Members of BRTC’s Dietetics Department had the opportunity to attend two conferences during the spring semester, according to Kathy Murdock, Dietetics instructor. In March they attended the Spring Conference of the Association of Nutrition & Foodservice Professionals (ANFP), and in April they attended the Arkansas Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (ArAND) annual meeting. Both meetings were held in Little Rock.
Murdock, along with Christina Derbes, Dietetics instructor, and Sandra Parker, Cafeteria Coordinator, attended the ANFP conference with several students and, in addition to presenting, they heard speakers on a range of subjects from menu planning, effects of sodium, eating disorders, and sanitation & safety. They also sampled many products at a vendor expo.
The students performed a skit called “Fear Factor” that addressed the dangers of bacteria, and Murdock did a presentation on new trends in food service and how those trends affect long-term care. Derbes talked about factors that cause bacterial contamination in food. Parker serves on the ANFP State Board of Directors and is NE Arkansas ANFP District President.
Derbes, Murdock and Dietetics students, along with Angela Caldwell, VP/Technical Education, attended the ArAND meeting in April where they heard speakers on the subjects of budgeting, building rapport with co-workers, peers and patients, leadership development, IBS & lactose intolerance, connecting with the media and ethics in healthcare. They also attended a vendor expo where they visited with representatives and sampled products from various companies, such as United Medical Infusion, Nutricia, Simply Thick, Nestle, Tyson, Sara Lee, Abbott, Ben E. Keith, US Foods, Midwest Dairy and the Beef Council.
“Along with learning about subjects in the fields of nutrition and foodservice, annual meetings for both ArAND and ANFP give students the opportunity to network with professionals in their field of interest, as well as meet future potential employers,” Murdock explained. “Seeing the many areas that exist in this field opens their eyes to the endless possibilities for career advancement and employment.”