Campus Community Dinner Series Relaunch at Southern Vermont College

November 21, 2013

Southern Vermont College (SVC) will relaunch the Campus Community Dinner Series, a project that invites local families with elementary to high school-aged children to join SVC students to experience the benefits of family dinners and engage in thoughtful conversation over meals prepared and served on campus.

This academic year, 14 SVC students and six families from the Bennington area will participate in the project. The students and families will meet for the first time on Tuesday, December 10. Topics of conversation will include the value of an education and ways to increase civic engagement.

“This project is a quadruple win. Local families are invited to SVC’s campus to engage with college students, heightening awareness that attending college is a real possibility,” SVC President Karen Gross said. “Families will see the value of eating healthy food, being together and having a dinner conversation. SVC students will learn more about members of the Bennington community and ways they can encourage interest in our College and college attendance generally. The students, too, will learn the value of dinner conversation they can carry into their own families as they progress in their education and lives.”

In February, members of the Vermont Campus Compact will host similar family dinners on their own campuses to encourage college progression and the value of civic engagement. Vermont, as a state, needs more of its high school graduates to progress to and through college, and this effort helps in furthering this important goal. Indeed, the workforce of the State needs more college graduates and this program, conducted locally and then state wide, serves this end.

Remaining dinners on SVC’s campus will occur Tuesday, February 4, with an invitation to the men’s basketball game against Lesley College at 7 p.m.; Monday, February 24; Monday, March 24; and will conclude on Monday, April 21.

The Campus Community Dinner Series is being sponsored by Sodexo, Inc., a leading integrated food and facilities management services company, as part of its commitment to enhancing the learning environment and providing students and staff with a nurturing campus experience. Learn more about Sodexo and the role they play on school campuses at
For more information on the Campus Community Dinner Series, contact Project Manager AJ Mahar at 802-447-4012 or e-mail

About Southern Vermont College
Founded in 1926, Southern Vermont College offers a career-enhancing, liberal arts education with 17 academic degree programs for more than 500 students. SVC recognizes the importance of educating students for the workplace of the twenty-first century and as successful leaders in their communities. SVC’s athletic teams are part of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division III and the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC). The College is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges and has been designated by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a Community-Engagement Classification institution.
About The Family Dinner Project
The Family Dinner Project is a start-up grassroots movement of food, fun and conversation about things that matter. Research has shown what parents have known for a long time: Sharing a fun family meal is good for the spirit, brain and health of all family members. Recent studies link regular family meals with the kinds of behaviors that parents want for their children: higher grade-point averages, resilience and self-esteem. Through this movement, families come together to share their experiences and insights to help each other realize the benefits of family dinners. For more information about The Family Dinner Project, please visit the Web site at
About Sodexo, Inc.
Sodexo, Inc. ( is a leading integrated food and facilities management services company in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, with $7.3 billion (USD) in annual revenue and 120,000 employees. Sodexo, Inc., serves more than ten million customers daily in corporations, healthcare, long-term care and retirement centers, schools, college campuses, government and remote sites. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., is a member of Sodexo Group, and funds the Sodexo Foundation (, an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than 9.2 million in grants to fight hunger in America.