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Environmental Leadership Awards

The Environmental Leadership Awards (ELAs) presented by UConn’s Office of Environmental Policy, were created as a way to honor those individuals that have truly excelled in their efforts to contribute to environmental awareness and promote progress in our ‘green’ efforts. These individuals have worked with other groups to make real, immediate improvements in the sustainability of our campus and beyond.

A winner is selected for each of the major categories: Undergraduate Student, Graduate Student, University Faculty/Administrator, and Staff. There are also ELA awards given to UConn-Affiliated Groups (e.g., Clubs, Organizations, Centers or Institutes), Alumni, and Special Recognition/External groups and individuals who have made significant contributions in executing major projects and initiatives for the University of Connecticut.

Presenting the awards was Dr. Gene Likens, UConn’s Special Advisor to the President on Environmental Affairs and Distinguished Professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology. Dr. Likens, a world renowned scientist, discovered acid rain.

Congratulations to all the winners!


Dining Services Wins the Staff Group Award

Dining Services staff: Rob Landolphi, Mike White, Tracey Roy and presenter Dr. Gene Likens



Dining Services’ Spring Valley Student Farm Wins the Student Group Award



Julia Cartabiano, Manager of Spring Valley Student Farm, Wins the Staff Award


The Beanery will Present “Open Mic Night”

Are you looking for a stage on which to perform, play music, read poetry, etc? The Beanery Cafe, located in the Benton Museum, will offer an open mic night every Tuesday evening beginning this fall semester. Contact for more information.

Theodore W. Minah Distinguished Service Award

NACUFS has named Dennis Pierce from the University of Connecticut as the recipient of the 2016 Theodore W. Minah Distinguished Service Award, the association’s highest individual honor.

Originally established in 1967 as the Distinguished Service Award, the award was renamed in 1973 to honor the first recipient, Theodore W. Minah. The award is presented annually in recognition of exemplary and enduring contributions to the foodservice industry and to the association. The NACUFS board of directors and council of past presidents select the recipient from among nominations submitted by the NACUFS membership.

“This year’s recipient is a person who has demonstrated his passion for the industry, NACUFS, institution, family, and community,” said Leonard Hodgson, a past president of NACUFS. “At every step in his organization, he is providing programs for the staff to be the best at their job.” It was also said that Dennis lives the philosophy of It matters not what I achieve, but what I aspire for others.

Pierce’s 42 years of professional achievements include establishing a highly-respected sustainability program, implementing a trayless dining environment, earning a Gold LEED certification after renovating an existing dining facility, contributing a monthly column for The Ground Up, receiving two Connecticut Journalism awards, making award-winning recipes, and co-managing a weekly sustainable organic Storrs Farmers Market.


Dennis Pierce has given many years of service to NACUFS. He served as the national publications officer, board member, board president, national conference co-chair, northeast regional conference co-chair, and national conference education co-chair. Pierce says of his award, “I am honored to be recognized by my peers by being awarded the most prestigious award that NACUFS bestows. I am one who believes that although it is the individual who receives the award, it is shared with those individuals who saw potential in me, provided opportunities for growth, and encouraged my career and participation in an outstanding association, NACUFS.”

Pierce received the award on Wednesday, July 14 at the NACUFS 2016 National Conference in Anaheim, California.

Gold Medal Best Vegan Recipe

UConn Dining Services has won the Gold Award for the Best Vegan Recipe in the 2016 Nutrition Awards contest.

Vegan Crab Cakes



UConn will be recognized during the Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards Luncheon, taking place on Saturday July 16 at 1pm in Anaheim, CA.


MyUConn App

New and Improved MyUConn Mobile App

UITS has launched a revamped version of myUConn, the university’s mobile app and a connection to campus and course information.

The new myUConn app, powered by Kurogo, focuses on enhancing the mobile experience:

  • It works on any size Android and iOS device. You can download the app from the Apple App Store or Google Play Store.
  • For other types of phones and tablets, you can access the same functionality on the mobile site:
  • Current myUConn HD iPad/Andriod tablet users are encouraged to remove their existing app and download this release of myUConn.

This version of the myUConn app also includes a new maintenance module, which integrates with Facilities Operations’ IT systems. With this new module, you can notify Facilities Operations of maintenance and repair items in dorms and around campus. With intelligent location services included in the module, you can pinpoint the problem, even if you are unsure of the exact site.

More modules as well as improved features are coming. You can learn more at

For more information, contact: Mobile Team at

UConn Dining Services 15th Annual Culinary Competition

The Every year Dining Services Chefs have an opportunity to duke it out and exhibit their culinary skills in our annual Culinary Olympics. We bring in special guest judges from around the area to exert their palates to some very creative culinary experiments. And, all are welcome to stop in and cheer on or jeer on your favorite Chefs.

