Graduate Nutrition Club Provides Sense of Community for Hunter College Students

by Marissa Sheldon, MPH
Nutrition Club

Part of the Food Policy Community Spotlight Series

Name: Graduate Nutrition Club at Hunter College

What They Do: The Graduate Nutrition Club at Hunter College, established in 1920, comprises graduate students in the Hunter College nutrition program who collaborate to enhance their experience in the program and to benefit the greater Hunter community. The club disbanded during the COVID-19 pandemic but was reinstated by senior members in 2022. The executive board is working to maintain the original purpose of the club while focusing on the current needs and interests of students and the community. 

Based on their dietetic interests, extracurricular interests, and length of their academic program, incoming graduate students are matched with a mentor from the senior class. Mentors establish an ongoing relationship with their mentees throughout the school year and can provide guidance on academic and personal matters. 

Additionally, the graduate nutrition club partners with undergraduate nutrition clubs to give academic advice and provide useful connections within the Hunter community. 

During the holiday season, the club participates in a food drive to collect nonperishable food items to support hungry New Yorkers. 

In the spring semester, the club organizes a wellness fair featuring local vendors that is open to everyone on campus and is intended to raise awareness of issues related to health and wellness. 

The club has also partnered with the NYC Food Policy Center, participating in the Big Apple Crunch in October and promoting the recent Food As Medicine Summit

How They Do It: The executive board and social media manager lead the club’s meetings and activities. The board sends surveys to club members to determine what is important and how they could better serve them. The club as a whole advocates for upgrades and improvements geared towards student life, and they meet regularly with faculty and staff members to help achieve their goals.

While the club does not have a formal schedule, members generally meet at least monthly, either by attending a campus or local event together or with an in-person or virtual Zoom meeting. 

Mission: To allow graduate students in the nutrition program to collaborate in the pursuit of their passion and the promotion of nutrition and public health as a way to support their professional development and benefit the community.  

Latest project/campaign: The nutrition club is participating in a campus-wide food drive for  New York Common Pantry, a nonprofit emergency food provider with locations in East Harlem and the Bronx.  Donations of nonperishable, unopened, not expired goods will be collected from Monday, November 27, through Friday, December 8, in a bin outside the Social Work & Urban Public Health Library located at 2180 Third Avenue (at 119th Street).

Major Funding: Hunter College

Profit/nonprofit: N/A

Annual Budget: N/A

Interesting fact about how they are working to positively affect the food system: The wellness fair that the club has previously organized (and plans to run again in the spring) aims to get students and the entire campus community interested in and aware of their own personal health and of health-related organizations in the community.


Silberman School of Social Work Campus at Hunter College
2180 3rd Ave
New York, NY 10035

Core Programs: Graduate student club, mentorship program, food drive, wellness fair

Number of appointed members: 5 (President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Social Media Manager)

Number of general members: ~50

Areas served: Hunter College community

Year Started: 1920

Club President: Jessica Villalvir

Contact Information:, 


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