• By Julie Stefanski
  • In Uncategorized
  • December 11, 2018

Don’t You Wish You Were an IUP SAND Member?

The Student Association of Nutrition and Dietetics (SAND) at Indiana University of Pennsylvania
By Paige Finkenbinder, 2018-2019 SAND President

The 2017-18 SAND Executive Board with our 2018 National Nutrition Month guest speaker, Caroline Passerrello, Registered Dietitian and Spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

The Student Association of Nutrition and Dietetics (SAND) is a student-led organization made up of about 80 nutrition and dietetics majors at Indiana University of Pennsylvania (IUP). Community service and professional development are two main focus points within our club. For community service, we have developed and executed ideas for the Indiana Farmers’ Market: Kids Corner and volunteered at the community at Zion Lutheran Food Bank and the Food Co-Op of Indiana. At the Indiana Farmers Market, myself (SAND President) and many of our members, got together and organized and created the event. We provided nutrition education using MyPlate, as well as helped children to make a Halloween-themed season- spider crackers with peanut butter, wheat crackers and pretzels and a Dr. Seuss “Cat in the Hat” fruit snack made of banana, strawberries and a grape. The kids really enjoyed this experience and parents commented that they were excited to see their kids take an interest in making healthy snacks. SAND volunteers at the Zion Lutheran Food Bank as well as the Indiana Food Co-Op are responsible for packaging and organizing food, cleaning of produce/shelves and greeting customers. All of these experiences have helped us to contribute to our community and gain networking experiences.

Focused on the Future

SAND also offers several professional development activities to our student members. The Mentor and Mentee program (M&M) allows Mentors (seniors and juniors) to be matched with Mentees (sophomores and freshman) and participate in social activities like snack nights, work out sessions, and pumpkin picking. Additionally, SAND hosts guest speakers to talk about resume building, jobs for our majors, and sharing of experiences that we have gained through volunteering and working. SAND also hosts several professional speakers to come in or Skype to our members each semester. In the past we have had speakers who are recent graduates going through the dietetic internship, current dietitians working in geriatric and clinical settings, USDA representatives, and private practice dietitians.

Planning for National Nutrition Month 2019

SAND is looking forward to next semester where, during National Nutrition Month, we will hold a green smoothie sale, Crock-pot Cook-off, and speaker Andrew Wade, registered dietitian and owner of Case Specific Nutrition. The SAND members look forward to introducing the concept of green smoothies to students on campus who have never tried them. A spinach banana smoothie will be offered. This year will mark our third annual Crock-pot Cook-off. Each year, participants are required to use a “nutrition challenge ingredient” in their Crock Pot recipe. Last year, participants were required to include a whole grain into their soup recipe. Proceeds from the cook-off were given to the Food Co-Op of Indiana. Winners of the cook-off receive prize packages donated by local businesses. Last year, S.A.N.D was able to raise $300 for the Food Co-Op of Indiana.

SAND donated $300 to the Food Co-Op of Indiana, an organization which is reliant on community and student volunteers.

SAND members use food puppets to teach nutrition education using MyPlate at the Indiana Farmers’ Market.


National Nutrition Month 2018 Crock-Pot Cook-off featuring recipes using whole grains!