Each year, Campus Dining hosts meaningful, food-oriented events to help educate, nourish, and excite the campus community.
Food Justice Month
During the month of October, Campus Dining student interns work in collaboration with staff and other campus departments to educate students on the importance of food justice. Food justice and food sovereignty are the rights of all people to have access to affordable, nutritious, and culturally appropriate foods. Demonstrating food justice on campus includes highlighting the importance of local, organic, ethically-sourced, and sustainable foods, as well as educating on the food system and supply chains.
Past Food Justice Month events have included:
A Food Justice Quad Fair
Free, locally-sourced food from farmer’s markets and local vendors, a food truck, and informational tables and fliers held on the Academic Quad, located centrally on campus.
Field Trips to Local Farmers Markets
Students were provided with free transportation to their choice of the following local farmers markets in order to engage with the Los Angeles food sysem in a more intimate way.
- Old LA - Highland Park Certified Farmers Market
- South Pasadena Farmers Market
- Atwater Village Farmers Market
- Hollywood Farmers Market
- Pasadena Victory Park Farmers Market
Food Justice Film Fest
In October 2021, the Dining Intern team organized an outdoor Food Justice Film Fest at the Intercultural Community Center. Students viewed six short films about workers rights, community supported agriculture, and the power of growing your own food. After each film, dining interns moderated a short discussion whilst enjoying fresh pastries from a local bakery.
Volunteering at the Community Services Unlimited Expo Center Urban Farm
In October 2021, the Dining Intern Team coordinated a volunteer opportunity for students interested in urban agriculture. Students were provided free transportation and boxed lunches and helped CSU/Expo staff with sheet mulching and weeding while learning about the history of the farm and the importance of urban agriculture for Downtown LA residents.
Cooking It Up! Cooking Classes with Campus Dining Staff
The class starts out with a visit to the FEAST Garden, where a FEAST representative will help you harvest fresh produce for dinner (Campus Dining will supply protein, accompaniments, dessert and beverages). Then walk to the Berkus Hall Kitchen, and a Campus Dining staff member will shepherd you through preparing and cooking a seasonal menu. You'll finish up by dining together "al fresco" on the beautiful Berkus Hall Courtyard.
Every April, the College celebrates our planet with an inter-departmental collaboration. Campus Dining contributes to these celebrations by hosting themed meals in the Marketplace, participating in a Quad Fair, and encouraging students to participate in the the Marketplace's notable sustainability commitments such as the Real Food Challenge and the eco-Clamshell program.
Here's an example of an Earth Day Themed Marketplace Menu:
Homestyle @ Chef's Corner - Organic Mediterranean Chicken (gf) or Eggplant (v)(gf) with Local & Organic Lemon Potatoes (v)(gf) and a Spinach Salad (v)(gf)
Sauté Station - Earth Day Bowl - Cauliflower (v)(gf), Lentils (v)(gf), Beans (v)(gf), Marinated Mushrooms (v)(gf), Kale (v)(gf), Tofu (v)(gf), Carrot (v)(gf) and Lemon Tahini Dressing (v)(l)(gf)
Specialty Salad - Organic Quinoa and Organic Adzuki Bean Salad w/ Tomato, Scallions, Parsley, Cilantro, Lemon Zest and Lemon Dressing (v)(gf)(w/wo grilled chicken tenders)
Iron Chef Competition
On April 11, 2019 on the JSC Quad, six teams faced off for culinary glory. They were tasked with creating the best vegetarian or vegan starter and sauté dishes. At their disposal was a wide variety of fresh organic produce (some freshly picked at the FEAST garden), legumes, FEAST eggs, spices, oils, AND this year's secret ingredient - daikon radish. The top three teams were rewarded with prizes, such as a $50 gift certificate to a local restaurant. Spectators were present to cheer on the participating students, staff and faculty, and check out the campus food clubs and orgs that tabled at the event.
Dishes are evaluated on these criteria:
Best use of ingredients