Staff Spotlight: Lynn Goering - nutrition specialist

Every week, we’ll shine a spotlight on one Lincoln Public Schools staff member! Get to know the wonderful people making a positive impact across various areas within LPS. This week, meet Lynn Goering, nutrition specialist at the Steve Joel District Leadership Center. 

“Lynn’s main role is working with special diets for students. She works directly with parents, students and cafeteria staff in order to create the perfect menu for students that will keep them healthy, satisfied and safe. Monthly, she creates special diet menus for cafeteria staff to follow using her broad knowledge of food items and their ingredients. She is a very busy person, as the need for special diets is ongoing, and new requests come in daily.” - Shellie Haun, nutrition services technology support.

In a few sentences, briefly describe your role at LPS.
My primary role is special diets, working with families, cafeteria staff and often health office staff to outline a plan that ensures students with special dietary needs can eat safely at school.

How long have you worked for LPS?
I came to LPS in the summer of 2017 and the seven years I've been here have flown by.

What inspired you to become part of the education field at LPS?
Originally, I thought my dream job as a dietitian would be to work in a hospital. It was my dream job for about five years, but when my son became seriously ill, I realized I'd spent enough time in the hospital environment. Purely by accident, I stumbled upon a job with the Child and Adult Care Food Program, which provides education and support for childcare providers. That eventually led me to a job with the USDA WIC program. The Women Infants and Children Program provides education to families as well as nutritional foods, which led to another great opportunity working in the Nebraska Department of Education, and the school lunch program. It seemed like everything came full circle when LPS had a vacancy for my position.

What has been your favorite part of working here? What aspect of your job do you find most rewarding?
I love talking about food. I believe that eating should be joyful and that lunch is one of the most important parts of the student's day. It's a chance for them to decompress, eat with their friends, nourish themselves, relax and recharge. There are many rewarding and interesting aspects of my job, but I think parent and staff interactions are extremely rewarding. When I speak to nervous or concerned parents, I can relate. I remember when we were in the thick of dealing with my son's health issues, and how scary it was. I didn't want him to be treated like one of the masses or just another patient. Parents need to hear that their child is important and that we want their child to have a positive, safe experience eating at school. Next, I work to create menus with clear instructions for the kitchen that are also appetizing for the students. The school cafeteria staff are the front line, preparing the special meals and interacting with the students every day. We all share the same goal—a delicious, safe school meal for every child, even those with special dietary needs.

Did you attend LPS as a student? If so, which school(s)? If not, where are you from?
I grew up in Stromsburg, Neb.

What path did you take after completing your formal education?
I graduated from UNL and completed a dietetic internship through UNL.

What do you enjoy most about the Lincoln community?
I grew up in a town of 1,200. Lincoln feels like a "small" big town.

What is your favorite childhood book or a book that has influenced your life positively?
There are so many. I love books, and I love reading! Dr. Suess popped into my head first because of how fun it is to read his books with rhymes and pure silliness. I had stacks of Dr. Suess books when I was little.

Share a shout out to a former teacher who impacted your life.
Mr. Waller, my high school geometry teacher, taught in a way that made it clear, interesting and even fun at times!

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Published: June 21, 2024, Updated: June 21, 2024

Lynn Goering - nutrition specialist