Western Connecticut State University will offer a master’s degree in Human Nutrition in the fall, an expansion of the fast-growing Health Promotion & Exercise Sciences (HPX) program. The department currently hosts degrees in Health Promotion Studies and Health Education.
Dr. Ethan Balk, an HPX associate professor, is coordinating the graduate degree, which can serve students with a background in varying fields, including public and community health, psychology, education and other professions.
“If you are interested in working with people in a nutrition setting, whether it be a private practice, community health, or nutrition education, this degree will give you foundational knowledge and move you toward certification as a nutrition specialist,” Balk said. “Nutrition encompasses such a broad field. We work with people in a multitude of disease settings including obesity and the common chronic diseases, maternal and fetal nutrition, pediatric nutrition education, school settings, and more. This is one of the fastest growing fields out there; jobs are open in community settings like the YMCA, public and private schools, and hospitals and integrative health settings.”
Students will be able to finish the 38-credit program in two years if they enroll full-time. A part-time schedule will also be offered.
Balk, who joined WCSU in 2015, is also a clinical dietitian at the Yale Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Center at Yale New Haven Hospital.