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PROPOSAL FOR NEW DEPARTMENT OF NUTRITION AND FOOD STUDIES COLLEGE OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES April 7, 2010 In concert with the strategic plan of the College of Health and Human Services, the college seeks approval from the Board of Visitors and SCHEV for the creation of a new Department of Nutrition and Food Studies (NFS). The full proposal has been reviewed and endorsed by the Provost and the Deans and Directors of the university. The existing Department of Global and Community Health (GCH) has served as the primary academic incubator for several courses, concentrations and certificates in nutrition, which generate approximately 20% of the student FTEs in that department. After approval and a year of further internal planning, the Department of Nutrition and Food Studies will commence in fall, 2011, and current courses and certificates will migrate to it. NFS eventually will offer graduate and undergraduate programs in nutrition/dietetics (RD), public health nutrition, food studies, and culinary arts. A collaborative arrangement with the College of Science will allow CHHS to build essential food science courses for degrees and concentrations. Possible collaborations with the College of Science include programs in Food Chemistry, Nutritional Genomics, Nutritional Biochemistry, and Food Security. Once the food science collaborations are in place, the department will be able to explore options for an innovative program in Culinology, which combines food science with the culinary arts. Programs of research in the new department will build on existing faculty work in the areas of childhood obesity, maternal and child health, and vulnerable, underserved, and disadvantaged groups. Support for the new department will come from enrollment growth and research productivity. In addition, we are already working with the university Office of Development on gift and naming opportunities for the programs and faculty in the proposed department. Space already has been approved by the university Space Administration Committee for a kitchen to support the food studies elements of the program (location to be determined), and offices have been reserved in the NE Module to house faculty and graduate research assistants. The new department will be on the cutting edge of the movement to modernize health care. One of the core principles this effort is that prevention of illness is a better and less expensive approach than care of the already sick, and no element of prevention is more salient or ripe for intervention than eating habits. With First Lady Michelle Obama as its champion, nutrition is quickly moving to the foreground of the health care debate. Two of the fastest growing health problems in the U.S. are the closely linked conditions of obesity and diabetes, both of which are related to poor nutrition. The programs instruction and research in NFS will provide an integrated approach to understanding nutrition that will enable students to design interventions to effectively manage these problems.