National Conference Session Details

The Learning Sessions for the NACUFS 2022 National Conference will focus on delivering content in the domains aligned with the NACUFS Collegiate Dining Body of Knowledge™ . Additional details on the domains can be found at the bottom of the page.

General Session Details

Thursday, July 14, 8:45 - 10:05 a.m.

Let's REvisit the Topic of Food. How Important is it, Really?
Michael Ruhlman, author

Let’s REstart our national conference by revisiting the history, evolution, and experiences around food. How does food shape our lives through the lenses of physical and emotional wellbeing? It is a pure joy to be around food. The two-time Beard-Award-winning author and cook will talk about something too many people take for granted, food, or more precisely, the evolution of our thinking about food. Over the course of the quarter-century, Michael has been writing about chefs and the professional kitchen, from the CIA to The French Laundry to Anthony Bourdain and No Reservations. He will address food and its relationship to human evolution all the way up through the rise of the celebrity chef, the rise in food-related illness, and what the new food world will look like when we are finished with, or reconciled to, Covid. This is easy, because food is at the center of all of our lives.



Friday, July 15, 8:45 - 10 a.m.

Benefits and Myths of Contract Management (Part 1)
Jim Eickhoff, president, Creative Dining Services
Joe Fischioni, division president, western United States, Chartwells Higher Education Dining Services
Cam Schauf, director - campus dining services & auxiliary operations, University of Rochester
Moderated by William Anderson

NACUFS is composed of member institutions that run self-operated, contracted, and hybrid models of food service operations. This session will provide attendees with a great perspective on how contract companies can add value to their operation. Join this panel discussion to hear experts from large and small contract companies, along with representatives from NACUFS member institutions working with contractors, share insights on contract-managed operations. Discover why and how a contract company considers managing a dining program, what benefits they can bring to the table, and common myths about contract companies. During this rapid session we will ask the panelists candid and invigorating questions and the answers will generate insights while reigniting your curiosity about contract management companies. 


The Value of your Dining Program: College Leadership Perspective (Part 2)
Julie Bannister, assistant vice chancellor, auxiliary services, University of Pittsburgh
Dr. TJ Logan, associate vice president for residential experience, The Ohio State University
Pam Schreiber, assistant vice president for student life and executive director of housing & food services, University of Washington
Moderated by William Anderson

Collegiate foodservice leaders from across the country will share their perspectives on how collegiate dining programs contribute to the student experience. The panelists will discuss the value of dining programs and how they are viewed by college and university leadership and administrators and share the vision and direction for the future of college dining. Discover how Dining Services can collaborate with academic and administrative departments, the importance living lab dining can create for the student, and the core values every collegiate foodservice operator should consider. This rapid session will inform attendees on how college leaders view dining operations and how dining operators can reimagine their roles.



Saturday, July 16, 11:40 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Gen Alpha - Who Are They and How Should We Prepare to Serve Them?
Louie Gravance, owner, L. Gravance Creative Concepts
Ken Hughes, leading consumer & cyber behaviouralist and customer experience strategist
Mark McCrindle, McCrindle Research

Bush BrothersPlatinum Sponsor

Are you working on your dining master plan, building new operations, and/or renovating operations? Are you working on your succession plan or developing the future generation of leaders in our industry? Are you thinking about the next innovative Dining Plan or service method? If any or all answers are yes, you must attend this session. Most of the long-term, forward focused, and visionary work you are doing will primarily serve Generation Alpha. Join this session and hear from experts about how Generation Alpha may be similar or different from the other generations. When will they start to arrive on campus? What expectations might they bring with them? Attendees will also learn from service experts on how some of the most critical guest service expectations will apply to Generation Alpha. Discover how you can build a culture of a kind and authentic service that will also encourage the next generation to be kind and hospitality-focused.

