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WVU Dining Services welcomes new Student Dining Committee members

New members of the WVU Student Dining Committee have been chosen to serve during the 2023-2024 academic year. Formed last year, the committee ensures students have a voice and involvement in WVU Dining Services’ current and future decisions, initiatives and offerings.

Committee members meet twice a month to share feedback on their own dining experiences, as well as those of fellow students, to ensure WVU continues to meet the dining needs and expectations of all Mountaineers.

WVU Student Dining Committee
Back row (left to right): Evan Jacobsen (Area General Manager for Sodexo), Corey Farris (Dean of Students), Erin Newmeyer (AVP for Strategic Initiatives), Clayton Cappellanti (Director of Dining Services), Mary Jo Thompson (Project Manager for Strategic Initiatives), Leighann Scott (Dietitian for Dining Services), Michael Dahl (District Manager for Sodexo); Front row (left to right): Alec Jacobsen, McKenzie Davis, Arthur Eason, Ashley Hansen, Clayton Hammond, Rahat Arefy

Join us in welcoming our new members:

Rahat Arefy is a junior marketing major and serves as chair of the WVU Student Dining Committee. He is from Damascus, Maryland, and is also treasurer of the WVU Climbing Club. He’s traveled all over the East Coast, including most parts of West Virginia, crack climbing rock formations. Arefy’s favorite dining hall food station is Adobo Cantina at Café Evansdale. He joined the committee with the goal of ensuring student minority groups are given a voice to be in control of their on-campus dining experience.

McKenzie Davis is a freshman biology major from Daniels. Davis has an interest in wildlife ecology and forages for edible plants throughout the changing seasons. When eating at the dining halls, she is partial to the salad bar and generally eats a balanced mix of fruits and vegetables. Davis, who has dietary restrictions, joined the committee to get more involved in campus life and help other students find food options that meet their needs and remind them of home.

Arthur Eason is a senior biochemistry major from Smithsburg, Maryland. Eason loves to fish, play Magic: The Gathering and read ghost stories. He loves the Mindful food stations at the dining halls, which focus on transparency of ingredients, delicious food and satisfying portions. Eason likes having access to food options that help him meet his nutritional goals. He joined the committee with the intention of bringing a little bit of home to each student through the food options available in the dining halls.

Clayton Hammond is a sophomore double majoring in finance and accounting. He hails from Bridgeport and enjoys being physically active, playing video games and spending time with friends. When he visits the dining halls, he gravitates to the Simple Servings station to grab healthy, tasty meals. Hammond knows the importance of proper nutrition and joined the committee to guarantee that students have access to a variety of healthy and flavorful foods.

Ashley Hansen is a freshman nursing major. She comes to us from Chicago, Illinois, and enjoys being social and meeting new faces. During her downtime, Hansen loves listening to music. Her favorite comfort food in the dining halls is cheese pizza with a side of ranch dressing. She also enjoys the made-to-order sandwich stations. Hansen joined the committee for the experience of working with a diverse group of students, to participate in discussions that will better the dining experience for all Mountaineers.

Alec Jacobsen is a freshman forensic chemistry major from Friendly, which is a small town in Tyler County. In his spare time, Jacobsen enjoys exploring the outdoors, going to the gym and cooking. He seeks out fresh food offerings at Hatfields, like the salad bar and Mongolian Grill station. He joined the committee with a focus on increasing the amount of dining hall food options available to students with dietary restrictions.

“We’re excited to have the students on the committee to represent the student body,” Clayton Cappellanti, director of WVU Dining Services, said. “They will help us improve the choices, products and services we offer in our dining halls and retail outlets. We are here to serve, and their direction shapes the future of Dining Services for the University.”

As part of the application process, students were asked to provide a recipe for a dish that reminds them of home. Those meals will be featured in the dining halls as part of the “Homish” program, so stay tuned for more details.

“Our students are at the core of everything we do, Michael Dahl, Sodexo district manager, said. We strive every day to provide an exceptional dining experience, and student feedback is how we make sure we’re aligned with the WVU community’s wants and needs. This committee has provided a great opportunity for direct and regular feedback on what’s working and what we can do better. We’re looking forward to interacting with this year’s members as we work together to enhance our dining program.”

All students are encouraged to lend their voices and opinions on their dining experience. To give real-time feedback, stop by the in-person reaction kiosks to rate your dining hall experience, or use the MyDtxt service to text questions, suggestions, comments or other feedback to dining hall managers.

Students are also advised to share their opinions with committee members, who will be active in the dining halls and on-campus events. It is with this student-powered feedback that we can ensure we are providing the best possible dining experience at WVU.

Be sure to follow @WVUDining on X (formerly Twitter), Facebook and Instagram for the latest dining news and information.