Fellowships

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation is excited to be collaborating with the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics' Research, International, and Scientific Affairs team and other stakeholders and partners to create and offer fellowship opportunities for current and future credentialed food and nutrition practitioners at all career levels that advance fellow skills, knowledge, and visibility, hone the fellow's expertise, and advance the Foundation and Academy strategic plans.

Our Foundation has invested more than $1.65 million in Fellowships that deploy dynamic registered dietitian nutritionists in the US and globally to address the greatest food and nutrition challenges throughout the world. Fellows conduct research and provide nutrition education that improves and sustains nutritional health locally and globally, including robust dissemination activities.

The Foundation's successful fellowship model is currently being scaled to:

  • Accelerate improvements in the health of the public, including prevention and well-being, health care and health systems, and food and nutrition safety and security
  • Create unique educational opportunities for credentialed and future practitioners at all levels
  • Expand practitioner expertise, including leadership skills
  • Demonstrate the value of credentialed practitioners and nutrition interventions in a variety of settings and areas of practice, both in the U.S. and globally

2019 Foundation Fellows and Project Updates

Foundation Fellowships: Advancing the Profession, Public Health, and Strategic Priorities

During FNCE® 2021, Academy learned about the Foundation’s Fellowship program and the impact Foundation fellows have had on the profession. Participants looked at the Foundation’s application for the new Advancing the Practice in Nutrition and Dietetics: Doctoral Standards Fellowship, which is open through November 22, as well as a sneak peek at an upcoming fellowship opportunity opening on Monday, October 18. A current fellow provided a sneak peek on her fellowship project and tips on how to optimize your fellowship application.

Current Fellowship Opportunities

Grace L. Ostenso Nutrition and Public Policy Fellowship

The Foundation is seeking a doctoral-prepared, RDN member of the Academy to serve as a fellow. The fellow will participate in a public policy opportunity in collaboration with the American Association for the Advancement of Science. The fellowship begins on September 1, 2022 in Washington, DC. This opportunity is a full-time fellowship role for one year. Applications are due by 5:00 pm CT on Thursday, May 26, 2022.

2022 Evidence Analysis Center Summer Research Fellowship

The Foundation is seeking two doctoral students who are RDN members of the Academy to serve as their 2022 Summer Evidence Analysis Center fellows. The fellows will work closely with the Academy’s Research, International and Scientific Affairs EAC team and content experts in the proposed research areas. The fellowships begin on May 16, 2022 and are full-time fellowship roles for 12 weeks. Applications are due Wednesday, April 13, 2022.


Current Fellows

IDEA Fellow:
Marie Allsopp, DrPH, MPH, MS, RD, LD/N, CHES

Marie Allsopp, DrPH, MPH, MS, RD, LD/N, CHES

Project: Prioritizing Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility in Nutrition and Dietetics: Overcoming Obstacles to RDN and NDTR Recruitment, Education and Advancement

Funded by: The Nutrition and Dietetics Educators and Preceptors and member leader Diane Heller, MMSc, RDN, LD, FAND

Dr. Marie Allsopp is a Clinical Assistant Professor at Purdue University in the Department of Nutrition Science. Through her fellowship, she is building on the important work of the Academy’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee to build a framework to identify and more fully understand barriers to success for students of diverse backgrounds and cultures. Her work includes identifying barriers that students of diverse backgrounds and cultures face in becoming RDNs and NDTRs; identifying obstacles for RDNs and NDTRs of diverse backgrounds and cultures in advancing in the profession; creating a framework with solutions to support students, RDNs, and NDTRs of diverse backgrounds and cultures; and enhancing pre-professional and continuing education for RDNs and students in the area of cultural competency and cultural humility to support the United States’ diverse population.