Session Handouts


Super Session Details


Food Service and Supply Chain Trends - Make Your Own Predictions
Samantha Biljan, senior research analyst, Datassential
Joe Pawlak, managing principal, Technomic
Elaine Kleinschmidt, senior vice president, corporate brand, marketing and CX innovation, Aramark

Sponsored by: Rich Products

This session will be jam-packed with data shared by representatives from premier foodservice research companies and a large college and university food management company. Experts from Datassential, Technomic, and Aramark will share the information from their most up-to-date research, observations, and predictions.  This session will give us insight about how food consumers are trending, the state of our supply chain industry, and how college and university food service operators may consider acting on the information. Data will provide the critical information you need to predict the changes needed in your operation. Attendees will see how Gen Z and other consumer behavior may have changed due to the pandemic. Experts will share data on how the supply chain has been impacted during the pandemic and how that may have a lasting impact.

Session Handouts - Joe

Session Handouts - Sam

Learning Session Details

Learning sessions are listed in alphabetical order.


Building the Sustainable Menu Your Students Want
Chef Kathleen Hoffman, kitchens national sales senior culinary manager, US Foods
Hannah Koski, director of corporate social responsibility, US Foods

To build a sustainable and transparent menu, the first thing to understand is the wants and needs of the student diners. There is a way to balance sustainability and profitability through managing product assortment and inventory. This session will review the current statistics for the 18 to 25-year-old demographic, discuss current flavor trends and products, such as plant-based menu items, and how to successfully promote your menu within your college or university.

Session Handouts


Calibrating the Balance Between Residential & Retail Dining
Patrick Genest, director of client relations, University of Ottawa
David Porter, chief executive office, principal, social architect, Porter Khouw Consulting, Inc.

Have you asked yourself – do we need more retail dining options on campus? What changes can we make to strengthen our residential dining program? How can and should we ensure that our residential and retail dining options are balanced, provide optimum choices, and contribute to student success? In this session, two long-time collegiate foodservice veterans will show you how the University of Ottawa answered these questions and successfully recalibrated its campus dining program. In addition, learn strategies you can implement on your campus to ensure that residential and retail dining options remain balanced.


Communicating with Generation Z: Technology Solutions
Trail Bundy, marketing and communications manager, University of Montana Campus Dining, University of Montana

As Generation Z embarks on their journey through higher education, colleges and universities are faced with finding new ways to communicate with the students they serve. Using a variety of technological solutions, the University of Montana (UM) Campus Dining transformed its engagement with students. Initially, a product of the COVID-19 pandemic, UM Campus Dining transitioned from print collateral to digital as the primary means of conveying information to students. Through implementing nine unique programs focused on communication across digital displays, text-based communications, on-site live feedback, and mobile ordering regarding special events and the department’s initiatives, the students' cell phone is their one-stop-shop for information. Join this session to gain an overview of generational terms by age, receive recommendations on how to best target and reach students, and a glimpse into the current strategies and future plans as UM Campus Dining prepares to launch a new dining facility.


Content Expert to Teacher: How to Become a Great Facilitator
Gina Mouch, senior training specialist, University of Michigan Dining, MDining
Ashley Smith, student training and development specialist, University of Michigan, MDining

Do you have a fear of public speaking? Not sure where to start when preparing a presentation? Does silence when facilitating a discussion make you nervous? These will be discussed and more during this interactive session on facilitation training. You will walk away knowing how to build, present and facilitate training for any topic, build your confidence in your own presenting, and learn a format to teach your colleagues to be rock star presenters too!

Session Handouts



Creating a Dining Experience Free From Germs and Harsh Chemicals
Dr. Dawn Yeomans, hygiene sciences and partnerships senior advisor, GOJO Industries, Inc.

Collegiate dining programs are at the core of a campus’ culture, and guest experience is more important than ever. Facility cleanliness is critical, but collegiate diners also want confidence that the facilities contribute positively toward their overall health and well-being. Unfortunately, some products that facilities rely on to provide germ protection may not be the safest options, and some may actually pose potential health risks to diners. Attend this session and learn how to identify and select hygiene products that holistically provide healthy environments to positively impact student satisfaction, overall dining facility sales, and trust.

