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Dr. Hernandez Wins USDA Grant to Prepare Students for Careers in Obesity and Nutrition

HHP faculty Dr. Daphne Hernandez has won a grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) to mentor and train undergraduate students for careers in obesity and nutrition. The $281,475 grant will cultivate and refine student skills needed to enter the food, nutrition, and agricultural science workforce through basic and applied research and experiential learning opportunities, along with the professional development and leadership opportunities. Dr. Hernandez is the principal investigator for the project, HHP faculty Dr. Craig Johnston and Ms. Claudia Scott are co-investigators on the project.

Daphne Hernandez
Dr. Daphne Hernandez

The project titled The "Houston-area Opportunities for Undergraduate Student Training in Obesity & Nutrition (HOUSTON) Academy" will provide fellowships to 48 undergraduate students, primarily underrepresented race/ethnic students and economically disadvantaged students in the Houston-area.

This grant is part of a $5 million effort through NIFA's Research and Extension Experiences for Undergraduate (REEU) Fellowships program, part of the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative's (AFRI) Education and Literacy Initiative to provide training for students to acquire laboratory research and extension skills, mentoring experiences, and participation in extension projects or programs that deliver science-based knowledge and informal educational programs.

Visit the Houston-area Opportunities for Undergraduate Student Training in Obesity & Nutrition (HOUSTON) Academy website.

About The National Institute of Food and Agriculture

The National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), a federal agency within the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), provides leadership and funding for programs that advance agriculture-related sciences. NIFA programs propel cutting-edge discoveries from research laboratories to farms, classrooms, communities, and back again. NIFA collaborates with leading scientists, policymakers, experts, and educators in organizations throughout the world to find innovative solutions to the most pressing local and global problems.


The Agriculture and Food Research Initiative's (AFRI) Food, Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Human Sciences Education and Literacy Initiative (ELI) targets talented, highly-motivated undergraduate, doctoral, and postdoctoral students that demonstrate remarkable promise and the potential to become exceptional education, extension, and research professionals in the United States.

Visit the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) website