Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

North Quad dining achieves gold with national honor

The new North Quadrangle Residential and Academic Complex was a campuswide sensation this past year, and dining was a big part of the excitement. That was confirmed by the National Association of College and University Food Services (NACUFS), which recognized North Quad dining with its most prestigious award.

  North Quad's achievement "is the direct result of the Residential Life Initiatives to improve and expand the campus living experience for students,” says University Housing Director Linda Newman. (Photo by Scott Soderberg, U-M Photo Services)

In the category of Large Schools Residential Dining Concepts, the Gold honor for the 2011 Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards went to Residential Dining Services for North Quadrangle Residential Dining. Evaluated for menu, nutrition and wellness, presentation, marketing and operational standards, North Quad dining was selected from entries nationwide.

“This is wonderful recognition for the tremendous work involved in planning and implementing the North Quad dining experience,” says Mike Lee, director of Residential Dining Services in University Housing. “With support from our other culinary and nutrition experts, Dining Manager Brian Palmer, Chef Lead Frank Turchan and the North Quad dining team immersed themselves in every aspect of the operation, from menu planning, serving layout, food presentation and quality assurance. Their dedication and enthusiasm — and the response from the students — made North Quad dining a success from the start.”

Among the innovations in the dining operation at North Quad are the mini-marketplace stations for different kinds of entrees, food preparation at the serving areas, smaller trays and plates to reduce food waste, a la carte dining to complement the buffet dining hours, and menu features of entrees from around the world to reflect the international theme of North Quad’s residential community. As with other residential dining halls, North Quad offers local produce, meats, dairy and other food items; nutrition counseling; and updated menu access on the University Housing website.

“What we have achieved at North Quad, as well as at Hill Dining Center and the Blue Apple Café in Bursley Hall, is the direct result of the Residential Life Initiatives to improve and expand the campus living experience for students,” says University Housing Director Linda Newman. “The nutritional and social aspects of all our dining halls are integral to the feeling of community among residential students, so we devote a great deal of energy and talent to the food operations.”

Part of the food services operations in the Division of Student Affairs, Residential Dining Services operates nine dining halls and nine residential cafes on the U-M Ann Arbor campus. The staffs prepare and serve approximately 2.5 million meals annually to residential and off-campus students with meal plans and “Blue Bucks.”

NACUFS has recognized other Residential Dining Services at U-M with previous Loyal E. Horton Awards:

• 2007 Gold award for the Blue Apple Café, retail sales single concept category

• 2009 Bronze award for Hill Dining Center, multiple concepts category

• 2010 Bronze award for Ciao Down Pizzeria (South Quad), retail sales single concept

Headquartered in Okemos, NACUFS was founded in 1958 to promote the highest quality of foodservice on school, college and university campuses by providing members with educational and training opportunities, technical assistance, scholarships, industry information and research. The NACUFS membership consists of approximately 550 institutions of higher education from across the United States and Canada, and nearly 500 industry members from the food, equipment and consulting market segments.