Kendall College Joins with Fresh Moves to Address Food Deserts in Chicago
Students and Faculty Assist with Business Development, Marketing for Newly Launched Non-Profit
CHICAGO—June 16, 2011—Kendall College announced it has launched an extension of its cooperative agreement with Fresh Moves, the Chicago-based non-profit organization that brings fresh produce to underprivileged Chicago neighborhoods. The relationship between Kendall College and Fresh Moves focuses on healthy eating and nutrition. Fresh Moves was founded in 2009 by activists Steve Casey, Sheelah Muhammad and Jeff Pinzino to bring fresh produce to Chicago neighborhoods known as “food deserts” due to the lack of easy access to fresh food and produce.
Kendall College began its relationship with Fresh Moves in the summer of 2010, when Fresh Moves was chosen by the Kendall College School of Business as a pro bono case study for its Business Case Development class, designed and taught by Aurora Reinke. At the time, Fresh Moves had a mission to bring fresh produce directly to the doorsteps of Chicagoans who needed it, but the organization was very much still in its infancy and lacking resources.
“This was a perfect opportunity for our students to get hands-on experience in applying their learning, while reinforcing concepts of corporate social responsibility and the challenges faced by a not-for-profit organization,” said Michelle Coussens, dean of the School of Business. “We were very excited to create and maintain a long-term relationship with Fresh Moves and to see the hard work and ideas of our students come to fruition through the soft launch of its mobile produce market last month.”
Kendall business students and faculty worked with Fresh Moves for nearly a year. Students in the business case development, marketing and entrepreneurship courses evaluated the organization’s produce sourcing options, conducted primary and secondary research on the demographics of food deserts in Chicago and explored produce purchasing habits. They tested branding and promotional ideas, and developed the business plan for the Fresh Moves mobile market launch. Fresh Moves also hired a School of Business student as an intern.
“The hard work and time donated by the students and faculty at Kendall College has been instrumental in helping us get up and running,” said Steve Casey. “In fact, the business plan developed by the students in the Entrepreneurship class allowed us to seek funding and make some key operational decisions. This is an example of a nontraditional partnership that has truly been win-win for both organizations. We are so thankful for Kendall’s support, guidance and collaboration.”
The agreement between Kendall College and Fresh Moves has extended to the area of healthy eating and nutrition. Kendall’s School of Culinary Arts recently developed nutritious, family-friendly recipes that can be cooked with produce sold by Fresh Moves, and donated the recipe cards to be given to customers. These recipes support Fresh Moves dedication to providing educational materials to the community about the importance of a healthy diet, while supporting Kendall’s commitment to nutrition education.
For more information about Fresh Moves, visit http://freshmoves.org.
About Kendall College
Kendall College, founded in 1934, is located in Chicago, Illinois. Kendall offers undergraduate degrees in business, culinary arts, early childhood education and hospitality management to a diverse and passionate community of more than 2500 students. The curriculum combines strong academics with practical experience and international educational opportunities that help give students in business, hospitality, and culinary arts programs the skills and expertise to be leaders in their professions. Kendall College, a member of the Laureate International Universities network, is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and is a member of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA), www.ncahlc.org.