I am an HCPC-registered Dietitian and a Registered Public Health Nutritionist, with clinical and research experience in obesity management and in optimising nutrition of older people with dementia. She teaches various aspects of nutrition to students on several undergraduate and Master-level programmes.
After graduating with a BSc (Hons) in plant science from St Andrews University in 1982 I completed a PhD in plant science at the University of Wales in 1986. Several post doctoral research fellowships followed in the field of plant molecular biology (Edinburgh, Glasgow and Saskatchewan, Canada) and I ultimately worked on chromosome walking towards the site of a gene involved in the signal transduction pathway for blue light perception in Arabidopsis thaliana.
Although I enjoyed laboratory work, I was keen to develop a career with more contact with people, and, as I have always had a keen interest in food and nutrition, I trained in dietetics at Glasgow Caledonian University. I worked as a dietitian in Ayrshire in several acute and community posts until 2005.
I started teaching part time at GCU in 2001 and initially combined clinical posts with lecturing. I no longer have a clinical role and focus on my academic post and my role as Subject Lead for Nutrition and Dietetics in the Department of Life Sciences.
I also supervise a PhD student who is working on a project to determine student nurses’ attitudes towards provision of nutritional care of older people.
I teach many aspects of nutrition and dietetics on several programmes including BSc Human Nutrition and Dietetics, PgD Dietetics, MSc Clinical Nutrition and Health, MSc Diabetes Care Management, BSc Human Biology with Sociology and Psychology, BSc Food Bioscience.
I was recently shortlisted for a student-led teaching award for ‘Timely and effective feedback’
I’m the co-ordinator for the final year Honours projects for the BSc Human Nutrition and Dietetics and I’ve been working over the last few years to develop external links with dietitians, nutritionists and other health care workers to devise some very useful and relevant practical research and audit projects. This should help with employability of our students and also enables them to submit an abstract to a national conference.