26. Northeastern University, Boston, MA
Dining Head: Maureen Timmons, Director of Dining Services for Northeastern
Total Enrollment: 22,452
Students Living on Campus: 9,000
No. of Meal Plans Sold: 15,554 (2013-2014)
Annual Dining Program Revenues: $40 million
Cost Range of Residential Meal Plans: $365-$3,395
No. of Residential Dining Halls/Commons: 4
No. of Retail Outlets: 27
Contractors: Chartwells and other individual vendors
2013 FM Best Concept winner Curry Student Center is just the latest on a growing list of award-winning dining locations across Northeastern’s campus. Other recent additions/upgrades include Café716 with its selection of local brands plus a unique pour over coffee experience with local favorite Flat Black Coffee. There is also Zone 7, a residential dining station that prepares entrées and sides without using seven major food allergens, and the Hungry Hungry Husky food truck.
Northeastern Dining has partnered closely with the Green Restaurant Association (GRA) and the campus-wide commitment to sustainability has resulted in receiving 3-Star Green Restaurant certifications at two dining locations and 2-Star certifications at 14 others. Sustainability is also emphasized in the kitchens, where meals are prepared in small batches to reduce waste and serve the freshest food possible.
Digital signage and various social media networks are used to promote special events, especially in the Xhibition Kitchen, which hosts interactive cooking programs such as guest chef demos and cookbook signings. Among the more than 300 events Xhibition Kitchen has hosted in the past decade were presentations from over two dozen James Beard Award winners, including Jacques Pepin, Ming Tsai and Amanda Hesser as well as TV personalities like Food Network’s Alex Guarnaschelli.
Other annual signature events include pumpkin carving and gingerbread house contests in the fall to Mardi Gras and “Lobstah Night” celebrations in the spring. The spring semester concludes with Educate Your Palate, a special dinner themed to bring students an educational culinary experience.