When students at the University of North Dakota (UND) in Grand Forks arrive on campus this fall, they will be greeted with a newly renovated Wilkerson Dining Commons.
The original Wilkerson dated back to the late 1960s. “It had some facelifts, which basically meant carpet and paint done in the last 40-plus years,” said Orlynn Rosaasen, director of Dining Services. “It had no major renovations to the space. We were getting a lot of feedback from students that they wanted more diversified menu options. They wanted a more updated atmosphere. We were even getting it from parents. Some of them went to school here in the '70s and they made the comment that the building was the same as it was when they went to school.”
The renovation began in August 2014 and was completed in phases. “It is a two-story building,” he said. “Student Services is on the lower level and the dining piece of it is on the upper main level. We kept open the kitchen, the servery area and the seating for about 200 students. The rest of the building was closed starting in August of last year. When we had Spring Break in March of this year, we closed the entire facility and put up a temporary service in an adjacent building. We had to produce the food in one of our kitchens and transport it over to that facility. We didn't serve a lot of students in the temporary facility, but it was enough so that we were able to handle that additional capacity at our other two dining centers.”
Going into the design of the facility, it was important that students could see their food being prepared in front of them. “The old facility had a large kitchen with production all in the back for the most part,” he said. “Our philosophy with that was to bring that production out in front of the students, so they could see us preparing the food fresh for them.” ...
This month marks two years that Theodore and Terrence Foster have been working together at Bryn Mawr Dining Services in Pennsylvania.
Both Theodore, the executive chef, and Terrence, the executive sous chef, gained interest in food from their mother, a teacher who had a side business as a pastry chef. “Our mom cooked us breakfast every morning, made our lunches and dinner for us every day,” said Theodore Foster. “When she made us breakfast, sometimes it would be eggs and stuff, and sometimes she would make fresh crepes. She turned us both on to cooking. A lot has to do with how she and my father raised us.”
Each took a different path to get to Bryn Mawr. “I started working in restaurants when I was 15,” said Terrence. “I did gourmet brick oven pizzas. I bussed. I did it all.”
Theodore did not start off with a culinary career in mind. “I went from lifeguarding to landscaping,” he said. “I did construction. I was all over the place and trying to figure out my way in life, and Terrence had more of a direction than I did.” ...
RECIPES: Shredded Kale Caesar and Smokey Bolognese, Arugula Linguine, Basil