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October 2008

Inaugural Fuqua Graduate Seminar Series

The Department of Foods and Nutrition honored the life and career of Dr. Mary Fuqua by renaming the graduate student seminar “The Fuqua Graduate Seminar Series.”  The inaugural seminar was held September 5, 2008.  Fiona McKiernan, a MS Student in the Interpartmental Nutrition Program gave the seminar, “Spontaneous Drinking Patterns in Humans: Implications for Energy Balance.”  Dr. Mary Fuqua was professor emeritus of the Department of Foods and Nutrition and associate dean emeritus of the College of Consumer and Family Sciences.  She was an outstanding teacher and administrator who also had a profound impact on the community in her retirement.  From 1973 to 1987 she served as Associate Dean of Home Economics Extension and  Associate Dean of Consumer and Family Sciences.  Dr. Fuqua’s name will be consistently honored in the future as each graduate student presents that seminar in her name.    For additional information about making contributions to the Fuqua scholarship, contact the CFS Alumni and Development Office, 765-494-7890.

Dietetic Interns Serve Mobile Food Pantry


Interns in the Coordinated Program in Dietetics at Purdue begin their supervised practice experiences with a variety of community organizations throughout the state.  At the beginning of fall semester, Purdue interns, Allison Query and Erica Nelson, were placed with the Food Bank of Northern Indiana in South Bend that serves several surrounding counties.  An overstock of food at the Starke County food pantry required an innovative distribution solution to prevent spoilage of food that lacked adequate storage space and to insure that people in need of food receive safe food of high quality.  The food bank staff quickly designed a mobile food pantry.  Unfortunately, they lacked enough staff to properly run the mobile food pantry.  Allison and Erica jumped in to help even though it was the first day of their community rotation and only the second day as dietetic interns. They made two Mobile Food Pantry trips two days apart to North Judson and served over 500 families. On the first day, many people expressed how “times [were] so rough in Starke County.” Allison said “I noticed tears forming in my eyes when I witnessed a little boy run up and hug his father saying, ‘I’m so excited to eat.’  It’s hard to fathom what this food meant to this boy and his family.” Allison described the second visit, “there were people who received the goods from the following visit who came to us when we arrived and said ‘we don’t want any food today, we just want to help you give it out. Direct us to where we need to go to help you get started.’” One man who was homeless had walked 6 miles to get to the location. After receiving food the first visit, he walked the 6 miles again for the second visit.  However, for the second visit, he helped with unloading the meat from the trucks the entire 3 hours of the second visit. Allison now believes strongly that others need to engage in this type of experience stating, “Overall, it was an amazingly successful community project in which I hope others would get to experience. The gift of serving others is unlike any other and will last a lifetime.”

Food Safety for Bazaars, Buffets and Community Suppers

Many community groups and organizations prepare foods for Bazaars, buffets and community suppers.  Often the organizers of these events are unaware of the hidden danger of unsafe food handling practices. To help volunteers understand critical food-safety principles when preparing and serving food to large groups, Purdue Extension developed a short educational program.

The goal of this program is to help volunteers prepare and serve foodsafely for large groups such as family reunions, church dinners, and community gatherings.  This food may be prepared at the volunteer’s home and brought to the event, or prepared and served at the gathering.Food that is mishandled can cause very serious consequences for all, especially, infants, young children, older adults, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems.  To prevent foodborne illness, it is important that all people handling food whether in restaurants or at the Wednesday night church social be especially careful when preparing and serving food.

Information for the program is based on the Cooking for Groups: A Volunteer’s Guide to Food Safety publication from North Dakota.  Purdue Extension professionals Nancy Casada, Reba Colley, Peg Ehlers, Christina Ferroli, Georgia Wagner and Laura Palmer contributed to the program.For more information, contact Donna Vandergraff, vandergraff@purdue.edu.


Foods & Nutrition Department
Stone Hall, Room 213
700 West State Street
West Lafayette, IN

Phone: (765) 494-8228
Fax: (765) 494-0674

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