Food for Thought a hit with students
Published: Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 01:07
This past spring semester, Parkland College brought a new and improved selection of healthier food choices to the campus. With such a diverse group of students at Parkland, comes a diverse group of appetites. That’s where Food For Thought comes in.
Food For Thought is well established in the catering industry. Founded in 1983, they have been thriving for over 25 years. Their business focus has been driven by two principles: delicious food and gracious hospitality.
According to the Food For Thought website, their catering division is renowned for creating special events and pleasing its customers. In fact, Food For thought catering is on the preferred caterer lists for such distinguished venues as The Field Museum, Chicago History Museum, Millennium Park, Café Brauer and the Chicago Cultural Center.
Food For Thought Management expanded into contract foodservice operations in 1989 by developing the Food For Thought Café concept. These cafés have consistently received high marks for creative menu development, unique marketing and innovative merchandising.
At Parkland, the menu is a bit different from what is generally available to customers that wish to due business with Food for Thought’s catering industry. When catering for events, Food For Thought gives menu options such as the cocktail event, the multi-course tasting menu, the traditional four-course and the winter buffet dinner.
At Parkland, however, menus are loaded with popular foods such as beef and turkey burgers, pizza, tacos and quesadillas, salads, chicken and chicken fingers, fries and yummy breakfast foods. As side dishes for these courses, healthy fruits and vegetables, plus thirst quenching refreshments are offered.
Although Food For Thought has brought about great changes by giving Parkland students the choices of eating healthy, what is important is a healthy mind. Students have to realize and take the initiative on what they choose from on a day-to-day basis.
Communication major, Cherish Mackey explained, “Coming off to college, I found it very hard to start good eating habits. I gained 15 pounds within my freshman year, easily. This new cafeteria is making it more accessible for me to practice good eating habits. The food is delicious and provides such a great variety.”
Other Parkland students are just amazed by the great food and have not a care in the world about healthier choices. When asked whether she ever noticed the calorie count at the bottom of each menu item, Chemistry major Taylor Jones responded, “I see them, but I never pay much attention. All I’m ever focused on is grubbin’. They’re food is so good.” Adding a smile and a laugh, it became clear that Jones loves Food for Thought’s menu selection.
One of the most frequently asked questions that Food for Thought faced while remodeling Parkland College’s cafeteria, is whether or not the food is affordable. While their prices are not equivalent to McDonald’s dollar menu, the prices are reasonable and the food is held to higher standards.
Parkland student Alexis Jones said, “I rarely eat at school because I’m always rushing from class to class but when I absolutely can not think on an empty stomach, our cafeteria is my first option. I spend on average seven bucks on a full coarse meal. I mostly get a burger, drink and fries.”
Overall, many students think it was a great idea for Parkland to bring in Food for Thought. Allowing students access to healthy, delicious cafeteria food on campus at affordable prices really seems to “hit the spot.”