Terp Street Market Introduces Healthier Options to the Dining Hall

By Katy Kelly
For Unwind magazine

It seems these days that everyone is trying their best to stay fit and eat healthy. Gym memberships are increasing nationwide and every cooking magazine on the racks is bursting with healthy holiday recipes.

With the trend of healthy lifestyles on the rise, would we really expect the South Campus Dining Hall to be any different?

Photo courtesy of SustainableUMD

Photo courtesy of SustainableUMD

The South Campus Dining Hall has made significant changes to its menu in an attempt to increase the variety of healthy food choices for students. Terp Street Market, hosted by the South Campus Dining Hall once a month, is an opportunity for students to sample and purchase fresh, locally-grown produce. The best part? Students get to use their dining points to purchase these goods.

Dining Services representative Bart Hipple described the market as “a way to give students access to free, local products with an event that is totally different than other events in the dining hall, and for all of us to have some fun!”

“Terp Market was the brainchild of Chef Judith Rodriguez and the South Campus Dining Hall team,” Hipple said. “Products are supplied by the South Campus Dining Hall. [The] chef orders in special products, containers, and decorations. There is fresh whole produce, attractively packaged specialty food, and delicious treats.”

Each month the Dining Hall hosts the market, there is a different theme corresponding with that season.

“The staff creates custom foods to match the theme of that particular market,” Hipple said.

However, senior accounting and information systems major Victoria Bowcutt does not think once a month is enough.

“I wish they had it more than once a month,” she said. “I like being able to use dining points for things I can take home and use for a while.”

Bowcut said she has been on the dining plan for her four years at the university.

“I think [Dining Services] has made a lot of strides in the past couple of years,” she said. “This year they came out with the Smart Choice option for the value meal, and they introduced more healthy options on the weekends, because before there really weren’t healthy options on the weekends.”

South Campus Dining Hall food manager Judith Marie Hernandez stressed the importance of healthy eating options in the diner, and has been the leading force in a lot of the changes we have seen in meal options.

“As a vegetarian myself, I understand the importance of the students wanting to eat healthier meals,” Hernandez said. “I call Terp Street Market my baby. I love doing this every month, not only for the students, but also for my staff.”

She said she came up with the idea because she wanted to do something like the farmer’s market outside of Cole Field House, but for students eating at the dining halls.

Yasmeen H.A., a freshman enrolled in letters and sciences, said she has never heard of Terp Market but would definitely go.

“I think it’s a really good idea if it’s going to promote healthy eating,” H.A. said. “They should put up more posters and things so more people hear of it.”

Hernandez agreed with this, saying she would love to see students talking about Terp Street Market on social media.

“I think more students would come and check it out if they knew their friends enjoyed it also,” Hernandez said.

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