Department Of Nutrition, Food Service Management And Dietetics
The Department was started in the year 1985 offering an undergraduate course in Nutrition, Food Service Management and Dietetics and has crossed the milestone of 34 years since inception in the year 2019. The decade of 2000-2019 witnessed a landmark development of the Department with the introduction of M.Sc., Foods and Nutrition in the year 2003, B.Sc., Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics in the year 2005 and M.Phil Food and Nutrition in the year 2009 under the self supporting stream.
This course aims to develop the skills and core competencies relating to Nutrition and its application in the health care and hospitality sectors. The curriculum is designed, not only to enhance the student’s employability/career opportunities but also to transform the young minds to citizens with a strong social responsibility. To cater to the changing trends, internships and extension activities as part of outreach programs in reputed institutions such as Sri Ramachandra Medical College and Research Institute, Sundaram Medical Foundation and AGADA have been incorporated into the curriculum. The Department has also contributed to the establishment of a Diet Kitchen at Med India Hospital Chennai.
A considerable percentage of students (about 50%) pursue higher education in central universities and reputed colleges. About 35% are employed as Dietitians in corporate hospitals and health clinics/fitness centers. A certificate course on Baking Technology was initiated with the establishment of a full-fledged bakery unit, aiming at the development and enhancement of the entrepreneurial skills of the students. Also a course on Diabetes Education was offered to the undergraduate students in order to enhance their employability skill which was conducted in collaboration with AGADA Multispeciality Hospital. The Department offered a UGC-sponsored career oriented (one year program) Add-On course titled Technology of Food Processing and Baking for undergraduate students of various disciplines free of cost.
The Department also manages and operates an in- house crèche which caters to the needs of staff and student’s children. An MOU was signed with the Centre for Indian Knowledge System, Chennai in June 2013 to foster and instill a scientific temper and promote use of indigenous sustainable foods. The department also recognizes the need for product development on par with the tremendous growth of processed food industry thus fostering research with multinational companies such as Nestle India, Marico Industries and Aachi Masala Private Limited. A book titled “Nutrition Perspectives” edited by Dr. KRS Girija Shyamsundar with contributions from the faculty of Department of Nutrition was selected by The University of Madras for publication and release during its 150th Year of Celebrations. Similarly a booklet was also published titled, “All You want to know about obesity, Diabetes and Heart Disease”.