CAFP Ryerson

CAFP Ryerson is part of a national association that provides opportunities for professionals and students to network, mentor and develop in the foodservice field.

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Event Recap: CAFP Networking Event

Last Thursday night Ryerson University’s student branch of the Canadian Association of Foodservice Professionals (CAFP) hosted a networking event and their last event of the year. Several Registered Dietitians were there as well as professionals from the food service industry. The event gave the students the opportunity to network with four professionals, some of which were recruiting students for the summer. The format of the event was very casual where students and speakers could converse around the room while enjoying food and drinks. Students had the opportunity to engage with the speakers in small groups and find out more about their journeys and job opportunities in the field. In terms of building a career, Registered Dietitian Anisha Mahajan advised, “It is important to find out what inspires you and then proceed by pursuing that path.”

Attendees thought that the event was a well-organized networking opportunity that allowed for small group interactions and one-on-one conversations. The event was also sponsored by Greenhouse Juice Co. and Dufflet Pastries, who provided treats for students.

Overall the night was a successful way to wrap up the year. It was an amazing opportunity for student to network with professionals who were actively recruiting employees for their companies. Students had the opportunity to use the networking skills that they have been developing all year in order to make connections with industry professionals. The attendees made many great contacts and learned a bit more about various career paths, not only in dietetics.


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Recap: Dietitian’s Day

Last Thursday night Ryerson University’s student branch of the Canadian Association of Foodservice Professionals (CAFP) and Ryerson’s Nutrition Course Union hosted a networking event with a variety of Registered Dietitians in the GTA. The event gave the student the opportunity to network with nine dietitians who visited each table in order to answer questions and get to know the students better in an intimate setting. 
The nine speakers briefly described their journeys to get where they are today. All from very diverse backgrounds including food security, research, private practice and media. They also offered helpful advice to students and reassurance about the future. “Don’t be afraid to dream big,” said Linda McCharles, RD. After addressing the group, the speakers sat down with students for a more intimate, round-table discussion. Students had the opportunity to engage with the speakers one-on-one and find out more about their journeys, job opportunities in the field and specifics about each career path.
Charles Ko, event organizer, said “The setup was great, it allowed for students to get to know the dietitians and the dietitians had a lot of fun.” Karmen Young, event attendee said: “I thought the event was insightful, even at this time when a lot of us graduating students may be focusing on internship/masters applications.” Likewise, Aseel Masri, event attendee, said, “I loved hearing all of the different pathways you can take once a dietitian! It made me feel there was something for everyone and it changed my perspective on some career paths.”
Overall the night was a success and many great contacts were made. Students gained a better understanding of the wide variety of opportunities that are available to them. Students heard that staying true to their gut instincts and genuine interests would help them on the path to their dream job. Their dream job may not be the first job they receive but there is always opportunity to learn new skills that can be applied later. It was a great opportunity for students to discover the wide range of jobs that are out there for Ryerson’s future dietitians.

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Meet JoAnne Arcand

1. How did you end up in your chosen occupation?

After conducting many years of graduate and postdoctoral training, I knew that I was well suited to academia based on my interests and strengths in teaching and research. Positions in academia don’t come up very often, and one became available as I was finishing my postdoctoral fellowship. I applied and was successful. That was two years ago. My research expertise is in the clinical and public health aspects of nutrition and cardiovascular disease. When I was an undergraduate I worked as a research assistant in a cardiac rehab program. Because of this experience, I was assigned an internship research project in cardiology. My internship research project eventually expanded into a Master thesis, which then informed my PhD program that focused on nutrition in patients with chronic heart failure. Never underestimate how your early experiences can influence your future career!

2. Was that always the occupation you wanted to end up in?

Prior to my internship I wanted to be a clinical dietitian who worked with GI patients. I also loved cardiovascular research based on my summer work experiences as a Research Assistant at the University of Ottawa Heart Institute. During internship this changed and I developed a great interest in critical care nutrition. After my internship I was fortunate to obtain a position in the ICU, which I stayed in for 3 years.

3. Is there anything else you would like our readers to know about you or your path to your current occupation?

Working in academia as a tenure-track Assistant Professor is demanding in both time and effort required; but it’s also very rewarding to watch one’s students excel or to see uptake of one’s research in clinical practice or policy. I also have opportunities to travel and collaborate with colleagues across the country and internationally, and the freedom to be creative and test interesting and important research questions. I did not expect to work in academia (far from it!). However, I had an open mind; was in tune with my strengths and interests; worked very hard; was persistent, creative, and innovative; and had excellent mentors who identified my potential and provided me with opportunities to succeed.

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Meet Michelle Jaelin

1. How did you end up in your chosen occupation?
“I became interested in food and health sometime during my first degree in Visual Arts. I landed a job as the Nutrition Team Leader at Health Education and Promotion in my last year at York University. That same year, I was inspired by the photojournalism book Hungry Planet: What the World Eats by Peter Menzel and Faith D’Aluisio. Using my photography skills, I took my own photographs and used them in an exhibition for a nutrition wellness event called What Students Eat. Inspired by the buzz and dialogue generated from these photos on food and nutrition, I decided to pursue my passion to become a registered dietitian.”
2. Was that always the occupation you wanted to end up in
“Not at all. Growing up I initially wanted to be a fashion designer or a chef. Then I wanted to be teacher. I guess I was always drawn to creative fields!”
3. Is there anything else you would like our readers to know about you or your path to your current occupation?
“The path to pursue any dream is full of obstacles, roadblocks and failure that try to lead us down different directions – just like mine. But if you stay positive, focused and work hard on your ultimate goal, you will achieve it!”
Hear more from Michelle Jaelin at Dietitian’s Day next Thursday in the SCC. Register on ConnectRU:

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Recap: Dietitian’s of Canada Business and Industry Network

Last Thursday night was the first event of the year for Ryerson University’s student branch of the Canadian Association of Foodservice Professionals (CAFP). The student group partnered with Dietitian’s of Canada for a night of networking. The event provided students a chance to learn from six women who have made their mark in the food industry.  Continue reading

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Meet Susan Owens

“The current position at Campbell’s Foodservice was a new venture for me about 10 years ago. Prior to Campbell’s my work had been in food service operations in both hospitals and long term care/retirement sector as well as clinical nutrition.  Initially the position was a sales role managing the healthcare team as well as national healthcare accounts, and then progressed about 6 years ago to Marketing… My goal was always to do some type of role as dietitian working in business and industry. My recommendation to dietitians beginning their career is to be open minded to the wide diversity of opportunities that are out there in this field, and to follow your passion. Initially, my main interest was in clinical nutrition both in university and internship. Over the years, I shifted my focus more to administrative and consulting types of work, and ultimately to business and industry, but all of these experiences helped to build the opportunities that I have today.”

Susan Owens is Brand Manager on the Campbell’s Foodservice team responsible for brand management of healthcare related product categories and leads the national healthcare strategy. She joined Campbell’s in 2007 as a Business Development Manager, Healthcare. As a Registered Dietitian, she brings over 25 years of varied experience to this role within healthcare operations and clinical nutrition in both the senior living and acute care sectors. She has been an active member of various dietetic committees including the Dietitians of Canada Long term care Action group. Susan holds a Bachelor of Applied Science in Human Nutrition from the University of Guelph and dietetic internship from North York General Hospital.

If you would like to hear more from Susan and get a chance to network with her in person come to our Dietitians of Canada Business and Industry Network ONLY 2 DAYS AWAY on September 22, 2016 in TRS, Cara Commons. Please RSVP at