In the fall of 2013, incoming freshmen will be able to enroll in the first ever Nutritional Sciences program at Springfield College.
The program, which has been in the works for about five years, is the result of a lot of hard work and dedication from a core group of staff within and outside of the college.
Assistant Professor of Exercise Science, Dr. Richard Wood, is the director of the program and feels that it is the perfect fit for Springfield College.
“The program really came from a small group of faculty who saw a need,” said Wood. “I think it’s a logical fit with the mission of the college and with the types of programs we offer here. Springfield College is internationally known for wellness and physical activity, and nutrition goes hand in hand with both those concepts.”
The two components that really make this program unique is that unlike most nutritional sciences programs, Springfield’s will be a non-dietetics program. Additionally, undergraduate students will be required to write a thesis for their major, which is a rarity for the majority of nutritional sciences programs anywhere.
A dietetics program is one that leads an individual to become a registered dietician. By having a non-dietetics program, students will be lead towards other careers such as working in the food industry, as well as marketing and sales for products in the nutritional realm.
Unlike the Nutritional Sciences minor here (which has only a few courses), the major will offer a wide variety of classes in its curriculum.
Classes for the major include all of the sciences along with a few specialized courses such as Advanced Nutrition and Metabolism, Nutrition and Development and Food Service Management just to name a few.
In addition, this new program will also bring new faculty members on board.
“We are bringing in an additional faculty member effective this fall, and we are in the process of searching for that individual right now,” said Wood. “In the following year we will bring in another faculty member so that we can meet the needs of this program.”
With an excited staff and overly positive feedback from alumni, Wood and Springfield College are very excited to launch the Nutritional Sciences major. Already there is excitement and talk about the doors this program could open and what is to come.
“We hope to continue to grow the program and bring in a strong number of students and perhaps expand it,” explained Wood. “Maybe we will look at a dietetics program for the future and maybe we will look at a combined master’s degree program. I think the sky’s the limit here.”