Some students and faculty really enjoy the meals offered at the various eateries on campus. Others, however, complain about these options, and Hal McLaughlin knows all about it. Hal is the head of the Sodexo operations here on campus—his office is located in the basement of Ellis. If you are on a special diet, happen to be vegan or a vegetarian, or are just trying to watch what you eat, Hal offers advice on being a savvy consumer. Read on.
What kinds of meals do you offer for vegetarian students, and how often are they offered?
Every meal. We have a menu cycle that is four weeks long. At the national level, then the regional (we’re part of the northeast), and then from there, we can tweak it at the local level.
How often do you update the Web site to correspond with what is being served?
Weekly. Sometimes we’ll get stocked out, and we won’t know until it’s too late, there is a disclaimer on the site that says subject to change, and that’s why.
How do you accommodate students on diets?
The best thing that they can do is talk to me or one of the chefs. We’ll work with the nutritionist and the Health and Wellness Center.
Which is healthier, Muddy or Baker?
It depends where you go. Obviously the salad line is going to be healthy, regardless. However, Baker would be healthier because there’s more opportunities, choices, and creativity; plus you’re not stuck with, “this is what we’re offering.” Downstairs you could go around and get what you want; you can mix and match. I think you have to be an educated consumer.
What are some of the worst foods in Baker?
Anything with the extra fats (like the sausage in the mornings) and the meatloaf. I believe the “freshmen fifteen” is a combination of being away from home and not regimenting yourself.
Ellen Santa Maria ’12, Juniata Online Journalist