Twenty-five Notable Gluten-Free Friendly Colleges for 2013
Jefferson Adams is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. His poems, essays and photographs have appeared in Antioch Review, Blue Mesa Review, CALIBAN, Hayden's Ferry Review, Huffington Post, the Mississippi Review, and Slate among others.
He is a member of both the National Writers Union, the International Federation of Journalists, and covers San Francisco Health News for Examiner.com.View all articles by Jefferson Adams
Celiac.com 10/04/2013 - As part of a nationwide change on the part of colleges and universities to address food allergies and sensitivities, more and more campuses are offering gluten-free foods to their students. Here is a list of some of the most notable so far, in alphabetical order:
Bard College is currently renovating one of their main dining halls to include a new gluten-free section.
At Baylor University, students can find a wide range of gluten-free menu options through the school’s dining services. Information on gluten-free meals, dining halls and menu items will meet their needs through the menus posted online each week.
At Carleton College, each dining hallo offers a dedicated gluten free station with the same options as non-GF students and are offered one naturally gluten-free entrée at every meal, along with dessert.
Annual staff training on proper handling of gluten-free food at the dedicated gluten free station in each dining hall.
Clark University, every meal served in the campus dining hall is made from scratch and most recipes are modified to be gluten free. In fact, Clark only serves meals that have a gluten-free equivalent.
The dining hall also offers is also a separate “My Zone” area for students to access gluten free pasta and pizza, as well as cooking utensils and small appliances.
To keep sharp on safe allergy food handling, food staff at Clark University train every morning as new meals go on the menu.
The dietitian at Columbia goes the extra mile for gluten free students: orientating them around nearby markets, introducing the chef, and even teaching them how to read nutrition labels!
Columbia's chef prepares two 100% gluten free meals every day, and takes special requests.
A gluten-free station in the main dining hall includes hot meals, gluten free staples, and desserts. Everything on the salad bar and all salad dressing are gluten free.
Emory kitchen staff is trained through the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness’s GREAT Kitchens Program.
Students have access to a gluten free designated station where they can find similar gluten free staples. Everything is labeled with a unique gluten free logo to ensure safety and to avoid cross contamination.
Dining hall staff is trained repeatedly throughout each semester to understand dietary restrictions and how they can best accommodate each different food sensitivity.
The registered dietitian on campus also works hand-in-hand with the Gluten-Free Foodies student organization to make sure students’ needs are being reached and ideas are being shared.
IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY
Gluten free dining is available at all campus locations at Iowa State University in order to ensure that all students are receiving a proper diet.
Dining staff is trained specifically to each dietary need and managers keep a close tab on all operations.
Students have access to a designated area with its own refrigerator, freezer, dry storage, cooking utensils and small appliances. Besides the full service area, students are also able to request individually made meals or sign up for a gluten-free meal schedule.
Gluten free meals are available within all dining halls on campus at Ithaca College, as well as at all campus-wide events.
The main dining hall in the student center offers daily gluten-free menus for both lunch and dinner. Students can pre-order gluten-free meals at the campus' other two dining halls through the dining hall management.
The campus also offers a Gluten-Free Pantry, which provides gluten-free breads, pastas, and equipment like microwaves and toasters.
Special labeling on all products ensures safety and security of gluten-free food.
There is also a Food Allergy Awareness Club on campus to support all students with dietary restrictions.
OREGON STATE UNIVERSITY
Oregon State offers students a list of all of the gluten-free options served in each on-campus dining hall or cafe. At some locations, these options may be limited, but at larger dining halls, gluten-intolerant students will find a wide range of safe, healthy and tasty gluten-free food.
A registered dietician is on hand to make sure that dietary considerations are met.
SOUTHERN METHODIST UNIVERSITY
Southern Methodist recently created a dining hall called Healthy on the Hilltop which serves vegan and gluten-free food.
SMU offers students a registered dietician who can help to design a healthy eating program and provide gluten-free options and equipment to students.
Gluten-free students at SUNY Potsdam have plenty of options to choose from. The school’s deli offers a variety of gluten-free breads, and the schools dining halls offer separate stations in the dining halls for gluten-free eaters.
TEXAS A&M, CORPUS CHRISTI
Students at Texas A&M in Corpus Christi will find dining halls with products like rice cereal, gluten-free pizza, soups, snacks, and desserts, and many veggies.
They can also get help from the school’s registered dietician in finding healthy and safe meal options.
Tuft issues lists all gluten-free foods served at dining halls across campus.
Students can work with Tuft's dietician, but can also find information on all menu items through “food fact cards.”
Tufts also issues educational pamphlets that describe gluten-free dining options and preparation methods.
UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA
To ensure safety of gluten-free meal, each gluten-free order is prepared and served by a dedicated service member with special colored gloves.
Also, the UA features a very active Gluten Free Club..
UNIVERSITY OF CONNECTICUT
UCONN offers a wide variety of gluten-free foods, including bread, pasta, and desserts (which are baked off-site to prevent cross contamination).
UCONN offers at least one gluten free meal option on the menu each day. UCONN students always have access to a gluten free designated area with several additional options, including dedicated, gluten-free-only toasters in all facilities, and with a dietitian who checks up on students with special diets several times a year.
UNIVERSITY OF COLORADO: BOULDER
At University of Colorado at Boulder, all school menus list the presence of any of the top eight food allergens (fish, eggs, dairy, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, soy, wheat AND gluten) for all items.
They have also cracked down on creating stricter cooking environments to ensure that a food marked as gluten free is truly 100% gluten free- an easy detail that many universities let slip by!
UNIVERSITY OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
University of New Hampshire students can access gluten-free products in each of the three dining halls on campus,
Students can find a gluten-free zone with restricted microwaves, toasters, and refrigerators, as well as a selection of prepackaged gluten-free items like cereal, bread, granola bars, waffles, desserts, and condiments.
Students can also choose to pre-order meals or cook their own stir fry or omelets in separate gluten-restricted stations.
UNIVERSITY OF NOTRE DAME
Gluten-free eaters at Notre Dame have their own private dining area located within the main dining center. Once students meet with the school’s registered dietitian, they have access to gluten free items at all dining locations, convenience stores, and on-campus restaurants.
Notre Dame has listed all the menu items they serve on campus that are free of gluten. Students can search by dining hall for entrées, sides, and snacks that are gluten-free.
All ND dining staff are trained and understand the severity of food allergies, and everything is carefully labeled on recipes, ingredient containers, menus, and online databases.
UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE
Students with gluten intolerance can take advantage of gluten-free options both in residential dining halls and in campus stores.
A professional campus nutrition coordinator can help students eat healthy meals and avoid potentially harmful gluten.
For students who still can’t find what they need, the school offers the option of making special gluten-free meal orders ahead of time.
UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN
In addition to a thriving student club on campus advocating for gluten-free options, UW Madison provides daily gluten-free options, including Thai noodles with tofu, tostadas, and enchiladas.
Weekly online menus list gluten-free options.
Yale's website says that Yale can specially order gluten free breads, cereals, pastas, and more. They will also take extra measures to follow gluten free preparation requirements for any student who asks.
People with celiac disease and gluten-intolerance will be glad to know that these colleges are not alone. They are part of a nationwide effort on the part of colleges and universities to address food allergies. As such, more changes are coming soon to campuses near you, so stay tuned. Meantime, let us know what you think of this trend by colleges to provide gluten-free food for students.
For more information, read the College Gluten Survey
As always, Celiac.com welcomes your comments (see below).
Get FREE Celiac.com email alerts (1-3 email per month with the latest celiac disease research and information, gluten-free recipes, etc.).