Attending the National Association of College & University Food Services (NACUFS) Conferences are one of the highlights of my year. The passion that the individuals have for their school and their program is always energetic and this year in Nashville was no exception. Occasionally I even miss being in operations when I’m at these conferences hearing about the amazing accomplishments of individuals, such as the newest Minah Award Winner Rich Neumann, or all of the incredible programs on various campuses. The education committee for each conference takes their job very seriously and I always enjoy the various speakers and edu-tainment which they provide. This year, among other professional speakers, 63 individuals from various institutions presented successful programs, information, and ideas on how to make their program better with their peers! Can you even believe it? 63 people just giving away their secrets as to how they were (and weren’t) successful so others can learn and succeed! The amount of information that these individuals share with one another is just amazing!
The items that stood out for me in the sessions I could attend were:
- The definition of True Collaboration includes the word “PROCESS”
- For a prospective student, when all other items about a college are equal (program, opportunity, scholarships, etc.), the DINING program can be the deciding factor!
- I still totally GEEK out at analyzing numbers
- Reducing food waste is on the mind of many and figuring out WHERE to start can be difficult
- Being EPIC does not mean you are perfect
- Including things like TVs, video game consoles and pool tables in a facility with an unlimited all you care to eat meal plan does not mean that there will be an increase in food cost or waste; it does mean is that student engagement INCREASES dramatically!
- How we think we sound and what the rest of the world hears can be very DIFFERENT
Thank you to all the hardworking committee members of NACUFS for a great conference! In a world of so much negativity, it was a wonderful reminder that there are people who still want to Band Together – Learn together. Work together. Succeed together.
See y’all soon! – Megan