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courses for grad students

C.J. Fuller cjfuller at mindspring.com
Thu Nov 20 11:58:48 EST 1997

I went to grad school at Cornell, where the only required course in
nutrition was the glorified journal club seminar.  Theoretically you could
get a PhD in nutrition without taking a nutrition course other than the
seminar.  That gave you a lot of freedom, but that did not foster much
communication between the nutritional biochemists, international nutrition
people, and the community nutrition people--unless you played on the
intramural hockey team.  

In my current dept at UNC-Greensboro, we require all grad students to take
a core nutrient metabolism course.  This requires biochem, advanced
nutrition and physiology as prereqs and contains lots of molecular
biology.  This gives our students a common knowledge base and forces more
interaction (although the basic and applied students still sit on opposite
ends of the room).  Often this poses a problem in recruiting re-entry
students-psych majors, or dietitians who want to get masters degrees in
applied nutrition.  They have to take so many courses to get their
applications looked at that they decide to go someplace else.

I like the idea of core courses for grad students in the sciences, but the
program should not be so regimented that they don't have time to get into
the lab and do research early or they can't stretch themselves by taking
one or two  classes outside their committee's dictates.

Cindy Fuller

C.J. Fuller
<mailto:cjfuller at erickson.uncg.edu>
<mailto:cjfuller at mindspring.com>

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