HNFE Student SNAP Challenge3

Our projects provide opportunities for students to effectively communicate with diverse audiences, helping them be more competitive for placement with dietetic internships and future employment.

Video Podcast Project
FNP partners with the undergraduate dietetics class, Communicating with Food, to create emotion-based educational video podcasts.

FNP Video Podcasts:

  • Eat Smart
  • Move More
  • Stretching Your Food Dollars
  • Food Safety

Students who participate:

  • Create a professional product used by FNP’s field staff to educate limited-resource audiences how to make healthy lifestyle choices on a tight budget.
  • Develop practical skills in crafting emotion-based food and nutrition messages that resonate with the intended audiences.
  • Gain experience with video production, script writing, planning, filming, and post-production editing.
  • Craft social media messages that encourage online audiences to engage with the video podcasts and learn more about the topics presented.

National Nutrition Month Blog Series
Communicating with Food students write blog posts for National Nutrition Month that have appeared on FNP’s Eat Smart, Move More blog and the HNFE Librarian’s Notes from Newman blog.

  • Using the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetic’s yearly theme for National Nutrition Month, students showcase  written health communication skills and develop a online presence that will serve them as future professionals.
HNFE Student SNAP Challenge

SNAP Challenge Experiential Learning Project
Community Nutrition
students take the SNAP challenge, an exercise in empathy to experience the challenges faced by SNAP recipients juggling the competing demands of making healthy food choices on a limited budget.

Students who participate:

  • Pledge to limit their food budget to $32 for one week, simulating the average SNAP benefit in Virginia. In a unique twist on the challenge, students were encouraged to shop at the Blacksburg Farmers Market and experience the power of SNAP incentive programs, which matches up to $10 per visit.
  • Aim to meet the MyPlate food group requirements during the challenge. As future nutrition professionals, working with limited-resource populations necessitates designing appropriate interventions for clients on a limited budget.
  • Reflect on their experiences throughout the challenge on social media using the hashtag #fmSNAPchallenge.
  • Identify structural barriers affecting food choices for SNAP recipients and design appropriate interventions that target policy, systems, and environmental changes in addition to individual factors to improve diet quality.
Edi Nault

Summer Internship Program
FNP recruits rising junior and senior HNFE students to deliver nutrition education to youth at USDA sponsored Summer Food Service Program (SFSP) sites and other organizations that work with limited-resource youth audiences. Interns also deliver nutrition education and cooking demonstration programs at Farmers Market's that accept SNAP (food stamps).  Read more about the work of past Summer Interns.