Marie is passionate about pursuing pedagogical practices to increase undergraduate student engagement as well as diversity and inclusion. Her line of scholarship of teaching and learning includes using multi-media to engage students, collaborative learning, service-learning, and flipped classrooms. In fall of 2019, Marie was a fellow of Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation (IMPACT), which was a Chronicle of Higher Education 2018 Innovator for promoting classroom culture change. Prior to joining academia, she accrued over a decade of work experience as a registered dietitian in clinical, community, and customer service settings in in the South. Subsequent to completing her Doctor of Public Health degree in 2015, Marie held full-time posts at Miami University (OH) and later at Mississippi State University. Marie Allsopp has received recognition professionally as a practitioner, program (DPD) director, and assistant professor for her dedication and service and is a member of NDEP, NOBIDAN, and the DBC DPG.

Accelerating Food Security Fellow:
Betsy Anderson Steeves, PhD, RDN

Betsy Anderson Steeves, PhD, RDN

Project: Accelerating Food Security: Food Supply Chain Innovation

Funded by: National Dairy Council

Dr. Betsy Anderson Steeves is an Assistant Professor in the Public Health Nutrition program and Director of the HEALTHE Research Lab at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Through her fellowship, she is leading a new research project focused on evaluating innovative solutions that increased the supply of nutritious food for food insecure individuals in rural, suburban, and urban communities during the COVID-19 pandemic.

As part of this work, Betsy is leading an advisory group of experts and working closely with the Foundation and the Academy’s RISA team to conduct case study research on multiple food distribution sites that have utilized a variety of innovative distribution models to successfully provide nutritious foods to food insecure communities.

Betsy is a Registered Dietitian and holds a doctoral degree in Public Health from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She completed her Master’s in Public Health Nutrition and Dietetic Internship at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Her research interests focus on the intersection of food access, food security, and health equity, with an emphasis on exploring strategies to increase healthy food acquisition through interventions and innovations in food retail settings, the charitable feeding system, and federal nutrition programs.

Grace L. Ostenso Nutrition and Public Policy Fellow:
Amanda Berhaupt-Glickstein

Amanda Berhaupt-Glickstein

Project: Grace L. Ostenso Nutrition and Public Policy fellowship in partnership with the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s Congressional Science and Engineering Fellows Program

Funded by: The estate of Dr. Grace L. Ostenso and Helen and Ed Hintz

Dr. Amanda Berhaupt-Glickstein previously served as the Research & Engagement Advisor for the Access to Nutrition Initiative, a non-profit that benchmarks food and beverage manufacturers' nutrition commitments, practices, and disclosures.

This fellowship is a collaboration with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and their Congressional Science and Engineering Fellows Program. Amanda is spending a year working in Washington, DC as a special assistant providing scientific input to U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand’s staff.

Amanda received her PhD in Applied & Community Nutrition from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, where her dissertation focused on, “Qualified Health Claims: Communicating the Scientific Certainty about Functional Food Relationships to Consumers.” She received her Masters of Science in Dietetics and Nutrition from and completed her dietetic internship at Florida International University, and completed her BA in Psychology at University at Albany.

Amanda is an active member of the Academy and its International affiliate. Additionally, she is the owner of her own consulting company, ABG Consulting, LLC, where she provides technical support to companies on a variety of research topics. Prior to these roles, she served as an ORISE Research Fellow for the US Food & Drug Administration from 2014-2015.

Advancing the Practice in Nutrition and Dietetics Fellow:
Jody Vogelzang, PhD, RDN, FADA, FAND, CHES

Jody Vogelzang, PhD, RDN, FADA, FAND, CHES

Project: Advancing the Practice in Nutrition and Dietetics

Funded by: The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics

Dr. Jody Vogelzang previously served as an assistant professor and program director at Grand Valley State University. Through her fellowship, she will work closely with the Foundation and ACEND® to lead a program of work that includes:

  • Supporting the creation of standards for an advanced practice doctorate in nutrition program
  • Coordinating all aspects of a clinical skills workshop for program directors, faculty, and preceptors
  • Providing additional resources and materials based on ACEND® Future Education Model data

Jody is a registered dietitian and holds a doctoral degree from Walden University, completed her Master’s in Health Sciences degree from Grand Valley State University, and completed her undergraduate degree from Michigan State University. She is an experienced educator and has been an active volunteer leader of the Academy and Foundation throughout her career.