 Session Handouts

Engagement: It's a Belief, Not a Program
Ray Kohl, director of marketing and communications, University at Buffalo Campus Dining and Shops
Chuck Nicosia, general manager, University at Buffalo Campus Dining and Shops

Everyone at the University at Buffalo Campus Dining and Shops has a common vision...a belief about what we want our company to be and how we want it to grow. That vision is rooted in our philosophy, and each of our 1,300 employees believes in it. Everyone has a memorable experience at the University at Buffalo. In 2019, Campus Dining and Shops launched GuestQuest, a multidimensional cultural improvement process that drives exemplary experiences throughout our operations. Discover what GuestQuest is, why and how it was developed, and the impact it has had on operations.

 session handouts


foodservice concept development
lance reynolds, director, roc strategy & process leader, us foods
erin sponaugle, restaurant operations consultant field leader, us foods

this session will discuss foodservice concept development while understanding advancements in automation and technology, menu trends, and needs for the college and university demographic. the idea of creating a new foodservice concept can be daunting, but when we break it down into a playbook, it not only becomes much more feasible, but an exciting new venture to take on. student diners depend on college and university foodservice to provide them convenient, nutritious, and delicious meal options. restaurant operations consultants from us foods will discuss concept opportunities based on current flavor trends, products important to the student market, and automation that can improve operational efficiencies. in addition, this session will cover the us foods ghost kitchen playbook, product assortment, inventory management, the benefits of partnering with a distributor to optimize innovation, and how to staff foodservice concepts most effectively.



leveraging technology to enhance efficiency & guest experience
ben anderson, director, grubhub campus
nate darder, associate director of administration and planning, the ohio state university

get an in-depth look at the ohio state university's foodservice program and how they use technology to increase efficiency and enhance the guest experience. take a deep dive into their implementation of delivery robots, lockers, and other technology solutions to meet customers where they are while optimizing for the evolving labor environment. understand the critical considerations driving innovation across campus and the foodservice industry as a whole.

 Session Handouts


Living our Mission of Sustainability
Steve Giardini, senior associate director of dining, University of Michigan, MDining
Keith Soster, director of sustainability, student & community engagement, University of Michigan, MDining

Sustainability on any campus can be an intimidating and constantly moving target. Layer on Dining’s mission and values and then the institution’s mission and values, and suddenly there is a lot of work. How do you put it all together in an organized fashion and “live into” everything? Can you develop a program that allows alignment with campus culture, mission, and strategies while engaging and exciting students? We will share how MDining has engaged students in the work regarding sustainability while living into our mission and that of the university. This session will focus on the work being done on campus to address our sustainability goals while being thoughtful of our mission and values. We will discuss our work through the lens of transformative learning experiences, community development, social justice and intercultural development, health and wellness, leadership, and personal development. We will share what we’ve done to structure the work and engage the community, all while “telling the story”, to ensure our brand is well represented. We will share examples, offer ideas to get organized, and answer questions in regard to what worked and what didn’t.

 Session Handouts


More Than a Meal: Transforming Our Campus
Dustin Cutler, executive director, Cornell Dining

Collegiate dining involves more than putting delicious food onto plates; it is defined by the relationships with its institution, its students, its community, and most importantly, its managers and front-line associates. This session will provide insight on how building a foundation of strategic partnerships through organizational structure, community support, and investing in your most important asset (your people), can prepare you to plan and grow successfully through even the most challenging times. Participants will be given tools to bring back to their organizations. There is no better time than now to focus on strategy for the future!

 Session Handouts


Reimagining Food Services and the Traditional Dining Hall
Stephen Shaheen, chief executive officer and founder, DTG
Phillip Harty, vice president, Sodexo

It has been nearly two years since COVID first upended the lives of nearly twenty million US college students. There is no question – the pandemic has wreaked havoc on college campuses like all other congregate settings. That part is well known. The creative ways schools have responded to ensure that student and staff needs are met safely and without disruption are not as well known. This session highlights the challenges that campus dining services faced during COVID, the prolonged issues the pandemic has caused, and how some schools have pivoted to creatively address changing needs for safe and healthy on-campus food and beverage services. The session will also share innovations in mobilized food stations and what foodservice directors need to take into consideration before selecting one.

