Student Success Spotlight

October 25, 2021

Time for a Fall Student Success Spotlight! Several of our excellent undergraduate nutrition students including Azzairia Jackson, Shannon Anderson, Nathan Seim, and Doug Grade participated in a 2-hour presentation at the 2021 Minnesota Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics meeting with the Cultural Wellness Center's Community Health Hub director. They presented their findings from a year-long experiential learning internship at Midtown Global Market. This work was also presented at our Fall Showcase by Alissa Perteet-Jackson and Melissa Jansma and can be viewed at the webpage.
Another group of impressive and conscientious students have come together this year to form the newest departmental Campus Life Program- the FSCN Student Support Collective. Their goal is to improve FSCN students’ experience by discussing topics such as mental health and study tips, as well as creating a community of like-minded peers. They are also hosting the FSCN Homework Hub this semester. Follow them on Instagram.
Graduate student Radhika Bharathi is another student deserving of special recognition. She was recently chosen to be the recipient of the Elwood F. and Florence A Caldwell Graduate Fellowship. Additionally, she volunteered with the Forever Green Initiative and CFANS at the Minnesota State Fair. This was a wonderful opportunity to talk about her research work on Intermediate wheatgrass (Kernza), a novel, climate-friendly grain with environmental advantages, and how it can be used in baking, brewing, and various other food applications. Kernza products generated massive interest from many enthusiastic fair-goers and a large Minnesota Kernza harvest this season will result in several commercial products hitting shelves this fall. Interested in learning more about Kernza and other emerging perennial crops? Visit Forever Green
We also wish to acknowledge graduate student Sonali Raghunath’s recent accomplishments as well. She was recognized at the 2021 IFT annual meeting with the following awards: 2nd place in the Non-thermal Processing Division Oral Competition and won the Outstanding Volunteer Award in both the Dairy Food and Food Packaging Divisions. She was also a finalist in the ADSA Dairy Foods Oral Competition. Additionally, Sonali placed in the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers Annual International Virtual Meeting held in July 2021 in the Student Oral/Poster Presentation Competition!
Nutrition PhD Candidate Laura Hooper had a productive summer, first by giving an invited lecture at UW-Madison on “Weight Stigma and Weight-Related Health in Adolescents”. Laura also helped produce a free online physical activity resource for adolescents with colleagues in the UMN Department of Pediatrics. Learn more about this resource.
A group of our Food Science undergraduates were selected as finalists for the IFTSA Smart Snacks for Kids Competition at IFT this year with their “Comet Pop” product. This competition challenges students to develop a fun and nutritious food or beverage product targeted at kids and/or teens. Products must abide by the USDA “Guide to Smart Snacks in School” recommendations. Graduate Food Science Minor Grace Dewi also had success at IFT this year by winning the IFTSA Graduate Research Video Competition with her video entitled” Probiotics and Phytobiotics against Salmonella in Turkey Production and Processing”. Watch it here.
Congratulations to all of you and thank you for your dedication to the advancement of the fields of food and nutrition!