Bradley’s dietetics program has been recognized as one of the best programs of its kind.
Allied Health World, a comprehensive online resource for all things health care, recently named the program one of “10 Dietetics and Nutrition Programs to Check Out”.
Bradley was noted for its experimental learning opportunities including an on-campus nutrition clinic, service-learning projects with local non-profits and food service management with campus dining services.
“We focus on experimental learning so that our program is more than just classwork,” Dietetics Director Jeannette Davidson said. “Our students get experience working in many different environments, while still at the undergraduate level.”
Bradley offers an on-campus, student-run nutrition counseling center named Bodyworks, which is supervised by Davidson.
Located on Bradley Hall’s lower level, any student or staff member can schedule a free Bodyworks appointment.
According to senior and Bodyworks manager Jessica Moehling, student nutrition counselors work with a client to reach his or her health goals by performing diet analyses, measuring body composition, establishing a diet plan and giving recommendations to improve overall health.
“We make sure the client is informed on proper nutrition, individualizing a plan for each person since everyone has different needs,” Moehling said.
Senior and student nutrition counselor Kelsey Mayginnis said Bodyworks also serves as an experimental learning opportunity not offered at many other undergraduate dietetic programs.
“Since we are just students, Bodyworks helps us to become very comfortable in professional interaction and increases our confidence in our nutrition knowledge and our ability to convey that to our clients,” Mayginnis said.
Allied Health World also brought attention to Bradley students’ opportunity to work with the on-campus dining service Aramark.
The Bradley dietetics program partners with the local non-profit Gifts of the Moment to maintain an urban garden that caters to the south side of Peoria and present nutritional lessons to area students.
When Bradley dietetics students are not meeting with Bodywork clients or working in the community, they may be found in Bradley’s nutrition lab, something Davidson said is also rare for undergraduates.
“I know it may not seem like a big deal [to non-dietetics students], but very few undergraduate programs have nutrition labs like the one we do,” she said.
Allied World Health’s recognition of the Bradley dietetics program is an honor and speaks to the commitment her department has to providing students with experimental learning opportunities, Davidson said.
Mayginnis said she knows that dietetics curriculum can be difficult, but the commitment and dedication of her professors have strengthened her dietetics education.
“The coursework is very challenging but worth it because we get the chance to not just learn the material but also apply it in real-life settings,” Mayginnis said. “The professors in our program hold us to the highest of standards … they genuinely want us to succeed in our field, and thanks to them we have the ability to [succeed].”
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