On Monday March 18, Matt Hilbert and I sat on a wooden bench in the Outdoor Adventure Center. He wore a smile, and held himself with a confidence that couldn’t easily be duplicated. He was promoting his recently introduced club, UVU Foods, which can be found on Orgsync or Facebook.
“There are three goals I hope to attain with this club,” Hilbert said. “[We hope] to get a spot here at UVU for different food options, raise awareness about health food and get a garden or maybe even livestock here.”
The club was created from an idea that started as a small flicker five years ago when Hilbert started seeing a physical therapist for back problems. He was put on a diet, though he did not always follow it.
“I noticed how good I felt and how much it helped me when I ate healthier,” Hilbert said.
After this, Hilbert wished to learn more. With research and his background growing up on a farm, he was able to better understand the world of food.
“I learned more and more about industrial agriculture. I didn’t appreciate it, but I don’t think it is ‘evil.’ I just wanted more options,” Hilbert said.
With an even bigger smile, Hilbert painted a picture of his dream. He envisioned a large auditorium at UVU with anyone and everyone who wanted to join the club. His dream doesn’t just end at the UVU student body. He wants everyone to take a part in it.
Yet, even with such big dreams, he still has kept his club low-key and low-stress.
UVU foods was not at club rush at the beginning of the semester. Hilbert had plans to make his club a reality, but it wasn’t until the end of February and beginning of March he was able to make it a part of UVU.
Currently, there are 15 members in the club. Nearly half of them do not attend UVU.
Hilbert hopes to encourage international students to join. He is interested in local food, but that doesn’t only mean what everyone in Utah is accustomed to. With at least one international student the food could have that much more “flavor.”
“Food is a very important aspect of a daily life. It is an expression,” Hilbert said.
In the future, Hilbert hopes to have one or two classes dedicated to this idea. Right now, he will focus on what is good for the club. There will be a lot of hands-on experience, different ideas and goals set for the club.
Hilbert has a lot he hopes to accomplish. He already has plans to talk with local businesses like Winder Farms and Mountain West Burrito to see if they could work with the club members for volunteer work, recommendations, directions and the possibility of different specials and discounts.
“If you eat, you should be in or at least aware of this club,” Hilbert said. “Plus, [club members] will be fed.”