This year the event will took place at the South Campus / Rome Ballroom located at the University of Connecticut, Storrs Campus on Thursday January 15, 2015. Each year, the creative Dining Services’ chefs seem to raise the culinary bar even higher and this year’s entries were no exception!

We are excited to announce the winners of this year’s Culinary Competition.


Winners in the Appetizer Category

  • 1st Place: Hector Vega – Seasons of Gazpacho
  • 2nd Place: Alexis Saucier – Tuna Watermelon Crudo
  • 3rd Place: Erik Larkin – Shepherd’s Pie Eggroll

Winners in the Entrée Category

  • 1st Place: Hector Vega – Steak and Egg Open Faced Sandwich with Yucca Fries
  • 2nd Place: Scott Chapman – Blue Crab and Shrimp Taco with Mango Pico de Gallo
  • 3rd Place: Gary Ellis – Bourbon Glazed Bacon Explosion with Smashed Potatoes, Cracklin’ Green Beans and Honey Applesauce

Winners in the Dessert Category

  • 1st Place: Frank Cameron – Gluten Free Carrot Cake
  • 2nd Place: Bill McKay – Five Citrus Ginger Sorbet
  • 3rd Place: Alexis Saucier – Maple Flan with Sautéed Pears


The surprise basket given to each team contained the following ingredients: Romanesco, Duck Breast, Raisin Juice, Gojuchang (hot red pepper sauce), Molasses Ginger Cookies and Candy Canes. From those ingredients teams had 75 minutes to prepare three different tapas, or appetizers.

1st Place: Team 5, University Catering – Hector Vega, Alexis Saucier, Christina Brault

  • Appetizers Created: Ginger Garlic Crostini with Seared Raisin, Chili Duck Breast, Molasses Ginger Duck Stew served with Romanesco Puree, Five Spice Pancake with Ginger Peppermint Sauce

2nd Place: Team 3, South Dining – Ann Marie Meres, Charlie String, Pashupati

  • Appetizers Created: Duck Breast Stuffed with Mushroom Duxelle and Raisin Glaze, Romanesco and Asparagus Timbale with Red Pepper Paste, Molasses Blini with Fruit Compote

3rd Place: Team 10, Central Production Kitchen (CPK) – Shawn Fitzgerald, Kim Spaulding, Heidi Howlett

  • Appetizers Created: Duck Crostini with Mango Salsa Gojuchang Sauce, Asian Romanesco Quesadilla with Cilantro Lime Viniagrette, Holiday Parfait with Peppermint


Schedule of Events

9:30am Chef Demo

Crispy skin duck breast, spinach & bacon risotto, and a blackberry gastrique.

Jason St. Onge

G-7 Catering Company, Thompson, CT

Jason St. Onge

The “Recipe Contest” that is scheduled to begin at approximately 8:30am. Recipes must be prepared on site for 12 portions, and must fall into one of the following categories: Appetizer / Entrée / Dessert. Recipes will then be judged on the following criteria: Clarity of Recipe / Creativity of Dish / Cooking Techniques / Use of Ingredients / Taste and Texture.

10:30am-12:15pm Recipe Contest Judging


Chef Jason St. Onge, G-7 Catering Company,

Chef Barbarellen Olsen, Culinary Department Head, Windham Technical High School,

Dan Doerr, University of Connecticut, Assistant to the Vice President for Planning and Assessment & Director of Senior Transition Programs.

Chef Will Deason, Willimantic Brewing Company / Main Street Café


10:30am-1:30pm UConn Bakery Demos and Displays

Stop by and learn the art of decorating from our professional pastry chefs and bakers.


12:30pm-4:45pm “Boiling Point” Competition

This is our version of the “Iron Chef” competition that will involve teams of three chefs representing the different dining facilities within the department. Each team will be presented with a mystery box of ingredients, and using miscellaneous items from our pantry, prepare three different Tapas (small food or appetizer) on each plate. Teams will have 75 minutes to prepare their dishes for 4 judges. Teams will then be scored on the following criteria: Creativity of dish / Cooking Techniques / Use of Ingredients / Taste and Textures. (Teams are not allowed to bring ingredients, or use ingredients that are not supplied by competition)


Chef Christopher Prosperi, Chef-Owner, Metro Bis Restaurant.

Rand Richards Cooper, Novelist, Longtime Food and Travel writer and Food Critic with The New York Times.

Chef Marc Hussey, Culinary Consultant for the Connecticut Technical High School System.

Chef Carl Stafford, Professor of Hospitality Management, Manchester Community College.

Award Presentation immediately following Boiling Point


UConn Co-op Bookstore will have an array of cookbooks by various authors available for purchase at the event.