Scrolling Headlines:

UMass professor wins big on ‘Jeopardy!’ -

January 23, 2017

SGA president selects new vice president -

January 23, 2017

UMass women’s basketball blows 15 point fourth quarter lead, loses in double overtime to George Washington -

January 23, 2017

UMass club hockey falls to NYU 3-2 in first game back from vacation -

January 23, 2017

Cyr: Expectations for UMass men’s basketball remain consistent throughout 2016-17 season -

January 23, 2017

The death penalty is not the answer -

January 23, 2017

Donald Trump is gutting journalism with his Twitter -

January 23, 2017

Winter break’s most overlooked releases -

January 23, 2017

Hardly anything in ‘Rogue One’ scores a direct hit -

January 23, 2017

Nineteen turnovers sink UMass men’s basketball in loss to Fordham Saturday -

January 21, 2017

UMass men’s basketball falls to Fordham behind strong defensive effort by the Rams -

January 21, 2017

UMass hockey can’t take advantage of strong start in 6-1 loss to Boston College -

January 21, 2017

High-powered Eagles soar past UMass -

January 21, 2017

UMass women’s basketball suffers disappointing loss to St. Bonaventure at Mullins Center Thursday -

January 19, 2017

REPORT: Tom Masella out as defensive coordinator for UMass football -

January 19, 2017

Zach Lewis, bench carry UMass men’s basketball in win over St. Joe’s -

January 19, 2017

UMass women’s basketball handles Duquesne at home -

January 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball’s late comeback falls short after blowing 15-point first-half lead -

January 15, 2017

UMass hockey outlasted at home against No. 6 UMass Lowell -

January 14, 2017

Hailey Leidel hits second buzzer beater of the season to give UMass women’s basketball win over Davidson -

January 13, 2017

UMass Dining Services cook up two new national awards

In recognition of its achievements, the University of Massachusetts Dining Services received two second place awards over the past summer from the National Association of College and University Food Services’ national conference held in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

The NACUFS conference is an annual gathering of directors and managers of university dining services from around the country. With over one thousand attendees, the conference features educational seminars and numerous prestigious award presentations.

UMass Dining entered two categories in the Loyal E. Horton Dining Award competition. The award, which is named for a NACUFS founder, gives recognition to the most successful ideas in menus, presentations, special events planning and new dining concepts. UMass Dining was awarded second place in the Residence Hall Dining and Catering Special Event categories, which are two of the most competitive categories, with over one hundred entries among them.

UMass Dining attributes its Residence Hall Dining award to its innovative Stealth Health program. Stealth Health features a menu of flavorful, healthy options for students without specifically labeling them as being healthy. The menu offers increased options of proteins and fish, healthy carbohydrates, fresh locally grown produce and uses less salt in food preparation.

The Catering Special Event award was based on the Renaissance Banquet at Memorial Hall, which is a themed event featuring actual renaissance recipes and creative food displays. The event, featuring costumed staff and décor, encouraged the guests to eat with their hands. Ken Toong, executive director of dining and retail services at UMass, said the biggest challenge was conducting the event off site in Memorial Hall, a building with no kitchen facilities.

Toong is very proud of UMass Dining’s recent achievements.

“They were highly competitive categories, and we lost slot machines by less than one point each,” he said. “Placing second twice in one of the most competitive categories is no small task, and our dining programs have been in the top three for the past five consecutive years, which speaks highly of our commitment to outstanding quality and service.

“We were pleased with the results, but disappointed in not receiving first place gold medals in both categories. On the other hand, UMass Dining has been a perennial winner for the Loyal E. Horton Awards,” Toong added.

Since 2000, UMass Dining has received 13 awards and has achieved a reputation for being one of the most renowned university dining services in the country. In 2007, UMass Dining was awarded the grand prize and the gold medal for the Residence Hall Dining Multi-Concepts category. In 2008, Toong”s team won a silver medal in the category of Residence Hall Dining.

“We believe in continuous improvement and success is never final. I think we strive to be the most innovative university in the country,” he said.

Under Toong”s leadership, UMass Dining promotes sustainability and is a leader in buying local with over 25 percent of its produce purchased locally in 2009. Toong and his staff also promote global eating with menus featuring dishes from around the world.

Toong and his team have big ambitions for the 2009-2010 academic year, which will begin throughout the campus with the elimination of food trays in all the Dining Commons and in retail dining areas. Additionally students on the meal plan will receive a free stainless steel water bottle for use to take with them in order to reduce the amount of throw-away paper cups used at the DCs. Free Friday night dinners at the DC and enhancing the breakfast menu with breakfast pizzas, burritos and hot cereals are but a few of the changes students can expect to see this fall.

Vincent Capone can be reached at

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