specialty products.  My internship director purchased a strange item that I have never heard of that had quinoa in it (I have heard of quinoa, but that was the only ingredient that I remember).  Next, we went to a local grocery store.  We looked at the local wines, there is not a lot of wines that come out of Iowa. 
            Now, it was time to head to Grinnell College.  Grinnell College is a private liberal arts and sciences four-year residential institute where students build their own major/emphasis.  This school is very small; they only have 1600 students.  The person giving the tour said that this school competes with Harvard for their students, so it is a pretty prestigious school.  I probably would not have been accepted had I applied during my senior year of high school.  
            Grinnell College has two dining facilities.  Marketplace is there residential dining hall and Spencer Grill is the retail dining center.  They accommodate to several students including having a gluten-free and vegan venue in their dining hall.  In addition, they prepare meals that are culturally acceptable for many religions. 
            Grinnell College offers catering services within their dining centers.  Their culinary staff consists of certified chefs, sous chefs, executive chefs, chef de cuisine, and chef de partie.  The quality of the food increases; however, the labor increases substantially. 
            At the Marketplace, there are several venues available.  There is a Wok station, pizza station, grill station, vegan station, pasta station, eggs to order, “at home” station, salad/soup bar, deli bar, dessert bar, cereal/bread, and Belgian waffle station. In addition, Grinnell College does not contract their pop/soda, so they could have every kind of soda to mankind.  I loved being able to drink Diet Dr. Pepper at lunch.
            We saw many of the back of house production areas including the commissary, bakery, and ovens.  They had this neat piece of equipment called a sous-vide.  It is a method of cooking that cooks airtight food in a water bath creating tender and juicy meats.  My favorite piece of equipment was there dish machine.  There was hardly ever a need for lifting.  With a push of a button the cups entered the dish machine.  In addition, they never had to lift the soiled plates from the original tray line, since this is the same line that goes directly to the dishwasher.  Lastly, I noticed they had a large salad spinner.  I wish that Rialto would have had one of those for my special event!
Tuesday, July 31, 2012
University of Northern Iowa
            Today, I met with the Cedar Falls, Iowa Hy-Vee dietitian named Dean.  This was a tour day that really focused on my interests.  Hy-Vee grocery stores hire dietitians at both the cooperate levels and store levels.  There are no grocery stores in the St. Louis area that hire dietitians onsite.  In order for Dierbergs and Schnucks to compete with stores like Hy-Vee, I think they should hire dietitians, but I may have a skewed opinion J. 
            Dean Schillinger, RD, discussed his role at Hy-Vee.  He conducts several screenings for his customers such as cholesterol, blood pressure, personal metabolism screening, etc.  In addition, he offers private consultations and group program.  Dean provides tours to his customers that are interested in weight-loss, diabetes, cholesterol, and personal shoppers. Lastly, he conducts programs at the stores mainly sampling, cooking classes, community presentations, and lunch ‘n’ learn sessions. 
            Hy-Vee offers Healthybites weekly menus that can be tailored to a weight-loss, diabetic, or heart healthy lifestyle.  There are shopping lists that you can print for these weekly menus.  Throughout the store, you can find recipes to sample chosen by the dietitians. 
            Hy-Vee offers a weight-loss program called the Begin Program.  It is a ten-week long program that shows customers a new way of life, understanding, and gaining control.  The Begin Program teaches its members what to eat and how to exercise.  It has a before and after biometric screening, 2 hours of one-on-one consultation with a Registered Dietitian, and 7 interactive group classes.
            This supermarket has point of purchase nutrition values called NuVal.  NuVal scoring is a scientific algorithm based on 30 nutrient and nutrition factors.  The numerator is good nutrients such as fiber, water and fat-soluble vitamins, and minerals, whereas the denominator is poor nutrients such as trans-fat, cholesterol, saturated fat, sodium, and sugar.  The NuVal scores can be anywhere from 1-100.  The higher the number the more nutritious it is for you.  As you can guess fresh fruit such as blueberries have a high NuVal score of 100, whereas a highly processed full of sodium pizza has a NuVall score of 8. 
