The New Jersey Institute for Food, Nutrition, and Health (IFNH) hosted a capital campaign event, “RU Healthy?–Investing Today for a Healthier Tomorrow,” at the Rutgers Visitor Center on the Busch campus in Piscataway on October 22, 2012. The event provided the opportunity for Rutgers and external stakeholders to receive an update on the plans and progress of the IFNH. Founding Director of the IFNJ Peter Gillies, the Executive Dean of the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences Robert M. Goodman, and the Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Interim Chancellor, Rutgers–New Brunswick Richard Edwards spoke at the event. They stressed the importance of stakeholders in the success of the institute and moving the IFNH and its initiative ahead, strengthening its connection to the broader university community.
The event was highlighted by a number of interactive sessions, which included a 3-D model of the new building, a look at the healthcare teams of the future, and experiencing a preschool classroom that teaches youngsters healthy eating. Members of the IFNH research team were available throughout the event to discuss plans with attendees, who were also given a sneak preview of “Generations at Risk,” the Institute’s documentary that follows several families in New Jersey and their unfolding challenges with eating healthy and struggles with obesity. Rutgers’ award winning Chef, Sebastian Nieto, was on hand to conduct several demonstrations meant to highlight the nutrients in our food.
The mission of the institute is to make New Jersey known as the healthy state and serve as a model for the nation. Conceived in 2008 as the organizational hub for interdisciplinary research, teaching, and community engagement in nutrition and health at Rutgers, the institute unites faculty and staff from across the university to work on large, multidisciplinary projects of societal importance.