Kitchen Cabinet Meeting Minutes March 2015

Posted on March 24th, 2015 by

Kitchen Cabinet
March 9, 2015
Sami Manick, Danny Pavek(Greens), Cameron Reischauer(Greens), Sam Panzer(Student Senate), Jim Dontje, Judy Douglas, Mark Hanson, Erin Kuiper (Book Mart)Saskia Raether(Greens),Katie Feterl(Greens), Steve Kjellgren, Lisa Heldke, Chuck Niederriter, Paul Matzke, Jessica Braun, George Elliott

Take a professor to lunch – As this idea was not going to be pursued in Kitchen Cabinet, Student Senate will be pursuing the idea. There will be information going out in the next few weeks but basically students can get a ticket for lunch, invite their professor and start building a foundation of getting to know faculty and staff.

Celebrate the Dining Service! – Judy, Margo and Lisa are jumping on the campaign of celebrating Dining Service. As Dining Service continues to be recognized nationally members of the Kitchen Cabinet felt it only fitting to have some type of celebration where the guests of honors do not prepare their own party. A few different ideas were thrown out such as having a picnic in the warmer weather and inviting limited outside guests. A more formal idea where it would be in Alumni Hall and there would be more community involvement. Steve noted that most of the Dining Service employees will have a hard time accepting this as they pretty much just do their job and are shy about begin recognized. Steve felt 2-2:30 pm would be a good time as those that are leaving their shift can join in and the later folks can take a break. Lisa, Margo, Judy, Mark, Sami and Sam would all like to be on the committee.

Gustavus Greens – Katie and Saskia are graduating this year so Danny and Cameron graciously agreed to get up this morning and check out the KC. Katie stated that Danny and Cameron have been key players in the hydroponic system in the greenhouse. They plan on running water through the system this week to make sure all the joints are sealed. They are also exploring a 5 gallon bucket systems where students could have them in their room and they could grow spices.

Big Hill Farm – Jim updated us on Big Hill Farm. They are currently in the planning stage and are slightly ahead from previous years and working on getting seeds started. The seeds do germinate in Nobel but possibly will be able to do in Greenhouse. Spring break is about when things get started. They are in the selection process right now for future students to work Big Hill Farm. The previous year’s interns put out a job description, the students manage the selection with an interview and credentials. Operational expenses have been good. There is money for a stipend for students as well. It is hopeful that the Greenhouse money might help support Big Hill Farm in the future. The hope would be that a summer intern could go through the fall or if you have worked in the fall can you work through the summer so there would be more carryover and a relay of people. Production is up from Big Hill Farm and there are items that stay on the vine and have no one to pick them and use them. Discussed how getting the community more involved in the fall may be helpful.

Reserving the Evelyn Young Dining Room – There is no final conclusion on the answer to this ongoing question. So the answer is yes until there is something that gives Steve pause.

Membership – Do we have all the right players at the Kitchen Cabinet table? Some suggestions: a representative from Big Hill Farm. Possibly somebody from Residential Life. Anybody from off campus? Anyone from the Greek system. Are we doing for everyone what we need to be doing? Or does someone need a voice.

Wellbeing – Water taste test. Is there still interest in educating or getting a pulse from the student body about bottled water? We have more hydration stations – is it any different than tap water. Does this still seem like it would be something fun to do. The reason for doing that would be to get rid of bottled water. Students would have the voice to say what they don’t want. It is the highest volume drink sold in The Market Place. What is our mechanism for hearing students speak out about something like this that does affect the campus? Having a taste test might help students see there is not much of a difference. This is a question of how we change behaviors. Also noted was others do use our campus dining service and bottled water is popular at other events if you are visiting and are not carrying a water bottle.
What projects are the Greens working on – would this fall under the interest of the Greens? The Greens did say they are brainstorming projects and this might be great to get some data. We discussed how our campus is becoming a culture of sustainability. Past projects have included Recycle mania and Energy wars. The Greens noted Energy wars is on the list of things to start organizing. Jim talked about having a goal campus wide of being a zero waste campus which could encompass some of these smaller projects. The bigger issue is our overall commitment to reducing waste. It is not about the taste of water it is reducing plastic bottles. Maybe it is time to set a big goal and then work out these things. Can we have all these forces come together and figure out what are we trying to do here. Reaffirmation of sustainability that is important on our campus and where do you start the conversation? Jim is saying having the goal of zero waste on campus starts the momentum. It would be nice to have this in the conversation when students as first year come here in the FTS class – this is our campus goal and this is what we would like students to do. Student Life already feels there is too much in orientation and how many students retain the information from orientation. Most students don’t know we have a Big Hill Farm. Is there a possibility talking to Residential Life and having the CF’s involved at the beginning of the year. Sam feels that would be useful as that did not come up in his training. Would it be helpful if the CF’s went to the Greens and asked the Greens to provide programming?

Tabling idea from Kitchen Cabinet during the school year – Did you know kind of a theme where once a month KC would have a table and discuss topics that are discussed during our meetings.
This may be a way to get our message out and help students to have more of a voice in the Kitchen Cabinet.

From the Dietitian – George noted that this has been one of the busiest semesters for her. She seems to be keeping busy seeing students in Health Service. The upcoming lunch and learn is full and was full within a couple of days. The good news is students are utilizing services. Steve would like to see some follow through with our food allergy students and how we can get them to be more vocal like our students who are vegetarian are. The idea is to meet the needs of our students with food allergies and intolerances and so we don’t have to guess what those needs are or might be. George will contact Disability Services and see how we can move this forward.


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