Post your questions about going vegan on our Facebook page and our team of experts will give you advice and down-to-earth practical hints to help you go - and stay - vegan.

What People are Saying About
Vegan University

“I follow the Vegan University Facebook page religiously – you guys have the best vegan outreach info and events! You do such a good job with starter information and classes and grocery tours! I love it!”
- Hannah

“We really enjoyed our tour and filled up a shopping cart the next day. Until this week, we claimed being 3/4 vegetarian but after touring with you we’re going full vegan.”
- Cliff and Gloria

“This was incredibly informative and fun. The workshop leader knows what she is talking about and had great answers for all our questions.”
- Marty

“Just over two months ago I decided to overhaul my diet and lifestyle and ‘go vegan’ – cold turkey. The most difficult part of this transition has been educating myself, as I’ve definitely made plenty of rookie mistakes at the grocery store! I’ve purchased soy cheese, not knowing what casein was until I got home and looked it up. I’ve been duped by clever packaging, only to get home and find out my supposedly vegan food contained ‘dehydrated egg whites.’ These are exactly the rookie mistakes that this experience addresses! I found this grocery shopping tour to be extremely valuable. I’d do it again, for sure…”
- Derek

About Vegan University

The Animal Rights Coalition’s Vegan University is a free program designed to help you go – and stay – vegan in a way that works for you. You can sign up for your own vegan mentor, take a vegan grocery shopping tour, and go to workshops – and it’s all free! We’re here to help. No worries, no judgment. We’re here to get you across that finish line!

Vegan University consists of three elements originated by ARC: Vegan Grocery Shopping Tours of local co-ops and markets designed to teach you how to shop vegan, Help, I’m Going Vegan, Plant-based Nutrition, and Vegan Meal Planning workshops, and a Vegan Mentor program. We also host Vegan Community Circle discussion groups where we talk about what it means to be vegan, and offer support and ideas about challenges you might be facing – this is a place where you can share your feelings without having to defend them.

Vegan Grocery Shopping Tours

If you’re new to, or simply curious about veganism sign up for one of our free guided Vegan Grocery Shopping Tours, which are led by experienced vegans. You’ll learn how to shop vegan, get tips for reading labels, discover products you may have overlooked in the past, and have your questions about veganism answered.

Megan leading Vegan Shopping Tour at Seward Co-Op

Melissa leading Shopping Tour at Valley Natural Foods

Help, I’m Going Vegan, Plant-based Nutrition, and Vegan Meal Planning Workshops

Are you vegan-curious? A new vegan? Someone who just simply loves kale? Well then come on out to a free Help, I’m Going Vegan workshop and get your vegan on! We’ll answer any questions you have about going – and staying – vegan. The workshop addresses everything from environmental concerns, to animal rights, to the impact going vegan might have on interpersonal relationships. After the workshop, if you choose, you’ll have the chance to get set up with one of our many helpful vegan mentors.

If you’re vegan, how many times have you been asked “where do you get your protein?” Too many times to count we’re guessing. If you’re interested in learning how to answer this question or more information about vegan nutrition in general, join us for a free Plant-based Nutrition workshop. You’ll learn how to get nutrients such as protein, B12, Omega 3, calcium, and iron and we’ll also discuss healthful ways to incorporate color and variety into your diet. After the workshop you’ll be able to make not only ethically sound, but also health-conscious choices about what you eat.

Have you ever been confused about what vegan recipes to make or wanted to learn new tricks for storing your produce? We’ll give you tips on shopping, discuss smoothies versus juicing, and give you a seven-day meal guide in our Vegan Meal Planning workshop. Plus we’ll discuss looking at vegan nutrition from a holistic perspective and also come up with a comprehensive list of salads and sandwiches for on-the-go people.

Vegan Mentor Program

If you’d like a Vegan Mentor of your very own, ARC will match you with one of our volunteer mentors who will help you make the transition to a healthy, compassionate life as easy as possible. Fill out an application online or stop by our office, fill out an application with your contact information and interests, check out the mentor bio book, and then choose a mentor who best suits you. Your mentor will contact you with information about events and opportunities related to your interests and will be available to you as a resource for any challenges you face in transitioning to a vegan diet. The relationship can be as active or casual as you choose. Going vegan has never been easier or more fun! This is a free service and it’s only available through the Animal Rights Coalition so sign up today!

Upcoming Vegan University shopping tours, workshops, and discussion groups are posted on the ARC calendar and also on ARC’s Twin Cities Vegan Meetup page.

Why Vegan University?

Much has been made of recent studies which indicate an upswing in the number of college students identifying themselves as vegetarians (12%) or vegans (2%) and that one in five college students limits their meat consumption by sticking to a vegetarian or vegan diet, cutting out certain types of meat, or eating meat only occasionally.

But while those numbers are cause for celebration, a 2005 survey shows three times as many adults describe themselves as “ex-vegetarians” than describe themselves as current vegetarians, suggesting that about 75% of people who quit eating animals eventually return to consuming animal products. For many people, “going vegetarian” is a phase, not a permanent change in behavior.

One study indicated that 35% of ex-vegetarians cite “health” reasons for returning to eating animals while 26% said being vegetarian was too much of a “hassle.”

Instead of expecting people to make far reaching changes in their lives based on a one-time message or a quick read of a leaflet, Vegan University connects with people on a deeper level. What makes Vegan University so unique is that we not only provide easy access to reliable information, but also support people interested in making the transition to veganism via mentoring, community, and ongoing social support. It’s vital that we help people with the “how” once they believe in the “why” and that’s exactly what ARC is doing through Vegan University.