Digital image of woman walking red carpet event with Hollywood sign in background

Penn State Campus Dining Wins National Award

Penn State Campus Residential Dining recently received national recognition for a Red Carpet theme dinner designed to treat students to a Hollywood-style culinary experience. The National Association of College and University Food Services (NACUFS) awarded Campus Dining a bronze medal in the Loyal E. Horton Dining Award category of Residential Dining - Special Event.

Held at Penn State University Park during spring semester, the Red Carpet dinner took place at all five dining commons on campus. The special dining event included Hollywood-style decor, photo booths, and social media promotions. A special Snapchat filter was created for the event, and campus "celebrity" chefs were featured on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to offer a sneak peak of the recipes planned for the night's menu.

High-end entree selections included citrus marinated salad, creamy lobster and corn chowder, and gourmet garlic and rosemary beef strip loin.

"Everyone in Campus Dining worked hard to create a one-of-a-kind cuisine experience that our students will remember and always associate with Penn State Campus Residential Dining," says Jim Meinecke, residential dining coordinator for Penn State Food Services.

"We are thrilled that NACUFS recognized the talents, skills, and efforts of our Residential Dining teams with a bronze medal for the Red Carpet dinner," adds Lisa Wandel, director of Residential Dining.

The Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards, named for a NACUFS founder and past president, celebrate exemplary menus, presentations, special event planning, and new dining concepts, and provide an avenue for sharing ideas and creative presentations in campus dining services. More than 75 colleges and universities across North America submitted entries in several award categories.

"The entries submitted by the various NACUFS institutions showcase some of the best trends and ideas in college and university dining service programs across the country," says Dawn Hearne, Hendrix College, Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards chair.


The award will be presented at the NACUFS national conference in July, and the Red Carpet event will also be featured in Food Management magazine.

NACUFS supports college and university food services by providing members with the programs and resources they need to excel. Founded by a group of 20 college and university food service professionals from across the United States, NACUFS focuses on promoting and supporting excellence in collegiate dining as well as sharing creativity and knowledge among food service professionals.