Dietary Management Students Gain Certifications in Food Safety

women standing with framed certificates

Dietary Management students (L to R) Sarah Jones, Sierra Chancellor, Deasarae Bell, Casey Waterson

As part of UACCM's new dietary management program, cohorts are taking food safety and sanitation during the fall 2020 semester. Recently, they completed a 10-hour training course and sat for the ServSafe exam offered by the National Restaurant Association. These students made excellent passing scores, completing this first step to becoming certified dietary managers.

ServSafe offers training and certification helps individual meet the standards in food safety with the most up-to-date and relevant information. It brings together the current best practices to meet the industry's changing needs.

According to the Center of Disease Control, 1 in 6 Americans (or 48 million people) gets sick, 128,000 are hospitalized, and 3,000 die of foodborne diseases. Reducing foodborne illness by just 10% would keep 5 million Americans from getting sick each year and save millions of dollars in health care costs. It is the work of certified dietary managers that prevent these illnesses from occurring.

This new program is a transformational opportunity for those who are passionate about nutrition and public health. A certified dietary manager is critical in the planning, storage, and preparation of meals. They assist in planning menus and inspect food to ensure proper dietary standards are met. Often these specialists counsel individuals on proper eating habits to lose weight or manage a chronic condition such as diabetes or heart disease. By becoming a certified dietary manager, examples of potential workplaces include government agencies that provide services on nutrition or health care settings such as hospitals and long-term care facilities.

"I've met several people who are very passionate about nutrition, food service, and healthcare but don't feel they are able to sacrifice 6 years of full-time college to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN),” said Erin Aylor, a UACCM nutrition instructor. “After just one year, successful students of our program will be eligible to take their credentialing exam to become a certified dietary manager and get out into the workforce.”

The 3-semester (16 credit hour) certificate program is accepting new students for spring 2021. All classes are on Monday nights for the convenience of working students. Contact Aylor for more information at 501-354-7579 or aylor@uaccm.edu

 

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