Research Fellow:
Gabriela Montenegro-Bethancourt, PhD

Gabriela Montenegro-Bethancourt, PhD

Project: Early Complementary Feeding of Eggs in Rural Guatemala

Funded by: Egg Nutrition Center

Gabriela Montenegro-Bethancourt is a Guatemalan nutritionist who is interested in improving the quality of life in children with fewer opportunities to develop their full potential through promoting adequate nutrition. In her fellowship, she is serving as study coordinator and working with primary investigators and Maya Health Alliance/Wuqu’ Kawoq in Tecpán, Guatemala to conduct research that is examining the impact of the daily provision of eggs on child development. She holds a PhD in Food Sciences and Human Nutrition from Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität (Bonn, Germany), a Masters of Science in International Public Health from Vrije Universteit (Amsterdam, Netherlands), and a Nutrition Degree from Universidad de San Carlos (Guatemala City, Guatemala). Prior to her fellowship, Gabriela served as a research methods teacher in various universities in her hometown (Quetzaltenango, Guatemala) and as an affiliated researcher at CeSSIAM (a research Institute in Guatemala), where she worked on a number of nutrition-related studies. She is member of the Nutrition Leaders Program for the Latin American region (IUNS) and the Guatemalan Academy of Medical, Physics and Natural Sciences.

Nutrition in Food Retail Program Development Fellow:
Allison Yoder, MA, RDN, LD

Allison Yoder, MA, RDN, LD

Project: Food as Medicine

Funded by: Walmart, the Academy Foundation Research Endowment, the Bell Institute and Topco

Allison Yoder is an award-winning registered dietitian nutritionist and leader in the retail health and wellness industry, specializing in the strategic development of wellness programming. Through her fellowship, she is developing a concept and scope for how to leverage RDNs in the food retail environment. Allison has a passion for improving the health of individuals and communities and utilizes data analytics and her extensive background in health promotion and retail nutrition to produce cost-effective and results-driven wellness strategies to improve nutrition and health outcomes. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Dietetics from Iowa State University and has a Master’s degree in Health Promotion from the University of Alabama. She is certified in adult weight management and is a trained lifestyle coach through the National Diabetes Prevention and Recognition program. Prior to the fellowship, she spent 13 years at Hy-Vee.


Past Fellows

Jenica Abram, MPH, RDN

Jenica Abram, MPH, RDN

Project: GENIE Development and Validation

Funded by: ConAgra Foods Foundation

In her role as the ConAgra Foods Foundation Nutrition Education Research Fellow at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Jenica Abram worked as a primary member of the project team responsible for the design and validation of the Guide for Effective Nutrition Interventions and Education.

Stephen Alajajian, RDN

Stephen Alajajian, RDN

Project: Maya Health Alliance/Wuqu' Kawoq

Funded by: The Academy Foundation Nutrition Education for the Public Fund

Stephen Alajajian is a registered dietitian nutritionist with a passion for serving culturally and linguistically diverse people. Through his fellowship, he is currently working with Maya Health Alliance/Wuqu' Kawoq in Tecpán, Guatemala. In this role, he is overseeing the implementation research and quality improvement aspects of a garden research project and participating in nutrition-related efforts for the organization. Prior to this fellowship year, he served as a Foundation Fellow with Gardens for Health International in Rwanda as Senior Nutrition Technical Adviser. He completed his undergraduate degree in dietetics at University of Vermont and his dietetic internship at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, Massachusetts. Previously, he worked as a nutrition consultant for the Clinica Sanjuanerita in Guatemala and as a maternal-child nutritionist at the East Boston Neighborhood Health Center.

