Congratulations to the NEW LIFE Program Graduates!

On June 1st, 16 school nutrition professionals graduated from Nutrition, Education & Wellness: Leadership Institute for Excellence (NEW LIFE). These graduates participated in a seven-session knowledge and skill-building program designed to change the way school nutrition directors think and act as leaders. Additionally, they participated in online discussions to network and brainstorm about various topics. The knowledge learned and shared over the last year will serve all participants well in a time when school nutrition has a multitude of demands and new challenges.

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Heather Brunette
Jo-Ann Cavanagh
Anthony Grein
Gail Koutroubas
Dawn LaVallee
Lisa Leon
Tara Lightbody
Dianne Mucci
DebraLee Mugford
Heather Shastany
Hillary Standiford
Tess Sousa
Heather Torrey
Deborah Vaughn
Judy White
Dina Wiroll

To view more photos from the NEW LIFE graduation, visit our Pinterest page The JOHN STALKER INSTITUTE (JSI) Rocks.

This post was written by Robyn DeCiero, NEW LIFE Program Coordinator.

2016 Healthy Kids, Healthy Programs Summit: Day Two

Dr. Mitchell D. Chester, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Welcomed the audience

Dr. Mitchell D. Chester, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education Welcomed the audience

On May 25th, day two of the annual Healthy Kids, Healthy Programs Summit, the day began with a welcome message from Mitchell D. Chester, EdD, Commissioner of Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education.

The morning keynote given by Juliana Cohen, ScM, ScD, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Nutrition at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health, discussed Successful School Meals: Strategies to increase Selection and Consumption. During this presentation Dr. Juliana Cohen discussed some of her published research in which a significant increase in fruit and vegetable selection and consumption in schools that had chefs long term (seven months) was found. She concluded by pointing out that many of the benefits highlighted in her research are only seen after students have had time to acclimate to the new food choices available and when they are given adequate time to consume their meals.

Dr. Juliana Cohen discussed the strategies to increase selection and consumption

Dr. Juliana Cohen discussed strategies to increase selection and consumption

Breakout sessions continued into day two of the summit in the areas of Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child, Procurement, and Building Human Capital. Conference participants applied learned concepts to their districts by creating an action plan for how to succeed in implementing new ideas or changes to their programs.

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Robert Leshin addressed the audience during the News You Can Use presentation

After lunch Robert Leshin, MPA, Acting Director of the Office for Food and Nutrition Programs, Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, presented News You Can Use in which he discussed the year in review including MA trends in the National School Lunch Program.

Visit the 2016 Healthy Kids, Healthy Programs webpage for presentation files from the summit. To view more photos from the conference, visit our Pinterest page The JOHN STALKER INSTITUTE (JSI) Rocks.

2016 Healthy Kids, Healthy Programs Summit: Day One

Dr. Lori Coakley discusses ideas from participants during a breakout session

Dr. Lori Coakley discussed participant ideas during a breakout session

On May 24th school nutrition professionals from Massachusetts came together for the annual Healthy Kids, Healthy Programs Summit at Four Points by Sheraton, Norwood. This annual conference sponsored by the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and The John C. Stalker Institute of Food and Nutrition promotes healthy students and healthy school nutrition programs.

The conference kicked off with a welcome from Robert Leshin, MPA, Acting Director of the Office for Food and Nutrition Programs, Department of Elementary and Secondary Education and Karen McGrail, Med, RD, LDN, Director of the John C. Stalker Institute of Food and Nutrition.

Lori Coakley, PhD, Professor of Management, Bryant University, gave the morning keynote Leading Engagement: Transforming Your Human Capital One Employee at a Time where she discussed the ins and outs of employee engagement and gave tips on how to capitalize on employees’ potential. Later Dr. Coakley dove deeper into this topic in her morning and afternoon breakout sessions.

The lunch keynote, Leadership in the Kitchen: Moving Towards a Culture of Ongoing Learning, was given by two presenters from MassTERI who discussed work culture by first comparing it to a garden. They used the following analogy in their explanation…as a gardener (supervisor) you cannot give all your attention to just the plants (employees), you must also consider the ecosystem (culture) since the two affect each other. They continued, “In the kitchen, some things are out of your reach when it comes to affecting the culture.” They also provided several examples of things you CAN control that will positively impact the culture including: how you choose to present policy change, using effective communication, managing conflict by determining what the problem is, using adult learning techniques, and striving to accommodate a variety of learning styles when teaching employees.

Presenters from MassTERI discuss workplace culture and adult learning

Presenters from MassTERI discussed workplace culture and adult learning

Visit the 2016 Healthy Kids, Healthy Programs webpage for presentation files from the summit. To view more photos from the conference, visit our Pinterest page The JOHN STALKER INSTITUTE (JSI) Rocks.