• By Julie Stefanski
  • In Uncategorized
  • March 9, 2019

March Research Corner Featuring Madeline Joyce

Welcome to the March Research Spotlight!
This month Madeline Joyce, a graduate student at the University of Pittsburgh, shares her nutrition journey.

Where do you live currently? Is there anything you love about where you’re located? Where did you grow up?

I grew up and currently live just outside the city of Pittsburgh. I love having the “best of both worlds” of living near the city while also living in a suburban neighborhood.

I noticed you’re currently a graduate student at the University of Pittsburgh, what are you currently working on/researching?

I am currently working on a research project started at my undergraduate university, John Carroll University in Cleveland, OH alongside my project advisor, Jacquelyn Zera. The topic is “The Influence of Nutrition and Physical Activity Behaviors on Mental Health in College Students.” We analyzed student data from the National College Health Assessment II to determine any associations. We are currently in the process of developing our manuscript.

Where did you go to school? College, internship, etc.

I went to John Carroll University to study Exercise Science. I decided my sophomore year that I wanted to become a registered dietitian, so I applied to the Post-Baccalaureate program at the University of Pittsburgh. I’m currently in my 1st year of the Coordinated Master program completing my community rotations.

What did you want to do after your studies were completed?

I want to become a sports dietitian. I don’t know what population yet (youth, collegiate, or elite), but I have experience in all aspects and I’m excited to see where they take me!

Have you published anything professionally?

Not yet; although, we’re hoping our manuscript will get accepted to one of our prospective journals.

How do you feel that your work in research has helped in application to real people?

At John Carroll, we had stress-relieving events during finals week; however, only one pertained to nutrition. We’re hoping that our study will encourage colleges and universities to incorporate more nutrition (and physical activity) in those type of events.

Why did you decide to focus on nutrition as a career?

I always had a passion for nutrition growing up, but I always thought of it as a hobby. After discovering the relationship between proper nutrition and exercise through my exercise science courses, I realized that I wanted to help other athletes perform their best by educating on fueling their bodies for success.

How do you like to spend your free time?

I spend hours in the gym doing Olympic lifts and spending time with my friends. Sometimes I just go there to hang out and not even exercise!

What is your favorite food? Is there anything people be shocked you like or hate?


My favorite food is definitely sushi – I never get bored of it!

I think some people are shocked when I tell them that I also have an interest in oncology nutrition – it’s completely opposite of sports nutrition!