            We toured the store, and he pointed out some very interesting things.  I am completely jealous of the Hy-Vees!  I want one in my area!  I really would appreciate what it would do for my community and my career.  If not, can some of the grocery stores around me start hiring dietitians? 
            Today was my last day (not official) of my internship besides my evaluation, so I have some catching up to do on some last minute projects.  I hope that I get done :/ I will be working on Rotation Evaluations, Nutrition Marketing, and Cost analysis this evening, no Olympics for me!

Weeks4-7 at PSU (Plymouth State University)

I know it has been a while since my first blog, but I thought I could sum up the last month in just one blog post.
The beginning of week 4 was mostly work for me. The shifts here are not set and you could work as early as 6 am to as late as 10-11pm, if there is a function, any day of the week. I am used to having varied hours, so that was not a huge problem for me. I got to work with the Registered Dietitian, Sara, but we were not always scheduled to work together and there were times I would go 3-4 days without seeing her, but the time we have spent together has been beneficial. I learned that the students here could appeal the mandatory meal plan (for freshman and sophomores) if they had a good enough reason and that Sara would be the person to talk with them and help them with the process.
Heather, Sara and I visited Rockywold-Deephaven camp (another Sodexo account 20 minutes from campus) where their food was well presented, fresh and delicious. The sweet potato fries were delicious and the fruit tart for desert was too! Lynn (a dining room manager for PSU during the school year) was not there so, we will have to go back when she is working.
Heather and I at Rockywold-Deephaven
Heather and I started making plans for the menu we wanted to create for the Healthy Workplace Presentation that Sara was doing for the Chamber of Commerce as a part of their Brown Bag Series. Hue (production manager) talked to us for a few hours and showed us around the kitchen and the equipment. He talked about and showed us the ordering on the Sodexho net FSM program. He also simulated giving us a hard time about making changes to a menu, because he said that is how it would go if you made changes to a standardized recipe. I think his point was that there were steps you had to take if you wanted to make changes.
 The middle of week 4 I got to talk to Steve of Union Grille about Vending operations and Ann-Marie about her job with finances. There was also a managers meeting that discussed the details of Summer Fest.
In talking with Ann Marie about her job, I got to see her large work load. Having deadlines that are the same every week (Monday and Friday) is an interesting concept for me. It would test your time management skills and your ability to balance your work load. Having deadlines would keep me on track and I know how well I am keeping pace .I got to see how everything is connected monetarily. I also thought it was cool that everything is standardized so someone new coming in can look to the company for help. With Ann-Marie being new, it has been helpful to her. There is a feature that IT can use to take over your computer and help you with your software.  The use of excel, is something I know I will need to sharpen my skills in. I have not used Excel as much as I should have to make it useful for me in the business world.
Heather and I created talking points for the healthy lunch presentation. We are touching on the balanced plate meal and the benefits of why we choose it. I also finished the Gluten free brochure, which highlights the gluten free options, has in the dining hall. I am working on more topics for the online blog post as well as finishing up the healthy workplace brochure.
From Left to Right: Sara, Nishant Chaudhary,Jalisa ,Heather
Visiting the Mountain View Grand Hotel on 7/13/ was a great experience for me. Having the Food and Beverage director, Nishant Chaudhary as our host and personally show us around, made me feel like he was very involved at his facility. Seeing how seriously they take their sustainability commitments is impressive. They have a wind turbine, vegetable and herb farm, water tower and other green initiatives that the MVG has in place, is reassuring that larger resorts could modify their systems to be more environmentally friendly. They were very professional at the MVG. Even though they are a four diamond hotel and dining, I feel it would not be hard to implement some of the standards at different levels of food service. They are committed to making sure guest leave happy and most of the clientele are repeat customers.  I also liked how the F&B director viewed the use of the term “problems”. He does not view setbacks as a “problem”; he prefers to look at any difficult situation as a challenge that just needs creativity to get to a solution.  The food was AMAZING and the farm animals were cute! I got to almost nose a lama! It was pretty neat! I would love to go back and visit the Mountain View Grand. If you are into sustainability, nice resorts ,animals and good food ,try and book the MVG for one of your field trips .