Lauren Au, PhD, RD

Lauren Au, PhD, RD

Project: Grace L. Ostenso Nutrition and Public Policy Fellowship

Funded by: The Academy Foundation Ostenso Fund

Lauren Au is an Assistant Researcher at University of California, Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Nutrition Policy Institute. The Foundation fellowship provided her the opportunity to serve one year as a Congressional fellow in Washington, D.C.

Courtney Bliss, MS, RDN, CNSC

Courtney Bliss, MS, RDN, CNSC

Project: Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics and Staffing Optimization Study (now the AAIM – Academy and ASPEN Indicators to Diagnose Malnutrition Study) – Pediatric Emphasis

Funded by: Pediatric Nutrition Practice Group

Courtney Bliss is a registered dietitian nutritionist who enjoys the challenge of ensuring growth and good nutritional status during metabolically stressed states. In her fellowship, she is working with primary investigators to plan, execute, and publish research conducted for the Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics and Staffing Optimization Study specific to the pediatric population. She completed her undergraduate work at Simmons College and completed both her dietetic internship and Master’s degree in nutrition at Arizona State University. She has prior experience as a PICU dietitian, Cardiac Transplant dietitian, and Research Coordinator at Phoenix Children’s Hospital in critical care.

Sandra Carpenter, MS, RDN

Sandra Carpenter, MS, RDN

Project: Simulation Area Identification and Development

Funded by: Funded by the Commission on Dietetics Registration

Sandra Carpenter served as Simulation Research Fellow at Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Greater Pittsburgh Area Health, Wellness and Fitness. As a registered dietitian specializing in diabetes management, nutrition support, cardiovascular health and food service management, she is a passionate educator and worksite wellness professional who leads by example.

Lindsey Field, MS, RDN

Lindsey Field, MS, RDN

Project: Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics Pilot Trial

Funded by: Abbott Nutrition

Lindsey Field is a registered and licensed dietitian who holds a Master’s of Science degree in Nutrition from Texas A&M University. She served as the Abbott Nutrition Malnutrition Research Fellow from 2014-2015. During the fellowship, she served as project coordinator for the Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics Validation Pilot Study. She assisted with data extraction and analysis and communicated regularly with dietitian participants at three study sites.

Alice Figueroa, MPH, RDN

Alice Figueroa, MPH, RDN

Project: Central America Malnutrition – Policy Perspective

Funded by: The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation Wimpfheimer-Guggenheim Fund for International Exchange in Nutrition, Dietetics, and Management

Alice Figueroa is a registered dietitian nutritionist who is passionate about promoting universal access to nutrition support, health services, and wholesome foods for all. Through her fellowship, Alice conducted research to address chronic malnutrition and stunting in Central America. Her research focused on identifying gaps in nutrition services in Central America and vulnerable indigenous populations in Guatemala who are at increased risk for malnutrition and stunting. She earned a Master’s in Public Health from New York University, where she also completed her dietetic internship. She holds an honors degree in International Relations with a focus on healthcare policy from Tulane University and is a CDC’s National Diabetes Prevention Program Certified Lifestyle Coach. She is also a James Beard Foundation National Scholar Award Recipient and a Natural Foods Chef.

Leigh A. Gantner, PhD, RD

Leigh A. Gantner, PhD, RD

Project: Grace L. Ostenso Nutrition and Public Policy Fellowship

Funded by: The Academy Foundation Ostenso Fund

Leigh Gantner is an analyst at USDA in the Washington D.C. Metro Area. She completed a PhD in nutritional sciences from Cornell University, where her dissertation was entitled, “Building environments to promote healthy weights among childbearing women.” The Foundation fellowship provided her the opportunity to serve one year as a Congressional fellow in Washington, D.C.

Janice Giddens, MS, RDN

Janice Giddens, MS, RDN

Project: Gardens for Health International

Funded by: The Academy Foundation Nutrition Education for the Public Fund

Janice Giddens was the first Gardens for Health International Fellow in Rwanda. During her fellowship, she developed and implemented an antenatal nutrition pilot curriculum reaching hundreds of women and families and participated in Ministry of Health Technical Nutrition meetings.

