Frequently Asked Questions

Regarding Food Allergies, Celiac Disease, and Dietary Conditions

We have provided the following FAQs regarding dining at Wesleyan for students with life threatening food allergies, celiac, or other dietary condition. Please click on the question to reveal the corresponding information.

Accessibility Services is always happy to answer any additional questions you may have. It is recommended that students with food allergies, celiac disease, or other dietary condition contact Accessibility Services to discuss their individual needs.

  • What is the process for requesting accommodations related to a food allergy, celiac disease, or other dietary condition?

    Students who would like to request reasonable accommodations related to a disability, as covered under 504/ADA, are expected to self-disclose to Accessibility Services.

    There is a three step process for requesting reasonable accommodations related to food allergies, celiac disease, and other medical conditions that require dietary accommodations:

    1. Notify the University that you have a condition that requires accommodations.
    2. Provide documentation of your condition and the impact on major life functions.
    3. Meet with University staff to discuss appropriate accommodations to meet your needs.
      • This interactive process is a key feature to ensure the timely implementation of your approved accommodations.
  • What are the meal plan options?

    Depending on class year, the standard meal plan ranges from a block plan of 285 meals per semester to an all-points plan. As a residential campus, all Wesleyan students are required to have a meal plan. More specific information about meal plan options can be found on the WesCard website and in the Student Handbook.

  • Are all food items labeled with all the ingredients?

    Not every ingredient is listed.
    However, at Bon Appétit dining locations, the dishes are currently identified with color coded icons that indicate specific designations (vegan, vegetarian, made without gluten, etc.) as well as naming foods as clearly as possible with the major eight allergens.
    The name of the menu item will include the allergens that are most likely to cause severe reactions (i.e. Peanut Encrusted Sole).

    The most accurate information regarding ingredients will come from managers and not from the staff serving the food. Managers are always on the floor of the Marketplace and Summerfields dining facilities whenever meals are being served, so students always have a resource available to them if they need to confirm certain ingredients or potential allergens. For more specific information please refer to Allergies and Bon Appétit.

    It is important to note that there are some dining locations on campus that are not managed by Bon Appétit and therefore do not fall under the campus dining requirements. These facilities include WesWings, Espwesso, Red and Black Café, Star and Crescent, and grown. Student electing to eat in these venues should check with the individual management to learn about their safety standards.

  • What kinds of food allergies can be accommodated?

    Bon Appétit is able to assist students with almost any allergy or medical condition that impacts diet or nutritional choices.
    A priority for Dining Services is making the experience accessible for all students. While Dining Services trains its staff to ensure that every precaution is taken in order to provide safe and delicious meals, they cannot always make special accommodations without prior notification to the dining management team who works with students on these concerns.

    Therefore, students with food allergies, celiac disease, or other dietary concerns should self-disclose to Accessibility Services in order to begin the interactive process of discussing their dietary needs, getting connected to resources, and determining if reasonable accommodations are appropriate.

  • What dining options are available to students with life threatening food allergies, celiac, or other dietary conditions?

    There are a number of students on campus who have celiac disease, severe gluten intolerance, IBS, or other conditions that can create a challenge when making dining choices. These students have been able to manage their eating at Wesleyan quite well.

    Wesleyan contracts with Bon Appétit, and is committed to meeting the needs of students with food allergies and celiac disease. Bon Appétit has several dining locations on campus. Additionally, there is a celiac station in the Usdan Marketplace that offers appropriate food options for students with a gluten-free diet.

    Bon Appétit also has a registered dietician on staff. Students who identify as having a dietary condition which impacts their meal choices are strongly encouraged to meet with the dietician, who will walk them through meal options which avoid cross contact and allergen ingredients.

    The dietician will also review which products are carried in other Bon Appétit locations (Weshop and the Café locations) that are appropriate for the student's dietary needs. For more specific information please refer to Allergies and Bon Appétit.

  • How can I be assured that dining on campus is a safe option?

    The most accurate information involving ingredients will always come from managers and not from the staff serving the food. Managers are always available during meal times to answer questions regarding ingredients.