 Session Handouts


Reinventing an Icon - The Process to Gluten, Tree & Peanut Free
Kimberle Badinelli, business advisor/consultant, Hospitality Systems, LLC
Patti Klos, director, Tufts Dining, Tufts University
Jesse Leal, associate director dining services and planning, Tufts University
Pasquale Napolitano, unit manager, Carmichael Dining Center, Tufts University

How do you transform an icon of your dining program to reflect the ever-increasing need to provide diverse foods for everyone in your community? As collegiate dining programs face more health-related dining needs and preferences, dining programs face innovation opportunities to meet those needs. Learn more on how Tufts Dining utilized a systematic approach to transform one of its residential venues into a gluten, tree-nut, and peanut-free facility with an amazing menu – providing a place where everyone at Tufts University can eat and eat well!

 Session Handouts


Seven Successful Strategies to Boost Meal Plan Revenues
Mike Kosevich, director of culinary services, Montana State University
David Porter, chief executive officer, principal, social architect, Porter Khouw Consulting, Inc.

Dining and meal plan programs are the backbones of any campus dining program, and they can be a key influencing factor in a student's decision to live on or off-campus. They can also play a critical role in the value (or lack thereof) that meal plan holders assign to the campus dining program, student life experience, and overall student success. Discover seven successful strategies foodservice directors can implement to boost meal plan participation, commuter student participation, and customer satisfaction. Ensure that your meal plan options and the dining program offer a competitive edge in retention, recruitment, and a vibrant campus community.



The Evolution of Supply Chain Communication Strategies
Janet Adams, business development, Fair Market Inc.
Kimberle Badinelli, business advisor/consultant, Hospitality Systems, LLC

The pandemic changed a few things, and the way we communicate with suppliers and how they communicate with us is no exception. In a world where supply guarantees are no longer as stable as they once were, the traditional methods of communicating our needs now include different approaches, agile management, flexibility, and old-fashioned transparency. This session will focus on what the supply chain is experiencing and what strategies work best for dining operators to communicate their needs.

 Session Handouts


To El Salvador and Back
Andrieu Doyle, director of origin operations, Hubbard & Cravens Coffee Co.
Kathy Grant, assistant director, Student Life Dining Services, The Ohio State University

To aid a farmer in improving his quality, The Ohio State University Student Life Dining Program and Hubbard & Cravens Coffee and Tea traveled to the furthest reaches of El Salvador. Discover how research, technology, service, and coffee helped build community and engagement.

 Session Handouts


UT Farm Stand: Modeling a Sustainable Food System on Campus
Alejandra Marquez, sustainability coordinator, University Housing and Dining, University of Texas – Austin

College students today care deeply about sustainability. They are actively engaged in their university’s efforts to meet climate-related targets and often drive demand for environmentally-focused programs and services. That is why we believe students are best equipped to lead the way towards a sustainable foodservice model. In this session, UT Austin will share insights from its flagship Housing and Dining program - UT Farm Stand - and discuss how dining professionals can leverage students’ perspectives to create a campus-valued food program.

 Session Handouts

Learning Session Domains

Business Administration Domain

Sessions in this domain focus on planning, systems, and business functions required to operate, enhance, and fund a campus-valued dining program

Talent Management Domain

Sessions in this domain focus on recruitment and selection, development, and engagement of personnel (including student employees) in order to operate a successful collegiate dining operation.

Guest Experience Domain

Sessions in this domain focus on providing an exceptional collegiate dining guest experience.

Campus & Community Engagement Domain

Sessions in this domain focus on collaborative alignment with campus culture, mission, and strategies (including student engagement) as well as developing successful brand recognition through effective marketing.

Professional Intelligence Domain

Sessions in this domain focus on driving an ethical, organized environment that promotes high standards of integrity and inclusivity, effectively modeling responsible stewardship of campus resources, and leading and promoting organization initiatives and change.