5 (Quiet) Ways to Solve In-Class Hunger Pains

You know the drill. Before class you’re never hungry. During class you’re suddenly starving.  Nothing is more distracting than hunger pains. Snacking while listening can be the key to soaking up knowledge and stopping your awkward stomach grumbles from embarrassing you.  But the apple and chips in your bag need to go.  Crunching and spit-spraying are not classroom or library approved.

The school year just started, and you don’t want to alienate any potential friends/study buddies. And let’s not forget those less-than-desirable smells. Avoid tuna, garlic or any other smelly food that could fill a cramped classroom.  Be careful not to bring items that are common food allergies such as peanut butter. Even the smell can set off a classmate’s allergic reaction.

So now that we know the unspoken classroom food rules, let’s talk about the awesome snacks you CAN eat (& share)!

  1. Dried Fruit

This is a great healthy snack to bring to class. The chewiness doesn’t make much noise, and makes it fun to eat. Grab a bag at the Marketplace before class!

  1. Smoothie

We love this option because it’s completely soundless, yet packs a big punch.  Have a few classes in a row? Put in protein powder, flax seeds and even some spinach for extra power.

  1. Jerky

This snack may not be for everyone, but the protein content is super high. Protein is one of the top ingredients to kill hunger on the spot. Jerky lasts long, doesn’t smell and isn’t messy. Win-Win!

  1. Hummus & Pita Bread

Don’t worry vegetarians, we didn’t forget about you! Hummus is a great substitute for meat proteins. And the soft pita bread provides the carbs to keep your energy up all day long.

  1. Licorice

We all have a sweet tooth. Take the edge off with this low-sugar sweet. These are also great for sharing. So those group projects don’t have to be such a drag!

Grab one of these quiet, smell-free snacks, and get ready to soak up knowledge… no growling stomach involved!


5 Healthy Super Bowl Snacks

A healthy Super Bowl snack… Yes, it sounds like an oxymoron but hear us out. We promise this contradiction will leave your taste buds satisfied and guilt-free!

On Super Bowl Sunday, mindless eating is the name of the game. Millions of us will be eating a days worth of calories in just a few hours. The U.S. Calorie Control Council estimates that Americans pack away 11 million pounds of chips on Super Bowl Sunday alone!

We are here to make sure you don’t wake up on Monday morning regretting yesterdays’ festivities. So get your jersey on, paint your face and start prepping these tasty snacks before game time!

  1. Spinach Artichoke Dip

Replace the cheesy dip with this smooth, yummy spread. Grab whole-wheat crackers, celery or cucumbers for some crunch.


  1. Fruit Skewers

Fun, easy and sweet these skewers are a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth without the guilt. Pick fruit that has your team colors to make it even more festive!

  1. Berry Smoothie

Replace soda or beer with a smoothie. It’s a great drink to cool you down during those heated moments in the game!

  1. Apple Sandwich

Put peanut butter on an apple slice and then sprinkle chocolate chips and oats on top. This snack will give you the energy to cheer all game long.

  1. Nacho Kale Chip

Kale chips are one of the tastiest alternative to potato chips. They’ll leave you feeling full and they’re packed with nutrients!


Easy and healthy, these snacks will leave you and your friends feeling content and guilt-free. Now go enjoy the Super Bowl!!

The Surfing Chef

Yesterday I was able to have a chat with our Global Chef from Australia, Jason McDuie.

With his splendid accent, big smile, and tall chef hat he is a hard sight to miss.  And these past few weeks have been a whirlwind for McDuie.  Leaving his family back in Australia for a month, traveling for two days just to get here, all while trying to keep his chef hat on!  Even with the chaos, he has managed to keep a grin on his face while preparing us delicious cuisine.

Photo Oct 27, 12 32 36 PM

However, Chef McDuie is more then what meets the eye.  Cooking is not his only passion. Surfing will always hold a big place in his heart.  And McDuie was no run of the mill surfer!  He held sponsorships with big names such as Quicksilver and Oakley for over 14 years.


Once he decided to hop off the board and dive into the kitchen, he never forgot what surfing had taught him.  Using local seafood and produce from Australia is what fuels the inspiration for many of his dishes.

Photo Oct 27, 6 24 51 PM

So dive into Chef McDuie’s unique Australian cuisine tonight at the BARC.  Come talk to him about life down under, the wild waves he surfed, or whatever peeks your interest!


Actions Speak Louder Than Words

21 million children receive free and reduced price school meals every year.  However, during the summer months only a tenth have access to feeding programs.  Sodexo is helping you close the gap.

Feeding Our Future 2014 Results Infographic_tcm150-819752

Sodexo’s Stop Hunger programs are about action.  We’re done talking about the problem. We’re ready to talk about the solutions and show you how to contribute.  This is not about your neighbors, co-workers, or friends. This is about you, and how you can make a difference.

Feeding Our Future 2014 Results Infographic_tcm150-819752 (1)

Here’s how—Volunteering is one of the most rewarding ways to get involved.  Log on to the Sodexo Foundation website and click on Get Involved.  Choose the link that best suits your interests!  There are so many opportunities with programs like Feeding America, No Kid Hungry and Youth Service America.  Enter your zip code. The site will direct you towards your local service locations.


