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he Daily Meal’s 2013 list of the 60 Best Colleges for Food in America is out — and Bon Appétit Management Company operates 13 of them! These are schools that “refuse to accept the stigma that comes with collegiate dining, taking the ordinary campus meal and turning it into an extraordinary dining experience.”

Congratulations to the Bon Appétit Management Company team at Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR, which has achieved gold certification from the City of Portland’s Sustainability at Work program, recognizing its leadership in helping make Portland one of the cleanest, most sustainable cities in the country.

School is back in session, and the Daily Meal just wrapped up a summer-long research project — a hunt for the best college food in the country. The team examined the dining programs at every four-year college in America — more than 2,000 of them. Nine Bon Appétit schools made the resulting list of 52!

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When it comes to food, students know what they like – and what they don’t. Long gone are the times where students would eat mystery meat, things covered in gravy, and canned vegetables. Thanks to Bon Appétit, they don’t have to.

From foodies to vegans and the gluten-intolerant, today’s students are increasingly scrutinizing the food at their prospective colleges — and citing its quality and choice as major factors in their decision making. But comparing dining programs can be tough, without tasting food at each school and chatting with the dining services staff. The Daily Meal sought to make the process easier by pulling together a list of the nation’s top 20 colleges and universities, ranked by their food options. Four Bon Appétit accounts made the top 10!

This week, as millions of college students headed back to school, Newsweek/The Daily Beast released its College Rankings 2011, with categories including Most Service-Oriented, Most Beautiful, Future CEOs, and — most important to us — Best College Food, honoring those schools that “go above and beyond to make it great.” We are proud to say that on that list of 25, Bon Appétit Management Company teams feed a whopping eight of them:

Professor-student ratios. Numbers of Nobel Prize winners. Percentage of graduates who get jobs in their fields. These are all criteria that prospective college students care about. But in addition to stuffing their heads with knowledge, they want to eat well during their four (or more) expensive years on campus. And that’s why Bon Appétit Management Company is very proud to report that our dining services at Wheaton College in Wheaton, IL, have been named Best College Food by the 122,000 students polled for the highly influential Princeton Review list of The Best 376 Colleges.

Case Western Reserve University in Cleaveland, OH, and its Bon Appétit team were recently awarded the grand prize in the residential dining concepts category at the National Association of College and University Food Services (NACUFS) Loyal E. Horton Dining Awards luncheon held in Dallas, TX. The judges’ criteria included menu concepts, merchandising and presentation, marketing, nutrition and wellness programs, as well as sustainability goals and an overall “wow” factor.