On May 17, 25 nutrition and dietetics students were initiated into Phi Upsilon Omicron, a national honor society for students in family and consumer sciences.
Phi U national president Corine Carr attended the ceremony and pinned each student, plus two alumni and five faculty members. New members are from both the School of Public Health and the School of Allied Health Professions.
The idea to form a Phi U chapter at Loma Linda University grew out of the Nutrition Council Student Association, which students from both schools formed in 2009 to enrich their own education, unite together, and also educate others in nutrition.
The Phi U chapter took some time to establish, with the process being started by the nutrition council president for 2009-2011, Sahar Rahimi.
The next year, the 2011-12 president, Helena Machaj Ramadan, and vice president Jackie Angulo worked to complete the process of getting a new chapter approved, both by LLU leadership and Phi U’s screening process.
"Phi U gives LLU students the opportunity to gain national recognition for their hard work and taps them into a network of professionals who can help them advance in their careers," said Ms. Rahimi, who graduated in 2011 with a B.S./M.A. in nutrition and dietetics. She now works as a clinical dietitian for Southwest Healthcare System in the Temecula area.
In addition to establishing Phi U, the LLU Nutrition Council Student Association--which has now grown to include 64 students--has run an education program that aims to increase the knowledge of its own members as well as others. The students taught a cooking class at the School of Public Health’s Healthy People conference in March, worked booths at health fairs, organized guest lectures by registered dietitians, created a review course for the registered dietitian exam, and presented a conference designed to foster dialogue between future dietitians and future physicians on the LLU campus.