As thousands of high school students set out to visit college campuses over the next few months, one factor that some students need to seriously consider is how the dining facilities at their favorite schools are handling food allergies. Recently, InsiderHigherEd.com published an article on the growing number of 18-year-olds who are arriving on college campuses with serious food allergies. The article also provides a link to the Food Allergy and Anaphylaxis Network’s College Network. This is a great resource for any student who is looking at colleges and needs to consider what accommodations can be made for food allergies.
FAAN provides a database of colleges and their “food allergy approach”. Since not all colleges are registered with FAAN, here are few things to consider if you are visiting a college and have questions about food allergies:
Plan ahead: Ask the admissions office who you should contact regarding questions you have about your food allergy. You may be referred to someone in dining services or a nutritionist on campus. You should try to meet with this person during your visit.
The dining experience: Make sure the dining halls will be open during your visit. Often times admissions will give visiting students free passes to the dining hall. This is a great opportunity for you to see what foods are available and how easy it will be for you to manage your allergy.
FAAN also lists other questions to consider from how your allergy could affect your living situation to what would happen if you do experience an emergency situation while on campus.
Since eating is an integral part of our daily lives, it is important for students with severe food allergies to seriously consider how your allergy plays a roll in your college search process.