Diverse Dining at Bradley

By WEEK Reporter
December 2, 2010

"It's important that we celebrate with all the Jewish students wherever they may be and also the message of Hanukkah is actually a universal message. It's a message of religious freedom."

But the freedom to celebrate on campus is not all many students are thankful for this year. This fall Bradley began offering Kosher food for Jewish students at many of its cafes.

"In the past it's been a little difficult for them. Today we made it perfectly available for them that we have Kosher food and God willing, in the fall we're gonna have a Kosher kitchen."

Students seeing Kosher items aren't the only ones giving the university accolades. Bradley's Muslim Student Association President, Bilal Mohammed says those practicing Islam now have options on campus too.

"It's really hard for muslim students to find our lawful food," said Mohammed.

And until about a month ago, muslim students were on a virtually vegetarian diet unless they brought Halal food from home. Something Mohammed was all too familiar with as he frequently traveled from Chicago with food his mother sent.

"So I used to put that in the fridge and save it for everyday, and every Friday I used to throw a gathering, a party so the muslim students can eat at my house," said Mohammed.

Everything from slaughtering the animal to the way meat is prepared and served has to be done according to the Koran, so campus food staff took a course in handling Halal food.

"Basically they need to change their gloves before they touch any of that meat. Every thing's separate pans."

"We're excited about offering options for not only Kosher students but muslim students and students that are vegetarian and vegan as well," said Bradley President, Dr. Joanne Glasser.

Glasser says with few Illinois universities offering such diverse dining on campus, it's her goal to make students of all cultures and religious backgrounds feel at home at Bradley.

"We're hoping that it's going to be not only a good marketing tool but it's the right thing to do."

"My younger brother is actually really excited to come to Bradley next year because he saw his Halal food is

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