Gift from alumna to start master's program in nutrition

Hood College is proud to announce a gift from former Board of Trustees member Edith Howard Hogan ’59 to establish a new master’s program in nutrition. The $250,000 gift will be used to support faculty recruitment and development, academic programming, student and faculty research, and other expenses related to developing the program.

Mrs. Hogan graduated from Hood in 1959 with a bachelor’s degree in home economics and went on to earn her master’s in dietetics. “Hood prepared me very well, which made me competitive enough to pursue a graduate degree in Harvard’s graduate School of Public Health,” she said. “From there, I worked in Maryland on their statewide Dairy Council; later in adolescent nutrition counseling at Children’s Hospital in DC. I was appointed by President Reagan to serve in the USDA’s Agriculture Marketing Service.”

The Masters of Science in Nutrition will have three tracks, one in dietetics that will include practical work experience and intended to culminate in the registered dietician credential, which will benefit from the College’s strong ties to Frederick Regional Health System; the other two tracks, hospitality and sustainability will capitalize on Hood’s strengths in business and biology, respectively. 

“We live in an age of personalized nutrition, which requires diet and nutrition expertise in all stages of life. Several of the common causes of death are diet-related,” Mrs. Hogan said. According to a 2019 study published in JBNCI Cancer Spectrum, more than 5 percent of all new cancer cases since 2015 were linked to eating a poor diet. “Dieticians and nutritionists will continue to play a critical role in the health and wellness industry in the U.S.”

The program development is currently underway and expected to go through the required program review from the College’s graduate council and faculty senate, before going to the College’s accrediting body, Middle States Commission on Higher Education and the state’s Higher Education Commission. Pending all approvals, the program will launch in fall 2020. 

“We are grateful to Edith’s generosity. This gift will enable us to continue to provide advanced education in specialized areas in response to regional and global needs,” Hood College President Andrea E. Chapdelaine, Ph.D. said. 

“A degree in nutrition will contribute to the College’s mission,” Mrs. Hogan said. 

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