NEW Chapters, SAME Mission

Author: Rose D.

Greetings everyone! This post and introductions are long overdue. Thank you for your patience.

Now that you have listened to some of our initial episodes. You may have a better understanding of who we are individually and some of our views and cultural influences related to nutrition, health, and wellness; while exploring the related cross-sections and social determinants around them.

Raising Dietary Representation (RDR) podcast started as a need and provided a platform for sharing our experiences while navigating our Nutrition Education. You were introduced to us at the tail-end of our journey. As we continue to our respective grad schools, we hope to provide you with more insight and experiences as we embark on these new chapters.

We have spent the better part of this year conveying our impressions of the disparities in representation in nutrition and the larger healthcare field. We believe, I believe, that the sharing of information, storytelling, and dialogue are the real objectives of the podcast. Our conversations around diverse topics have provided personal perspectives on how diminished representation can have real, impactful, and even detrimental effects on minority and marginalized populations.

Therefore, I wanted to further elaborate on my background, interests, and plans. As you know I am an adult learner, a non-traditional student. I have been told not to use this label. But I think it is worth noting because pursuing your education as an adult, with the added responsibilities of life at this stage, are different. Not more or less, just different.

I spent 11+ years at the bedside including physical medicine/acute rehab, cardiac surveillance, and med/surg telemetry; sprinkled with experiences in social services-case management and education.

I served various and often underprivileged populations and much of my work and volunteer experiences overlapped, as they all involved human services. The remaining constant, was that, I have always cared for and served other individuals at their most formative and/or vulnerable times in life. I draw a lot of inspiration from those experiences.

After seeing individuals and their families struggle to address chronic diseases and watching them use their healthcare dollars at the end of life, to fight the effects of chronic diseases; and knowing that there are some behavioral and lifestyle components. I knew, I did not want to be at that juncture of care any longer. I also understood the various social determinants that led to the development or even exasperated those chronic diseases including: income inequality, safety, environmental factors-access to clean water, access to safe and affordable housing, access to routine healthcare, access to nutritious food sources i.e., food insecurity and food deserts, etc. The social-ecological factors that contribute to diseases are well known and well studied, yet disparities are still persistent.

I am interested in health policy and nutrition policy. I am also interested in nutrition research and nutrition interventions to address health disparities in minority and marginalized populations, while also emphasizing and honoring cultural food choices and traditions.

These interests have led me to accept enrollment to the Master of Public Health program at George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health, starting July 2021.

I hope as I complete my MPH program, I can continue to share my new experiences and this new chapter while integrating diversity & inclusion in nutrition and nutrition issues moving forward.

A new chapter but the same mission.


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