University celebrates remodeled space for promoting nutrition knowledge and healthy living
Modernized lab increases future nutrition professionals' expertise, community impact
In the newly remodeled Nutritional Science Laboratory, students develop through experiential learning the food science expertise to make an impact in their fields.
The College unveiled its newly renovated Nutritional Science Laboratory this semester, a facility designed to develop future nutrition professionals' knowledge of our food systems and how nutrition can be used to prevent and help manage preventable chronic diseases. This is important because low food literacy is associated with diet-related chronic diseases, and preventable chronic disease continues to be Nevada’s leading cause of death.
“At least half of the typical American food budget is spent on food that's prepared away from home,” Nutrition Instructor Maureen Molini said. “The collateral damage is that we have less engagement with our food. We don't prepare it, much less understand where it comes from. Being in the lab helps our students get that exposure and learn about our food systems and about our food, itself.”
In the lab, students explore topics such as the scientific method; nutrition’s role in health, chronic-disease prevention, and fitness and sports; and issues impacting the food industry and public safety.
The facility features eight powered lab stations, as well as high-definition video monitors and improved climate control. The changes, led by Department of Nutrition Chair Jamie Benedict and built on work by Experiment Station Director Chris Pritsos, foster a hands-on and collaborative environment in which students engage with nutrition in an exciting and effective way.