Sodexo, Liberty University’s dining services provider, not only takes on the monumental task of preparing and serving meals for thousands across campus, it is also committed to educating students to eat right.
Robin Quay, Sodexo’s registered dietitian at Liberty, along with Peter Jerominek, Sodexo executive chef, began offering free cooking workshops last semester to help students make healthy lifestyle choices. This semester, four workshops are being offered every fourth Tuesday, beginning Jan. 29, in the executive dining room at Reber-Thomas Dining Hall.
Topics include general nutrition, finding healthy foods in the dining hall, the importance of being active, how good nutrition can prevent colds and flu, reading nutrition labels, portions, calories and sugar in beverages, and any other nutrition topic students may want to know more about, Quay said. She and Jerominek discuss different types of nutrition for the day’s theme, and then show students how to make three dishes.
“It is a great way to work with students. I feel like there is definitely a need to help students understand that what they eat affects what they do,” Quay said. “ (The class is) fun, it’s casual, the students get to eat, and they get to try new things.”
She said the idea started when she saw a need for student-athletes to learn practical methods for achieving nutrition goals. The class is open to all students, however. Last semester nearly 50 students participated.
Dillon Segur, a member of Liberty’s men’s tennis team, said he has made nearly every dish he learned in the class.
“My favorite part is the activities that we get to do. They not only tell us what to do but we get to learn through hands-on experience,” he said.
Liberty offers many resources to help students develop healthy habits for body, mind, and spirit, from extensive intramural and Club Sports programs, to top-notch fitness facilities and free exercise classes, to exciting outdoor excursions and a fun variety of Student Activities.