Danielle Kemp

Danielle Kemp's organizational skills and determination has made her a success at the University of California.

Why Selected?

According to Bonnie Crouse, assistant director of residential dining, Danielle has made an impact on dining services by:

•Implementing a new software program that provides students detailed nutritional analysis of all dining commons menus and recipes

•Exceeding all expectations for special events planning, including innovative activities and educational information for Sustainability Week, Sustainable Fish Day and Nutrition Week

•Restructuring dining services’ comprehensive Environmental Student Internship program and mentoring students who’ve completed research and projects for dining staff

Details

Dining Services Dietitian, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA
Age: 26
Education: B.S. in applied nutrition from California Polytechnic State University
Years at organization: 2

Get to know

Q. What has been your proudest accomplishment?

The successful implementation of an online nutrition software program, which allows customers to view nutritional information, perform calculations, and filter by preference, location or allergen from any technology device. Above all this allows our customers to make better food choices that positively affect their health and lives.
 

Q. What would you say you excel at over more seasoned colleagues?

My enthusiasm and drive to help make change. In part due to my age, I am able to provide a different perspective and am often an advocate for changing something for the better. I am also eager to become involved in different projects and programs that will make a difference in the lives around me.
 

Q. What's the best career advice you've been given?

Communication is the backbone of any relationship, workplace or personal, and if your intentions are sincere and your drive is not just self-serving, it’s best to talk to anyone you encounter in life in this way.
 

Q. What's been the biggest challenge you've had to overcome?

Understanding the different aspects necessary for change. Change can be difficult and complex, but being an advocate for change that will better the lives of our students, staff and the community is something that makes the bumps and exertion worth it in the end.
 

Q. What would you like to accomplish in your career in the next two years?

I want to continue to educate and influence our student residents who eat in our dining commons. I want to have a positive effect on their dietary choices and allow them to become knowledgeable about the foods that they are consuming. Learning and teaching is a part of what we do here at the university and educating our students about healthy eating habits is just another great area that we focus on. We have a great learning opportunity that allows us to influence our students before they are independent.  

Q. What can you look back at now and laugh at?

How nervous I was about doing my first presentation in front of a lecture hall full of numerous students. Now, this is very common for me to do so I don’t get as nervous.
 

Under 30

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

The University of Maryland will begin offering weekly specials at all of its dining halls this semester, The Diamond Back reports.

The weekday specials will allow Dining Services to offer past menu items that students miss as well as new dishes students have been requesting, according to a spokesperson.

Students can find out which specials are being offered each week via dining hall table tents as well as through Dining Services’ social media. During select weeks, the specials may reflect a particular theme, such as Taste of the South.

Read the full story via...

Ideas and Innovation
email computer screen

Communication is key, and [managers] are busy too. One tip I picked up from another director was to label my subject line with the header “action,” “information” or “response” followed by a brief description of the email contents. That way they can filter through their inboxes during their busy days to know which emails need their attention immediately and which they can save to read later.

Ideas and Innovation
pinterest hand phone

We like to offer a constantly changing menu. Last year, I started a Pinterest account—not for marketing, but for my team, so that they can look to the recipes for inspiration and try something new. We tried protein cookies based onto a Pinterest recipe, and our residents loved them.

Ideas and Innovation
coal creek student salad bar

When I was visiting Minneapolis Public Schools, I saw that they have these cool signs on top of their salad bars. As soon as we got back, we re-created them. They are big and branded, and have the portion requirements. They say “Taste something new today” on one side, and we support our local farmers on the other. They help the bars look fresh and delish, and attract students’ eyes.

FSD Resources