Sodexo introduces new food item options for Wilkes students

Samantha Earley, Correspondent

Wilkes students who are rushing between classes no longer have to choose between hunger and getting to class on time. Now those students can get a sandwich or salad, soda or bottle of water and a bag of chips, piece of fresh fruit or cookie for a simple meal.
The university’s dining service provider, Sodexo, has introduced Resident Express to Rifkin Café, located at the entrance of Rifkin.
Resident Express was designed as a meal plan for students who dine in the Henry Student Center, but don’t have the time to visit the dining hall or want to avoid lines during its busiest operation hours.
Sodexo introduced a few new items and changed a few of the classic recipes. The biggest change is the new menu, called Fresh2.
“The new menu is based upon trends and student preferences and delivers a new type of variety into the menu,” Jason Klinetob, marketing coordinator for Sodexo Dining Services said. “We know from our student research that adding an increasing number of choices to the daily menu is not the same thing to as adding variety. Students want different high-quality choices every day – a mixture of innovative trendy choices and comfort food from home – and this menu provides that.”
The offerings include an abundance of fresh seasonal produce, and half of all menu choices meet wellness criteria for reducing fat, calories, sodium and other nutritional attributes as defined by Sodexo’s registered dietitians. The nutrition information is communicated on Sodexo’s Mindful Menu signs.
The food services revamped its Red Hot Chef station into a Mindful station.
“Mindful are foods that balance nutrition with enticing flavors to create an indulgent way to enjoy health,” Klinetob said.
The company’s hope is that making “mindful choices” becomes second nature for students in the workplace and at home with their families.
Sodexo has added a vegan bar near the vegetarian station to offer patrons more of what they’ve been asking for and meet the continuing dietary restrictions.
“I’m happy to say we now have a soy milk dispenser,” Klinetob said.
A few ideas are in the works for next semester but nothing has been finalized yet, Klinetrob said. Sodexo will be taking the feedback that has been provided to them in the last few weeks from the dining surveys and use it to improve make the dining experience in all of its locations.
Klinetrob said students should always be on the lookout for new items added to the menu each week. It will  introduce foods from different regions or past favorites during Late Nite dining.
He said Sodexo also takes menu suggestions into consideration when creating later menus. If students have a favorite food item from home, they can write it on a comment card, fill out the online feedback form or send it to dining services through an email.