A Week in 5C DiningApril 12, 2023
An aspect to consider when deciding what college to attend that sometimes is forgotten is dining. This can include food allergies, dietary restrictions, and/or individual preferences. My experience so far at Mudd has shown me that they put consideration into each of these aspects. The dining hall at HMC, which we call “the Hoch”, has a section dedicated to food that does not contain key allergens: Simple Servings. It also has a fridge specifically for the same purpose. The Hoch also has a section with only vegetarian and vegan options called Veggie Valley. Additionally, there are usually vegetarian options offered in the different stations of the dining hall.
As part of the Claremont Colleges Consortium, we are able to access the dining halls of any of the 5 colleges. This allows for a wider variety of dining options so that students may more easily find food that matches their preferences.
To provide a sense of what daily dining at the 5C’s can look like, I will share some of the meals I enjoyed on campus from the past week.
The Hoch operates by stations with food of different themes for students to serve themselves. One of the sections (sometimes two) has food that is prepared at the moment by the dining hall staff. The type of meal that is prepared on this station varies every dining period. An example of this is that on Fridays for lunch, this section serves ramen, where the noodles are heated and mixed in the broth the moment you order. Although the wait time is generally longer (10-20 minutes), it has the benefit of being warm and made in the moment.
During the weekends, the dining halls operate with a brunch and dinner schedule. I usually enjoy brunch at Mallot, Scripps’ dining hall. On Saturdays for brunch they always serve acai bowls, one of my favorite meals. It has become a tradition among my friends to head to Mallot every Saturday morning for their acai bowls.
Additionally, there are always various events and activities happening around campus where food is offered. This past week, we had a diversity and sustainability fair, which had a food truck. Students that attended and participated in the fair were able to get a vegan meal! Events that offer free food can be a nice variation from the food from the dining halls without having to leave campus.
As there can always be room for improvement, the staff overall is very open and willing to receive suggestions. The dining hall director, Miguel, can always be seen walking around the Hoch and the rest of campus, eager to talk to students and hear their opinions. I remember meeting Miguel on my first week at Mudd and him immediately being very approachable and interested in knowing what I thought of the dining hall so far. Additionally, there are representatives from each dorm, called food reps, that serve as a connection between the student body and dining hall administrators. These groups meet weekly to discuss any concerns, ideas and suggestions that the students have.