MetMUnch’s Big Week of Staff & Student Impact

THE LAST week of October was an intense one for MetMUnch, with six events held in six science-packed days.

SciBarThe week began on Monday with a talk at the Department of Science and Engineering’s SciBar, held at The Lass O’Gowrie pub. MetMUnch founder Haleh Moravej delivered an exciting and interactive session, Fat Is Not The Enemy, about good fats versus bad fats, with props including five pounds of fat wowing 60 staff and students from across the University.

On Tuesday, MetMUnch and MMU Sport continued their collaboration in the second HealthyU nutrition class. HealthyU is an eight-week nutrition and fitness programme launched in October. Currently in its pilot stage, the aim is for staff and student participants to enhance their knowledge and understanding of nutrition and fitness, with twice weekly workouts complimented by nutrition classes.

MetMUnch is planning on designing and delivering more creative, bespoke nutrition, health and wellness sessions for teams and departments across Manchester Met, as well as working
on a bigger and better HealthyU programme with MMU Sport for 2016.

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Kimchi cravings

Wednesday saw the Cravings: Late event at the Museum of Science and Industry. Staff and students worked from 7pm to 11pm, educating over 900 members of the public in how to create kimchi, a popular fermented Korean condiment. In the first half hour alone, MetMUnchers demonstrated, created and gave away 250 jars to the eager public, all while explaining the health benefits of and microbiology behind fermented foods.
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MoSI Creative Director Carol Keating said: “I wanted to thank you for all your help making Cravings: Late such a success! We had a record-breaking 909 visitors in the end – double the number we usually see for late events – and we’ve had some great feedback from guests on what a fantastic night it was.” The event showed the level of creativity, fun and excitement that is only possible when students are truly engaged, empowered and learning while doing.

microbesOn Thursday, MetMUnch took part in A Menu Made by Microbes, in collaboration with Professor Jo Verran and celebrity chef Richard Fox. Haleh Moravej hosted a table at Harvey Nichols, where she shared her knowledge of fermentation and nutritional science with diners at the event. MetMUnch will be collaborating on all future Menu Made by Microbes events, increasing cross-departmental engagement for staff and students and continuing to deliver groundbreaking public events on behalf of Manchester Met.
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Friday saw the team work with MMU Futures, MMU Environment, MMU Sport and Residential Life at the MMU Futures Halloween Social. MetMUnchers advised their fellow students on how to use winter vegetables, gave away free pumpkin recipes, and used the hashtag #KitchenHorrorStories to capture video interviews with students on the barriers to fresh cooking and healthy eating as a student.


Halloween extravaganza

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MetMUnch’s big week concluded on Halloween, as the team joined staff and students from the Faculty of Science and Engineering in John Dalton for the Manchester Science Festival Science Extravaganza. MetMUnch’s cardboard kitchen was transformed into Dracula’s Creepy Carbon Kitchen, and students helped children investigate ways to cut Dracula’s carbon footprint by reducing his energy use in the home. MetMUnch also gave away augmented reality recipes and special MiniMUnchers activity booklets to children and their parents.

Lecturer in Science Communication Dr Sam Illingworth said: “A massive thank you to you and your team for helping to make Science Extravaganza so special. We had 253 visitors and every one of them loved it.”SciEx 2

The above follows a range of events held by MetMUnch around Manchester Met this academic year, including the opening of a one-day-only pop-up Apple Store (with real apples instead of iPhones), cooking 700 portions of free curry and soup for Birley Community Day, and holding interactive cooking, budget and nutrition lessons for students, including introducing kitchen basics to 3,000 new students on Welcome Sunday.

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