Snack station strengthens Wolfpack during exam week


Most students do their best to make healthy choices in their day-to-day lives, but, convenience is key for study snacks during exam weeks. Unfortunately, the most convenient snack option is very rarely the most well-balanced. 

Lauren Smith, NC State’s Director of Nutrition and Wellness, noticed this problem with students’ study snacks and took charge to pilot an exam-week snack station: The Strength of the Wolf is the Snack. “The concept was a ready-to-go snack station where students could quickly get predetermined healthy snacks that could be assembled quickly or were already assembled.” 

Students made a balanced snack that best suited their needs.

Every day during exams, Fountain Dining Hall featured a the snack station, making it easily accessible when students were already there to grab a meal. Students were given a plastic container to fill with the base snack, then choose toppings or pairings to go along with it. Each day featured a different menu that balanced fats, protein, and carbs, including a hummus bar, a cheese and fruit bar, a make-your-own yogurt parfait station, a protein salad bar, and a DIY bento box bar. 

The Strength of the Wolf is the Snack also sought to highlight the nutritional component of the snack bar and why macronutrients are important when building a snack. A more well-balanced snack can sustain students for longer and fill them up with food that will help them remain focused while studying, not induce a sugar crash shortly after. Smith says it was “very intentional,” which snacks they chose for the bar, as they hoped to show students that “well-balanced snacks can be just as delicious and accessible during exams.” 

Overall, the event was a great success for students, and Smith is hopeful that The Strength of the Wolf is the Snack can be a recurring event to help students remain fueled and focused during exams.