The College of Applied Science and Technology’s “A Day in the Life of a CAST Alum” series is designed to shed some light on how CAST alumni spend their days. As with many careers, our alumni will tell you that every day is different, but this series aims to provide a peek into an alum’s world.

Department of Family and Consumer Sciences alum Julie McCoy M.S. ’06, RD, LDN, has worked for District 87 schools for four and a half years. As school nutrition director, McCoy is responsible for the management and coordination of the food service operation, including personnel, purchasing, marketing, maintenance, security, and many other duties. In addition, McCoy does many outreach opportunities related to nutrition and wellness with students, families, faculty, and staff within the district and community.

8:30 a.m. Informal meeting with administrative assistant to see what she has planned that day, what problems she has been dealing with so far, and field any questions she may have.

9–11 a.m. Begin work on important emails, financial reports, or other projects. Other things I may do at this time are have meetings with co-workers from various departments, cafeteria managers, food brokers, wellness-related meetings, or a variety of other meetings that may pop up.

12 p.m. Typically around when I would grab lunch (depending on the day this could be earlier or a bit later).

1–4 p.m. Return to responding to important emails, projects that need completion, and possibly an afternoon meeting. This is also the time in which I would meet with managers to do employee interviews, or to address other matters at the end of the school day. It is typically a quieter time as lunch is over and one of my more productive times of the day for “quiet” projects.

On any given day, I may also have the following things come up: Conferences (in town or out of town), webinars, conference calls, visit schools to check in with staff, review new recipes, policies, or procedures. I also work with students (dietetic interns, professional practice, health education, etc.), present nutrition-related topics to classrooms, or talk to college age students about my career.

In addition, I put out fires, such as refrigerators/freezers breaking down, food orders not showing up, computer “point of sale” issues, and other matters. I also work with technical support to fix point of sale problems, talk to parents regarding lunch accounts or food allergies, create new recipes, and the list goes on!

The days are never the same, and I always expect the unexpected!

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