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Stop & Shop Offers Scholarship To Increase Diversity In Dietetics

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Last updated on September 14th, 2022 at 12:47 pm

Stop & Shop is furthering its commitment to support racial equality with a new partnership focused on fostering diversity in the field of nutrition and dietetics.

On Dec. 9, Rudy DiPietro, Stop & Shop VP of sales and merchandising, presented $50,000 to the University of New Haven in Connecticut to establish the “Stop & Shop Diversity in Nutrition & Dietetics Scholarship,” an endowed fund that will provide financial assistance to students studying to become nutritionists or registered dietitians.

The scholarship is the second that Stop & Shop has established this year in partnership with a higher education institution to drive diversity in dietetics; its first was established in September in partnership with Framingham State University in Massachusetts.

According to the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Commission on Dietetic Registration, more than 71 percent of the nation’s roughly 106,000 registered dietitians are non-Hispanic white – and only 3 percent are African American. According to the same survey, the demographic profile of nutrition practitioners has essentially remained unchanged since 2007.

“We chose to partner with the University of New Haven in this effort because of their efforts to recruit and retain students of color – and because they share in our commitment to driving more diversity in this profession,” said DiPietro. “Together, our aim is to break down historic barriers in the field of nutrition, so that more aspiring dietitians of color advance and ultimately create lasting change in the field and in our communities.”

Entry requirements for the field of nutrition often act as steep and costly barriers that are only getting more challenging with a new graduate-degree mandate effective 2024, which requires that prospective nutritionists earn a graduate degree in order to take the registration exam needed to enter the field.

“We are very grateful for the generosity of Stop & Shop,” said Brian Otis, VP for university advancement at the University of New Haven. “We share Stop & Shop’s commitment to increasing diversity in the nutrition and dietetics fields, and we are grateful for the important investment they are making in our students’ futures.”

Through the endowed fund, an annual scholarship will be awarded to undergraduate students enrolled at the university in the Nutrition Sciences program with significant financial need and who meet the university’s academic requirements for scholarships.

The Department of Nutrition Sciences in the School of Health Sciences developed a course of study that enables graduates to actively participate in the changing food environment, in the nutrition education process and in health care delivery systems according to the highest standards of client service and professional ethics.

The university provides students with two paths to either become an entry-level dietitian or to be accepted in an ACEND-accredited dietetic internship to become a registered dietitian or into a graduate program, or to pursue a career in a food, nutrition or related field.

In July 2020, Stop & Shop launched Nutrition Partners, a dietitian program created to support health and wellness by offering community members access to licensed registered dietitians for one-on-one consultations, nutrition classes and more.

Stop & Shop’s team of dietitians can be consulted by customers who want to discuss food and nutrition-related questions around starting or maintaining a healthy and balanced diet.

The Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. LLC is an Ahold Delhaize USA company and employs 58,000 associates and operates more than 400 stores throughout Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New York and New Jersey.

To learn more about Stop & Shop, visit stopandshop.com.

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