Sara and I trying to nose Whiskey the friendly Llama
Week 5
Week 5 started out rough due to a meeting about the expectation we had about the program. I learned that I need to ask more questions and speak up when things do not seem to be going as planned. I will certainly do A TON more research on the school and companies I plan on working for in the future to try and get a good feel for the establishment before I arrive.
For the Healthy Workplace presentation ,I made the chicken for the chicken shawarma plate. Heather made the fruit salad and roasted vegetables. One of the employees really like our chicken and tahini and hummus on the whole wheat pita. This meal is considered as a balanced meal from Sodexo . This includes a certain amount of fiber and calories and protein. A balanced meal is featured in the dining hall every day so the students can make better meal choices.
Our meal ,The Chicken Shawarma Plate, offers two types of protein: Chicken and chickpeas in the hummus (which is fat free). The 28g of protein offer 44% of your daily recommended protein intake ( if you weigh 175 lbs).The whole meal is only 500 Calories and is full of nutrients and vitamins. We used whole wheat pita and whole wheat pasta which means there’s at least 8g of fiber in the meal. The fruit salad is a light dessert that can easily go with any meal.
Heather and I with our finished product
We got a few compliments on the food from the guest and they were particularly excited about the reusable lunch bags we provided for them They were interested in the presentation and took notes. we had a bigger turn out than expected. 19 registered and 23 came. Sara also had some interactive pieces to her presentation with prize giveaways.
 After the presentation we ate lunch with the regional Dietitian, Danielle, who talked with Sara about her ideas for starting a healthy workplace initiative for Sodexo and to get the other dietitians involved and doing more with dietetics at their respective sites. It sounds like they were being used for marketing purposes more than consultants.
I also finished another Blog today ,entitled Work out in your Dorm room . It is about workouts you could do with little to no equipment ,or things you can find in your dorm room. I thought that would be helpful for college students to know and for the freshman and sophomores that are required to live on campus.
 7 /19 Summer  Fest was today! I had fun on the microphone announcing the games and cheering on the cupcake eaters! The guy from res-life, Isaac did a great job on the old man of the mountain Ice sculpture! He was into it and it looked great!
So A LOT of food was thrown out. There were speed racks full of sandwiches and a WHOLE cart full of fruit. I think we could have pushed harder for people to take food with them! We should have given out reusable bags for them to carry items in and to distract them from the fact that we used all plastic containers that were not sustainable at all! Over all it was a good day. Heather and I were in charge of managing the clean-up, while everyone else left. The tents ended up in the wrong place and had to be moved. That was not a huge issue, but it could have saved a bit of time.
As for the waste of food, I understand that extra should be made in case they are needed. The excessive amount that was left over could have fed a whole other picnic. Last night we ran out of turkey breast for dinner, there was simply not enough made, but today there was SO much that was thrown away. I do not understand how this happens.
Sara gave me my evaluation today as well. I can be more assertive and she thinks I am headed in the right direction to be a manager because I am personable and have good listening skills.
Sara conducted a nutrition counseling session today with a student. The student did not want us to sit in on the session so, we just got the handouts Sara uses for her initial meetings with clients .She goes to the My Plate website and enters in the patients information and shows them the recommendations on what their goals are. I also learned 2 conversions that you can use to have a better understanding of how much sugar and protein you are consuming. Divide g of sugar by 4 to find out how many teaspoons of sugar is in a food item and divide the number of g of protein by 7 to find out how many ounces are in a food item.