Dining at New Hall and Neptune Hall will be even tastier this month thanks to a team of students from NIU’s Dietetic Internship (DI) program. From Harry Potter-inspired dishes to a taste of Narnia, diners will be treated to something special during these fantasy-themed events.
“I hope students enjoy a delicious meal, take pictures and create lasting memories with their friends,” said Dietetics Intern, Shalyn Houston.
Houston is part of Nutrition 617 – Food Systems Management, a master’s level course where students take everything they’ve learned and apply it in a real-world situation. From choosing a theme to planning menu and testing out recipes that will delight diners, the Dietetic Interns are showcasing their talents to the Huskie community.
“Our special dinner gives us the opportunity to use everything we’ve learned in our food service rotation, especially our management skills, to have a successful night,” Houston said.
Things like muggle stew, Voldemort flatbread pizza and Hufflepuff pastries will debut in New Hall. At Neptune, diners will have the chance to sample Snipe chicken breasts and British roasted vegetables among other delights. It will be a memorable event for all involved.
“We are hopeful that the diners receive the whole Narnia experience from the food and drinks to the decorations,” said Keygan Balaja, who is working on the Neptune Hall dinner. “We are looking forward to seeing our work come together by providing the students with a fun opportunity to socialize with friends and try new foods.”
Nancy Prange, Dietetic Internship program coordinator, said the annual event is known to draw additional diners – like family members and friends from around campus – which makes it even more special.
“What is really nice about this special dinner is that it’s a win-win,” Prange said. “My students are getting this valuable experience, and the students and diners who come to the residence hall really enjoy those meals. It really builds a lot of community.”
Along with a sense of community, Prange said it provides NIU students with important skills that prepare them for their career.
“The internship has certain competencies that need to be met, and this project touches upon a lot of those competencies,” Prange said. “Our goal is really to help them develop management skills in a food service setting so they can take that skill set with them when they graduate.”
Dietetic Interns Special Dinners
New Hall – Harry Potter-themed dinner
Oct. 20 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Neptune Hall – Narnia-themed dinner
Oct. 21 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.