New Student Notes

On behalf of the Grapevine Newsletter, we would like to extend a warm welcome to the Nutrition students who began their studies here in the Spring 2013 and Fall 2013 semesters. Some of these new students offered to share with us where they are from, what their nutrition interests are, and a few other fun facts about themselves. What an impressive group!

Elizabeth Gray Adler: From Oyster Bay, NY, Elizabeth went to Vanderbilt University and received a B.S. in Human and Organizational Development. For the past year and a half, she has worked for a medical oncologist who specializes in gastrointestinal cancers at the Clinical Genetics Service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.

Tyffanie Ammeter: From Rye, CO, Tyffanie attended the University of Colorado at Boulder to get her B.S. in Business Management with emphasis in Accounting. She is bilingual in Spanish and lived in Chile for over 4 years. Tyffanie was in Chile for the 8.8 earthquake in 2010, and it played a big part in motivating her to make the career change to nutrition and exercise.

Ian (Yi Han) Ang: From Singapore, Ian went to NYU for his undergraduate degree as a double major in Neural Science and Psychology. This year, Ian is a new doctoral student in the Nutrition program. He is not new to TC, however, as he has previously completed a Masters in Clinical Psychology from Teachers College.

Morgan Bookheimer: From Philadelphia, PA, Morgan went to Cornell University and studied Nutritional Science. She currently works for a medical non-profit and is interested in one day running her own non-profit organization in the field of nutrition and public health.

Sandeep Kaur Dhillon: From Los Angeles, CA, Sandeep has a B.A. in English Literature from UCLA. She had a brief stint in law school before withdrawing to become a yoga teacher and personal trainer. She decided to get a graduate degree in Nutrition and become a Registered Dietitian so she could educate on preventative as well as healing health care through nutrition and exercise.

Niharika Goenka: From Bombay, India, Niharika completed her undergraduate degree at Barnard College with a B.A. in History.

Matthew Graziose: From Huntington, NY,  Matthew has a B.S. in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Delaware. He also has an M.S. in Nutritional Sciences from The Pennsylvania State University. Matthew is a personal trainer, marathon runner and current teacher of the Food, Health and Choices fifth grade curriculum funded by the USDA.

Laura A. Guerra: From NYC, NY, Laura attended the University of Buffalo for her undergraduate degree in Economics. She also has a Masters in International Finance from the Thunderbird School of Management in Glendale, AZ. Laura is working with the Double Discovery Center to develop an after school program focused on nutrition.

Alix Kantowitz: From Englewood, NJ, Alix has an NYU B.S. degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. Alix completed the Dietetic Internship at NY Presbyterian Hospital and she attended Culinary School at Natural Gourmet Institute. After becoming an RD and going to culinary school, Alix started a company called Shovels and Spoons that teaches healthy, farm-to-table cooking to children and provides nutritional counseling.

Jessica Laifer: From Alpine, NJ, Jessica has a B.A. in History with a minor in Irish Studies from NYU. She is a licensed ZUMBA instructor, and she teaches donation-based ZUMBA classes for charitable causes in her spare time.

Katie Leonard: From New York, NY, Katie has a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of Georgia, and she hopes to use her background in the arts to create inspiring and engaging tools for nutrition education for children and families.

Deborah Olarte: From Oceanside, NY, Deborah has a B.M. in musical theater from The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C. After deciding that being a “starving actress” wasn’t for her, she went to work as a legal assistant/paralegal in a stressful NYC law firm. The stress took its toll on her body, which led her to yoga and proper nutrition. She became a certified yoga instructor and the writer/creator of In the future, Deborah plans to be an RD educating others to prevent disease through proper nutrition and exercise.

Rachel Paul: A doctoral student behavioral nutrition, Rachel hails from Philadelphia, PA. She has a B.S. in Nutrition, and an M.S. in Public Health Nutrition from Case Western Reserve University. Her future professional interests include academia and federal government—how social relationships affect food beliefs and behaviors and how policy can positively facilitate these relationships. Check out Rachel’s blog,

Jenna Kaufman-Ross: From Marlboro,NJ, Jenna has a degree in Spanish from University of Michigan. She would like to work with athletes in the future!

Miyuki Shimizu: Originally from Nasu, Japan, Miyuki has a B.S. in Public Health Nutrition and Dietetics from Kansas State University and an M.S. in Dietetics and Nutrition from University of Kansas Medical Center. She recently volunteered for a monthly street cleaning in the West Village, and would like to create sustainable and clean communities where everyone can enjoy their healthy and happy lives.

Laura Sienkiewicz: Laura grew up in Vestal, NY and went to SUNY Buffalo. Laura’s interests include creating healthy recipes and taking weekly guitar lessons. You might come across her singing and playing with her band, The Roman Empire, here in NYC. Laura also loves volunteering with her dog, Lulu, who is a certified therapy dog.

Lindsay Smith: From Austin, TX, Lindsay went to Boston University and Texas State University. She has a food and nutrition blog called The Functional Foodie:

Matthue Tompkins: Currently studying Nutrition Education, Matthue comes from Islip, Long Island. He completed his undergraduate coursework at the Culinary Institute of America, where he received a BPS degree in Baking and Pastry Arts Management. Matthue volunteers for Teachers College Community School (TCCS), assisting in after school nutrition classes. He also enjoys playing the cello in his spare time.


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