On the first day of September, seven faculty members including the KAIST president, Sung-Chul Shin, himself came to the KAIMARU Student Cafeteria (N11) in the morning to hand out peaches for KAIST students to enjoy during their breakfast. The ceremony marked the beginning of the ambitious program hosted by the KAIST Global Leadership Center (KGLC).
The program aims to encourage students to eat breakfast by giving out freshly delivered seasonal fruit every morning to students. Eating breakfast is mandatory for the brain to function efficiently and yet only a small proportion of the students — less than 500 — show up to the cafeteria to have a nutritionally-balanced meal. “We found out that it is extremely difficult for the students to have fruit in their dorms. Providing free fruit will not only allow students to gain access to daily fresh fruit but also create a healthy habit of eating breakfast for KAIST students,” said Director of the KGLC Young-gil Kim. Previously, KAIST students had to own refrigerators to keep the fruits fresh or buy sliced fruits at Secret, a salad bar at KAIMARU, for a considerable price.
From Monday to Friday, KAIMARU, the West Cafeteria (W2), and the East Cafeteria (E5) will provide fresh daily seasonal fruit for free along with breakfast. The cafeterias will get their fruit delivered and cleaned the day before they are served. For nutritional variety, the KGLC will provide a different type of fruit for each day of the week. The purchase of the fruit will be funded by donations from KAIST alumni and the parents of KAIST students. The program will not be available on weekends and holidays.
The event finished with the president having a meal at KAIMARU with the students. The KGLC held another Fruit of the Day event with the KAIST Alumni Association. The president, Jung Sik Koh, and the vice president, Han-Oh Park, showed up to hand out fruits at the East Cafeteria on September 7. The KGLC is also planning to hold another event with the parent contributors on the third week at KAIMARU so that the contributors themselves could see how their generosity has brought changes to the school. “We’ve received a lot of positive feedback from the students. We hope our program promotes students’ health,” a member of the KGLC said during the interview, “and also lasts long enough so that future generations of KAIST students can enjoy what the students are currently appreciating.”