Fresno State program educates both athletes and nutrition students

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A Fresno State program is giving nutrition students real-world experience while teaching student-athletes some vital skills.

"We have them come into the kitchen, we put together some simple menus," explains nutrition professor Lisa Herzig. "It's the really basic what we call cooking survival skills that help them to be proficient in the kitchen."

The peer-to-peer program "Bulldogs in the Kitchen" allows nutrition students to show student-athletes some essentials.

"They're able to take the skill they learned and turn around and teach other people because a big part of being a dietitian is that we need to be able to know how to communicate effectively," Herzig continued.

"To teach someone, even the nutritional benefits of each of the foods, having that opportunity to teach is what I find important," said senior nutrition student Liz Villasenor.

It also teaches athletes the kitchen basics and the importance of nutrition. These are skills that swimmer Claire Brooks said she needed to learn.

"I had watched my mom cook a lot, and I loved the idea of cooking," Brooks said. "But as soon as I got in an apartment and had to cook for myself, it was not as fun, and I was underprepared."

Now she's able to keep up a grueling practice schedule and adequately fuel her body.

"Buying my own groceries and meal prepping and working in practice schedules, it really helps, and it's fun to work with your teammates," said Brooks.

The program is offered in both the spring and fall semesters.
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