If your schedule is a bit tight this month, there are other ways to help!  Bring the fight of childhood hunger to your elected officials.  Social media is also a quick, easy way to do your part.  And never forget the power of a donation.  Those fighting hunger rely on your donations.

Help feed our future!

In Case You Missed It!

Serveathon Photo Contest & Results

This April, the Sodexo Foundation facilitated a photo contest centered around the platform Help Stop Hunger. The participants’ goal was to submit a photo that depicted a serveathon to Sodexo Foundation’s Facebook page, and have the public vote for their favorite one by “liking” it.


Our photo submission! Chef Tompall receiving a hug from a young guest at our Serveathon. The boy just wanted to show his gratitude, and melted our hearts in the process.

On April 30th, the voting period came to an end, and we are proud to announce that Zag Dining came in 1st place!!! I know, I know, you’re dying to know what the prize is, right?! First place receives a $3,000 grant that will be awarded to the charity of their choice. Pretty cool! Many thanks to everyone who “liked” our photo, and encouraged others to do the same — this was truly a joint effort! We look forward to furthering our community service efforts.

Real Food Challenge

The Real Food Challenge is a commitment to have 25% of the food served on campus be “real” by the year 2020. This means that 25% of the food that is served will be sourced from local and community-based providers who are fair, humane, and ecologically sound. Thayne McCulloh (President of Gonzaga), Chuck Faulkinberry (Sodexo’s District Manager), and Breanne Flynn (President of GU’s EAT Club), came together to speak briefly about the pledge and sign it in front of a crowd. It should be noted that we are receiving a lot of praise for our participation in this, as we are the FIRST Jesuit University to sign this pledge. Click here to see photos!

Earth Day & iCommit

To celebrate Earth Day, some of Zag Dining’s retail locations, along with the BARC served up some meals on firsbees instead of dishes {hello water conservation!}, and also put on a photo campaign! Individuals wrote how they were going to commit to being more green on a piece of recycled cardboard. They then posed for a photo holding their hand-made signs that were uploaded into an album that can be found here on our Facebook page.


Congratulations to all of the Zag Dining employees who participated in and survived this widely popular event! We produced 3 teams, one of which — Team Ketchup! — came in 10th place in the Corporate Cup. Amazing! This was a wonderful way for us to get involved with the community and get a little (okay, a LOT of) exercise. Go team!


Michelle Magni Is Baking Up Success at Gonzaga University


Go-to late night snack? Popcorn with coconut oil

Favorite pastry to make? Pithivier {A round, enclosed pie usually made by baking two disks of puff pastry, with filling stuffed in between.}

Best dinner at the BARC? Fish Tacos

Chef Michelle Magni started her career with Sodexo as a substitute lunch lady in a Western Washington school district.  She was drawn to the company after seeing how well they treated their employees.  The warm embrace she received from Sodexo was enough to inspire Michelle to reenter the workforce after her years as a stay-at-home mom.  Michelle did not, however, let her humble beginnings stop her from achieving her lifelong dream – to work in the kitchen.  

Staying within the Sodexo family, Michelle eventually came to Gonzaga University.  She was working in the catering department when a bakery position opened up.  Seeing her hard work and determination, Sodexo encouraged Michelle to get her pastry certification at the renowned Le Cordon Bleu College in Seattle, WA.  Originally, Michelle thought that working in the kitchen was “just a dream,” but she recognized an opportunity when she saw one.  Jumping on the opening, Michelle eventually graduated from Le Cordon Bleu with honors, on the President’s List, and with perfect attendance.  

Due to Michelle’s hard work and Sodexo’s support, the aspiring chef has since climbed the ranks and now serves as the head baker for Zag Dining at Gonzaga University.  She says that she is blessed to work amongst the chefs at Gonzaga, and truly appreciates the opportunities she has been given.  As an inspiration to all, Michelle tells other aspiring individuals to “ask questions, look to your fellow employees and don’t be afraid to go back to school.”  She reinvented her career at the age of forty, and proved you should never stop chasing your dreams.

Since getting the position, Michelle has prospered as one of Zag Dining’s top bakers.  Her favorite war story was baking the #1 cake that stretched fifteen feet down bulldog alley last year.  As if the sheer size of the cake was not enough of a challenge, she was also working in twenty-eight degree weather.  Lucky for us, however, Michelle not only completed the cake, but also made it absolutely delicious!  We later asked Michelle what the best part of being a chef is.  She simply smiled and said, “When people say, ‘No, no, no, please don’t leave that there, I’m getting so fat!”

Interview conducted by Elizabeth & Molly Bonoma.

Pithivier definition provided by Wikipedia.



