Worcester State students with residents of Reyes House

Spanish Students Teach Nutrition at the Hector Reyes House

April 3, 2018
By: Worcester State University News

Worcester State University students Jamie Cruz, Ruba Dabbagh, and Lizbelle Espinal hit the road with Assistant Professor of World Languages Antonio Guijarro-Donadiós, Ph.D., on Friday, March 30 to give a presentation about nutrition and dietetics issues for Spanish-speaking participants at the Hector Reyes House.

This visit was part of a project connected to the Provost Series Theme “Democracy and Diplomacy,” and the result of a collaboration between their class, Spanish for the Nutrition and Dietitian Professional, and the class Health and Nutrition taught by Assistant Professor of Health Sciences Mariana Calle, Ph.D. In addition, the students will present two posters at the annual Celebration of Scholarship and Creativity on Wednesday, April 18 from 3 to 5 p.m. in the Wellness Center.

The collaborative activities between the two classes included visits to the Reyes House. Students from Guijarro-Donadiós’ class presented culturally sensitive nutrition care of the Spanish-speaking patient, such as Latino culture, folk beliefs, lay healers, differences in dietary habits within the Latino community, establishing a counseling relationship, the Latino health profile, and effective communication. Calle brought her experience as a Spanish-speaking dietitian to provide examples of real-life clinic settings with Spanish-speaking situations.

Spanish for the Nutrition and Dietitian Professional is a brand new course within the new minor in Spanish for health professionals and focuses on language used in the medical professions as well as cultural situations that doctors, nutritionists, dietitians, nurses, public health workers, social workers, and other health professionals may experience.

By familiarizing students with conversational Spanish and medical Spanish, this course enables students to apply their learning to real-world situations, to assist in communications, and ultimately to break down the barrier between medical professionals and Spanish-speakers.

Submitted by Antonio Guijarro-Donadiós

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