Cherine Hatem, RD

Cherine Hatem, RD

Project: Academy Foundation 2021 Summer Evidence Analysis Center Fellowship

Funded by: Academy Foundation Research Endowment

Cherine Hatem is a doctoral student at the University of Houston pursuing a PhD in kinesiology with a focus on obesity studies. She previously earned a Bachelor’s degree in biochemistry and a Master’s of science degree in Nutrition and completed a dietetic internship at the University of Houston.

Through her fellowship, Cherine completed a mentored, 12-week research experience with the Academy’s Evidence Analysis Center (EAC). The research team sought to examine the effectiveness of medical nutrition therapy on lipid outcomes in adults with dyslipidemia using a systematic review and meta-analysis approach. Specifically, the research question was: “In adults with dyslipidemia, what is the effectiveness of medical nutrition therapy interventions provided by a dietitian or international equivalent, compared to usual care or no intervention, on lipid outcomes?”

Her doctoral research is focused on understanding, preventing and correcting childhood obesity through the promotion of healthy eating behaviors. She has worked on several research projects, including ones that examined intervention studies aimed at testing strategies to reduce childhood obesity within a family setting, parental influences on eating behaviors, rapid weight gain in early infancy and toddlerhood, and challenges within the dietetic profession.

PNPG Pediatric Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics Study Fellow:
Julie Long, MS, MPH, RDN

Julie Long, MS, MPH, RDN

Project: Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics and Staffing Optimization Study (now the AAIM – Academy and ASPEN Indicators to Diagnose Malnutrition Study) – Pediatric Emphasis

Funded by: Pediatric Nutrition Practice Group

Julie Long is a registered dietitian nutritionist who is interested in improving the lives of children through helping provide access and resources to adequate and appropriate nutrition. In her fellowship, she is working with primary investigators to plan, execute, and publish research conducted for the Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics and Staffing Optimization Study specific to the pediatric population. Prior to beginning the fellowship, she was the Project Manager of a research study assessing micronutrient absorption of young children at risk for environmental enteric dysfunction in Bangladesh. She obtained her Bachelor’s in Nutrition from California Polytechnic State University and completed her dietetic internship, MS in Nutrition and Wellness, and MPH from Benedictine University.

Alex Mohr

Alex Mohr

Project: Academy Foundation 2021 Summer Evidence Analysis Center Fellowship

Funded by: Academy Foundation Research Endowment

Alex Mohr is a PhD candidate currently enrolled in the Exercise and Nutritional Sciences doctoral program at Arizona State University. He is also seeking his registered dietitian nutritionist credential from the ACEND-accredited ASU program.

Through his fellowship, Alex completed a mentored,12-week research experience with the Academy’s Evidence Analysis Center. The research team sought to examine the effectiveness of medical nutrition therapy on lipid outcomes in adults with dyslipidemia using a systematic review and meta-analysis approach. Specifically, the research question was: “In adults with dyslipidemia, what is the effectiveness of medical nutrition therapy interventions provided by a dietitian or international equivalent, compared to usual care or no intervention, on lipid outcomes?”

Alex’s doctoral research is focused on the impact of diet on overweight/obesity status, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease using both basic science and clinical approaches. His thesis work aims to provide a better understanding of how different calorie-restricted diet models impact the gut microbiome, fecal metabolome, and systemic inflammatory profile in obese individuals.

Debra Petitpain, MS, RDN, LDN

Debra Petitpain, MS, RDN, LDN

Project: Food Security Solutions – Community-Based Pilot

Funded by: General Mills Foundation

Debra (Debbie) Petitpain is a registered dietitian nutritionist who currently serves as the Wellness Director for the Medical University of South Carolina. In her fellowship, she led the development and implementation of a robust communications, engagement, and dissemination plan to promote increased awareness and use of the Food Security Solutions guide and tools and the ANDHII Survey App in the public health community and to related stakeholders. In addition to her fellowship, Debbie represented the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and its members as a national Spokesperson.