In Case You Missed It! | Women’s History Month Recap

  • Last night, we hosted a dinner in the BARC to celebrate Women’s History Month.
  • Brochures featuring the following women-related content were made available at the front registers:
    • History
    • Trivia
    • Did you know?
  • Posters around the room displayed photos & background information of some well-known female chefs


  • The menu gave a nod to some notable female chefs:
    • Cristeta Comerford | Arroz Caldo {Filipino chicken fried rice}


    • Julia Child | Broccoli Cheddar Alfredo Penne & Reine De Saba Cake (not pictured)


    • Alice Waters | Tuna Nicoise Salad


    • Cat Cora | Chili Lime Flank Steak Tacos with Cilantro Rice & Black Beans


    • Judy Rodgers | Brown Butter Leek & Asiago Gnocchi






Bulldogs Score Big with Waste-Free Night

Basketball games at Gonzaga are an unforgettable experience. Students go to unbelievable lengths to get a seat at these games, one of the most notable being camping out in the snow. Due to the popularity of the sport, Zag Dining partnered with GU Athletics and student organizations to host their first Zero Waste event during a basketball game.


Our Zero Waste event took place on February 13th, as Men’s Basketball took on Pepperdine University. Zero Waste stations were setup around the arena and looked after by a large group of volunteers. The volunteers were made up entirely of student athletes who were there to make sure that there was no mix up in the process.

Fans were enthusiastic about the event and really embraced our goal of Zero Waste. Our results were phenomenal, as well. The grand total collected, including trash, was 1,105.2 lbs, but out of that, 954.8 lbs were compost and recycled materials.

  • 150.4 lbs of trash were collected
  • 364.3 lbs of recyclables were collected
  • 590.5 lbs of compost were collected

Overall, the night was a slam dunk, especially for the environment! Kelly Keller, Concessions Manager, said she hopes to one day make this a part of every basketball game. Thanks to everyone who participated in our Zero Waste Night!

Women’s History Month


Before 1970, women’s history was rarely a subject of conversation. Since then, however, it has undergone a massive transformation. Today, almost every college, including GU, offers women’s history courses. Most major graduate programs offer doctoral degrees in the field, as well.

The Women’s Movement 

The women’s movement of the 60s caused women to question their lack of visibility in traditional American history texts. The movement produced more female historians, in addition to a larger number of aspirations and opportunities amongst women. Carroll Smith-Rosenberg, one of the early women’s historians, has remarked that, “without question, our first inspiration was political. Aroused by feminist charges of economic and political discrimination . . . we turned to our history to trace the origins of women’s second-class status.” 

New Social History 

Women’s history was also part of a larger movement that transformed the study of American history. “History” had traditionally meant political history – a chronicle of the key political events, and the leaders (primarily men) who influenced them. But by the 1970s “the new social history” began replacing the older style. Emphasis shifted to a broader spectrum of American life, including such topics as the history of urban life, public health, ethnicity, the media, and poverty. 

The Personal Is Political 

Since women rarely held leadership positions, and until recently had only a marginal influence on politics, the new history, with its emphasis on the sociological and the ordinary, was an ideal vehicle for presenting women’s history. It has covered such subjects as the history of women’s education, birth control, housework, marriage, sexuality, and child rearing. As the field has grown, women’s historians realized that their definition of history needed to expand as well-it focused primarily on white middle-class experience and neglected the full racial and socio-economic spectrum of women. 

Women’s History Month

The public celebration of women’s history in this country began in 1978 as “Women’s History Week” in Sonoma County, California. The week including March 8, International Women’s Day, was selected. In 1981, Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) and Rep. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) co-sponsored a joint Congressional resolution proclaiming a national Women’s History Week. In 1987, Congress expanded the celebration to a month, and March was declared Women’s History Month. 

Information courtesy of Sodexo Net.

Zag Dining Spotlight Series | Liz Summers


Elizabeth Summers was born and raised in Spokane, Washington. When looking for jobs, she saw an advertisement on a website as a cook for Zag Dining and immediately knew she wanted to work within the Gonzaga community. She has worked for Sodexo for five and a half years and plans to further her career in the culinary field.

Have you always been interested in cooking and/or the food industry?
E: “Growing up, my mother always had me in the kitchen cooking and baking so I knew I would one day become a cook.”

What is your favorite dish to cook as well as your personal favorite dish?
E: “One of my favorite dishes to cook is smother burritos with Mexican rice. My personal favorite dish is sweet & sour chicken over jasmine rice with an Asian vegetable blend.”

What does a typical day look like for you?
E: “My typical day is getting up at 4 a.m. and getting ready for work. After work, I head home to cook dinner for my boyfriend and our two daughters, then do a little laundry, homework with the kids and get ready for bed.”

What do you like best about working for Sodexo?
E: “I love working for Sodexo because I learn something new every day. I love the students and the work environment.”

What changes would you like to see as well as features implemented in the new BARC?
E: “The BARC was an amazing kitchen to come to after being in the COG for five years. I would love to see more an of ice cream bar and a better system to the dish return area.”

Do you miss anything about the COG?
E: “I learned a lot working at the COG. The COG was old and needed to be replaced.”

What features do you like best about the BARC?
E: “The BARC is awesome! I love that it’s spaced out and more room to work. I also love the changes we make daily to better the BARC.”

Interview conducted by Leslie Jacobs // Graphics created by Courtney Mueller