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USA research work experience scholarship now open to Nutrition students

Hope Nutrition students are invited to apply for a £2,500 scholarship that will see them spend three months working on a ground breaking $8.8million research programme in the USA.

Nutrition undergraduates from all years of study are invited to apply for the Purdue-Hope Scholarship, which will see two of them work alongside world-leading nutritionist Dr Connie Weaver on the Camp DASH human trial at Purdue University, Indiana, USA.

Camp DASH is a dietary intervention study to determine the effect of diet and sodium intake on blood pressure and blood lipids in adolescents ages 11-15 years.

The generous prize fund of £2,500 per student, supported by the Vice Chancellor’s Initiative Fund, provides funding for visa application fee and associated costs, travel expenses, appropriate training and subsistence.   

Dr Connie Weaver from Purdue University said: “Camp DASH offers an exceptional opportunity to train future clinical nutrition researchers. It is one of the few large clinical nutrition research studies being funded by NIH currently. The research team has conducted 11 previous controlled feeding studies in a summer research camp setting, and students from around the world have trained on these studies. 

“I am delighted to open up this opportunity to students from Liverpool Hope. This study has the potential to influence dietary guidance for children, specifically adolescents. It has been assumed that dietary patterns and sodium reduction that are effective at reducing blood pressure and blood lipids in adults will also be effective in children, but it has not been determined. Antecedents of cardiovascular disease start in childhood and track to adults.”  

The camp will have recreational and educational experiences for participants and will be held at Purdue University. They are expecting 150 children to participate in the study. The role also includes the opportunity to work with adolescent volunteers as a camp councillor, preparing food in the metabolic kitchen and/or processing and analysing biological samples in the laboratory.  

Dr Claire McDonald Clarke, who is co-ordinating the new partnership, said: “I worked at Purdue as a post doctoral researcher before coming to Liverpool Hope and it was such a great place to live and work. I'm fortunate to have had the opportunity to work with such talented researchers at Purdue and I'm so excited that some of our current students will have the opportunity to volunteer at Camp DASH this summer. 

“Thanks to the generous scholarship from the Vice Chancellor, Professor Pillay, and accommodation provided by Purdue University, we hope this will open the experience to all our Nutrition students, regardless of financial situation. I have no doubt this will be a life-changing experience for our students and will have a huge impact on their personal development and future career prospects. Dr Weaver and I are discussing plans for future research collaborations and hope this will be the start of a continuing relationship between Liverpool Hope and Purdue Universities.”

Closing date for applications: Friday 20th January 2017.

Published on 28/11/2018