FoodService Director | January 2011

30 Under 30: Every operation has its own young talent, but who are the employees who have already made a big impact in a short period of time. We present the first eight of our 30 Under 30.

FSD of the Month

Tim Prosinski, foodservice director/chef at 3,200-student Berlin Public Schools in Connecticut, doesn’t know how to sit back and accept the status quo. In his five years at the district, he...

Research

Dining services at the 11,700-student University of Notre Dame in South Bend, Ind., has had two major issues to deal with in recent months: a failing economy and a struggling football team. Unfortunately, both events have hit catering sales equally hard.
Average salaries grew in 2009, but women had a higher percentage of salary change during the past year, according to FSD's 2010 Compensation Study...

Steal this idea

For Earth Day, meals in elementary schools were served without the use of ovens, warmers, steamers and heated serving lines. Students were served deli sandwiches, salads, trail mix and fresh kiwi. I...
We added merchandisers at both of our residential dining halls because we were concerned that students were waiting too long. Students suggested offering a prepackaged line of sandwiches to offset...
I have always felt that the little things we do to show our team members that we care make all the difference in the world. I send a personal birthday note to each of my team members and I regularly...
We have a cart in our retail café year-round. We started it in response to some student inquiries. We started in the summer when fresh produce was plentiful. Whatever we could find that...
We've created a fun resident activity called "Cooking with Keven." Each month a dish is made during activity time. The dish is made from start to finish with a history and...
To show our appreciation to our employees we offer free tutoring sessions every Wednesday night for the children of our employees. Bama Dining retail managers and supervisors volunteer two hours to...
We started a Cooperative Cart Program where school organizations can check out a mobile food cart to sell healthy foods during meals. The carts have either hot or cold storage, and the organizations...
When demand at our Crossroads dining began lagging behind other locations we decided to revamp the menu with campus celebrity items. Examples include a classic cheeseburger, renamed each year for the...
We started a brunch for lunch day this year to change things up a little for our students. At least once a month we serve breakfast foods for lunch. We’ve done omelets; sausage, egg and...
As part of our Eat Smart campaign, which showcases the healthy options we offer, we included events this semester such as Balanced Plate Week, where we focused on teaching guests how to create a...
We are hosting a Fall Festival Farmers’ Market where we feature two recipes in a bag: apple crisp and butternut squash soup. Each bag includes the recipe, dry ingredients and all non-...

Ingredients

With more focus on healthy foods, beans are finding wider acceptance on non-commercial menus. Beans, high in protein and with more fiber than many whole-grain foods, are enjoying a resurgence in...

Confessions

Jason Giagrande, director of foodservice operations and events for Flik at NBC Universal in New York, is addicted to Vita Coco, hates flying and wishes he could learn to relax.

Five Questions

Retail Experience

Going to The Dairy at the University of Maryland is like going back in time—in more ways than one. Not only is this retail shop contained in a space that, according to head baker and pastry...

Health & Wellness

A community partnership has helped 8,500-student Peninsula School District redevelop menus to be healthier.

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
chicken dinner

For the last three years, we’ve hosted an event called Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner. We sponsor the local chapter of Future Farmers of America to raise the chickens, and we have to arrange all the transporting from farms to the distributor, which keeps the birds in a freezer until we’re ready. We build hype by having students vote on the proprietary spice blend they would like on the chicken. It helps the nutrition team get involved in the educational process and showcase local food purchasing.

Ideas and Innovation
employees generation multicultural

We are no longer short staffed, ever. On a given day, missing two team members from a team of 50 would leave us 96% staffed. The actual choice of wording places a positive emphasis on those that did come to serve our guests and patients. We no longer use the phrase “short staffed”; this is a game-changer when we are challenging ourselves as culture facilitators or leaders.

Ideas and Innovation
food symbols allergens

To make safe food as accessible as possible for our guests with allergies, we are creating an allergen-friendly kitchen this summer. Students and community members will be able to use our mobile app to place orders for allergen-friendly food and pick them up at the central kitchen. The kitchen will also produce grab-and-go options that will be distributed across campus.

Ideas and Innovation
construction plans drawing tools calculator

When revamping an old cafeteria or building a new retail spot, the design process can feel like fitting together the pieces of a puzzle: What needs to fit in the space, and what’s the most efficient flow for staffers, cooks, diners and more?

Cathy Estes, administrative director of nutrition services at four northern Indiana hospitals that are part of the Franciscan Health network, faced the creation of a new in-house dining program at Franciscan’s Munster hospital. Amid all the big plans, design was one of the largest undertakings.

“I was looking at 5,000 square feet on a...

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