Kennesaw State University Creates Sustainability Degree

Also, University of Missouri cuts food waste.

At Kennesaw State University, sustainability is more than an environmental awareness program. Now, it’s a degree program as well.

Kennesaw has become the first U.S. university to offer a bachelor of science degree in culinary sustainability and hospitality. The program will begin this fall, with a goal of 150 students registered for the first year.

Christian Hardigree, who was named director of the Institute of Culinary Sustainability and Hospitality, says the program will focus on courses in farm-to-fork efforts, plant-based cuisine, energy saving and reducing food waste. The first two courses will be Introduction to Culinary Sustainability, and Hospitality and World Cuisines and Culture.

“It really is past time for such a program,” Hardigree says. “In the culinary and hospitality industries there is a lot of talk about sustainability on the plate, but we need to enhance education of sustainability beyond the plate.”

Kennesaw already has a vigorous sustainability program that includes hydroponic gardens—which even have a system that reclaims rainwater—a germination tank and an herb garden. Hardigree credited the work of Gary Coltek, director of Culinary and Hospitality Services, with inspiring the creation of the degree program.

15,000

The decrease in the amount of food waste Campus Dining Services at the University of Missouri, in Columbia, recorded during the past two years after eliminating trays from dining halls. The trayless initiative not only decreased food waste but also decreased water waste by 100,000 gallons per year, according to a university news release.

The food waste from the dining hall is sent to Bradford Farms to be composted. Furthering its sustainability efforts, Campus Dining Services converts oil to biodiesel, which fuels the trucks from Bradford Farms.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
aquaponics produce

We partnered with a student group interested in aquaponics to build a recirculating fish tank and lettuce growing operation in our Oval Dining Center. The large tanks are stocked with tilapia that live in the water and fertilize lettuce growing in the recirculating water under grow lights. We then harvest the lettuce and use it in our operations. The unit is set up in the dining room where customers can see the science in action, learn about the process and enjoy the fresh lettuce that was just picked.

Ideas and Innovation
fridge system

We installed a remote refrigeration system as part of our cafeteria renovation. The main part of the system is located on the roof and controls all our refrigerated equipment, including the walk-in freezer and coolers, beverage refrigerator, etc. The system allows us to identify problems faster, and the elimination of individual condenser units cuts down on A/C bills as well as noise.

Industry News & Opinion

Students at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor will be served student-grown produce from the campus farm at dining halls this fall, M Live reports.

The dining team received its first batch of produce from UM’s on-campus farm in June, after students received the proper USDA certification to grow, harvest and deliver food to campus dining halls. In order to figure out what produce is needed, students communicate with the dining department weekly, and Michigan Dining purchases items accordingly.

"The students are involved from seed to plate," Executive Chef Frank Turchan...

Sponsored Content
college students eating

From Ovention.

Today’s colleges and universities know they should offer more than a large selection of breakfast cereals in the morning and chicken tenders at lunch to appeal to students. When it comes to what’s trending on campuses, here’s a look at what directors can tune into to boost engagement.

1. Expanded dining hours

Late-night options have long been a popular fixture on college campuses, but if it’s too late, students often choose to venture to off-campus retailers to satisfy their cravings. According to Technomic’s 2017 College & University Consumer Trend...

FSD Resources