Marie Spiker, PhD, MSPH, RDN

Marie Spiker, PhD, MSPH, RDN

Project: Foundation Future of Food Program

Funded by: National Dairy Council

Marie Spiker is a registered dietitian nutritionist who advocates for expanding the role of credentialed food and nutrition practitioners in shaping healthy and sustainable food systems. Through her fellowship, she is working to empower future food and nutrition professionals to be leaders in sustainable food systems, food and nutrition security, and global malnutrition. She has conducted a wide range of food systems research related to urban agriculture in Baltimore, food loss and waste in the United States, and vegetable supply chains and food security in India. She obtained her Bachelor of Science in Public Health and her Bachelor of Arts in Medical Anthropology from the University of Washington. She also completed her dietetic internship at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center and her MSPH in Human Nutrition at the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She is currently a doctoral candidate in Human Nutrition at the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. She has received the Abell Award in Urban Policy, served as the Gordis Teaching Fellow at John Hopkins University, and received multi-disciplinary training in public health nutrition, systems science, and medical anthropology.

Lee Unangst, MS, RDN

Lee Unangst, MS, RDN

Project: Hunger Free Communities (now the Food Security Solutions Project)

Funded by: General Mills Foundation

Lee Unangst is currently a consultant in nutrition and informatics, providing services in the areas standardized terminology, application and tool development, and nutrition counseling. In his role as a fellow and as part of the Foundation’s Hunger Free Communities project, he worked closely with the Academy’s Research team to plan, execute, and publish a modification to Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Health Informatics Infrastructure so that ANDHII can be used for public health nutrition projects. He completed his undergraduate work at the University of Maryland and his Master’s degree in Information Systems at the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Chris Vogliano, MS, RDN

Chris Vogliano, MS, RDN

Project: Agriculture, Food and Health Consensus Conference & Food Waste

Funded by: The Academy Foundation Research Endowment

Chris Vogliano is a registered dietitian with a passion for creating a sustainable and waste-free food system that is healthy for both people and the planet. During his fellowship, he was the primary member of a team that hosted an Agriculture, Nutrition and Health consensus conference at the Academy headquarters with nearly two dozen thought leaders and experts. Following the conference, he authored a proceedings paper that was published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, as well as a proceedings paper for the Foundation’s 2015 FNCE Symposium, “The RDNs’ Guide to Plentiful, Nutrient-Dense Food for the World.”

Lindsay Woodcock, MS, RD, LDN

Lindsay Woodcock, MS, RD, LDN

Project: Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics and Staffing Optimization Study (now the AAIM – Academy and ASPEN Indicators to Diagnose Malnutrition Study) – Adult Emphasis

Funded by: Commission on Dietetics Registration

Lindsay Woodcock is a registered dietitian nutritionist with a background in clinical research. In her fellowship, she worked with primary investigators to plan, execute, and publish research conducted for the Malnutrition Clinical Characteristics and Staffing Optimization Study specific to the adult population. Lindsay completed her Bachelors of Arts in Mathematics and Religious studies at Lafayette College, her dietetic internship at Wellness Workdays, and her Masters of Science in Human Nutrition from Drexel University in 2013. Prior to her fellowship, she worked at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, where she worked on a number of studies and diet trials related to the treatment of Inflammatory Bowel Disease.

Elizabeth Yakes Jimenez, PhD, RDN

Elizabeth Yakes Jimenez, PhD, RDN

Project: Hunger Free Communities (now the Food Security Solutions Project)

Funded by: General Mills Foundation

Elizabeth Yakes Jimenez is currently a research associate professor at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center in Albuquerque, NM. She also serves as the Director of the Dietetics Practice Based Research Network at the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. During her time as a fellow, she developed and validated a food and nutrition security facilitation guide and tools to assist communities with identifying and prioritizing appropriate interventions to address hunger.