    Bon Appétit is one of the leaders in food-allergy awareness and cross-contact prevention, and has a respected reputation for its awareness, safety, training, and food handling practices. Protocol is based on the “Food Allergy Training Guide for College and University Food Services” by the leading experts at Food Allergy Research and Education (FARE).

    It is important to note that there are some dining locations on campus that are not managed by Bon Appétit and therefore do not fall under the campus dining requirements. These facilities include WesWings, Espwesso, Red and Black Café, Star and Crescent, and grown. Student electing to eat in these venues should check with the individual management to learn about their safety standards.

  • Are there other students on campus with food allergies or celiac disease that I can connect with?

    There are a number of students at Wesleyan who have food allergies, celiac disease, IBS, and many other conditions that can create a challenge when making dining choices. Whether you have been managing food allergies all your life, or have been recently diagnosed, a community of understanding and support can be incredibly helpful.

    EASY Club (Eating Allergy-Safe and Yummy) is a student run organization on campus.
    EASY is dedicated to supporting students with any type of eating restriction. EASY members have celiac disease, as well as other food allergies, intolerances, and sensitivities ranging from the big eight to more uncommon items, such as artificial colors and onions.

    A few meetings are held during each semester to cook meals, relax, and connect with other students, knowing that the food will be completely allergen safe. The meals also serve as a forum to discuss any questions, concerns, or problems faced while eating on campus. EASY works with Bon Appétit to provide suggestions and discuss student concerns and possible solutions.

    EASY provides resources for both incoming and returning students, and EASY members are happy to discuss their individual allergy experiences at Wesleyan with others. For more information on EASY, please contact:
    rkantor@wesleyan.edu or inewman@wesleyan.edu

  • Can I have a roommate if I have a food allergy?

    Yes. Some students with food allergies are comfortable educating, not only their roommate(s), but students on their floor (apartment, house, etc.) in order to prevent any dangerous cross contact. It is recommended that you set up a meeting with your RA after you move in to enlist any necessary support with peer education.

    Be sure to talk with your roommate(s) about how to handle food storage, preparation, and eating in the room, and whether food allergens are allowed in the room. This is helpful BEFORE your roommate(s) begin to bring food into the room. Laying down these rules ahead of time eliminates future conflict. For more tips on managing food allergies at college, visit the FARE website.

    Please note that all RAs received training through FARE on best practices for food allergies. You should alert your RA if you have an Emergency Care Plan, and also consider sharing that information with your friends and roommate(s).

  • Are events taking place on campus outside of Dining Services a safe option?

    When an event is catered by Bon Appétit, the same protocol is followed which applies to the dining facilities, and students can contact the catering manager.

    However, while some Wesleyan University sponsored events are catered by Bon Appétit, not all events on campus will be. We recommend that you contact the event organizer ahead of time to get information about who is responsible for catering the event. Then follow up with the caterer to discuss any concerns/requests that you have surrounding the event.

  • In the event that an allergic reaction does occur, who should be contacted?

    When on campus, call Public Safety at 860-685-3333 to ensure a more immediate response.
    They will notify the 911 center to request emergency services. Public Safety will also notify any campus partners who need to be made aware of the situation.
    You always have the option to call 911.

    When off campus, call 911 immediately, and follow-up with Health Services at 860-685-2470 after receiving emergency care.

    If you have been prescribed an EpiPen, it is important for you to have it on your person all the time. An allergic reaction can occur quickly and early treatment can be life-saving. If you do give yourself an EpiPen injection, obtain immediate follow-up care by contacting Public Safety at x3333, or calling 911.

  • Who will be trained and aware on the use of EpiPens and emergency procedures?

    Dining Services staff is NOT trained to administer EpiPens and CANNOT provide or administer them. Students should carry their EpiPen with them at all times.

    Public Safety, Residential Life, Usdan University Center, and Bon Appétit staff are trained and aware of emergency procedures associated with allergic reactions. However, because it is considered a medical procedure, no staff member, student, or community member is required to administer an EpiPen.

    If an EpiPen is used by a person in medical distress, immediate follow-up should be handled at Middlesex Hospital Emergency Department. You should contact Public Safety at x3333 or call 911.