Dr.Rezzan Khan, Ph.D. Nutrition, USA, Consultant Nutritionist, Shifa International Hosp.Islamabad
ABOUT ME, MY FAMILY & MY HOME/CITY:
I was born in Istanbul and was brought up in Ankara (the capital of Turkey). I did my bachelor’s from Ankara moved to the USA for higher studies and did my MSc and Ph.D. there. I was a slim, skinny girl with no interest in food and always wanted to invent some kind of a pill to avoid wasting time and energy for eating. But here I am; a consultant Dietitian who never imagined that her life would revolve around food.
EDUCATION & QUALIFICATION:
Ph.D., Food & Nutrition from Kansas State University, Manhattan (USA), (1974 – 1976)
MSc, Food & Nutrition from Iowa State University, Ames (USA), (1970 – 1974)
Foreign Students English Diploma. Queens College, New York (USA), (1969 – 1970)
BSc (Honors), Agricultural Engineering. Ankara University, (Turkey), (1965 – 1969)
I was the head of the Nutrition Dept. of Food Technology, Gazi University. Ankara. Turkey from 1977 -1980.
I worked with Rural Development Foundation (NGO) in Pakistan providing national nutrition guidance and advocacy from 1985 onward.
I joined Shifa International Hospital in 1996 and currently working there as a Consultant Dietitian.
The President of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan conferred the shield to me for my valuable contributions in improving health care in Pakistan on February 26, 2014.
2006 AODA Conference, “To Your Health: Prevention, Wellness and Nutrition Intervention across the Lifespan” in Dublin, Ireland.
12-15 April 2006: International Nutrition and Dietetics Congress, Ankara Turkey. Presented Case Study of Nutritional Care in Intensive Care Units (ICU)
29-30, 2011: Attended ESPEN Life Long Learning (ILL) program in Critical Nutrition and Metabolism in Bangkok, Thailand. Earned certificate on” Nutritional Support in Intensive Care Patient”, “Nutrition Support in Renal Disease” and “Nutritional Support in the Pre-operative Period”
Enjoy what you are doing, practice humility by never thinking that you are the best, and always be unsatisfied with your mastery of the subject.
There is always room to develop further professionally and it is important to remember numerous people are waiting for your help.
Director MSc, Epidemiology And Biostatistics Programme
Associate Professor Depts. Of Community Health Sciences
And Medicine, Aga Khan University
MSc Home Economics (Majors In Foods And Nutrition)
Masters In Public Health (MPH)
Ph.D. In Human Nutrition (McGill, Canada)
Post Doc In Nutritional Epidemiology (McMaster, Canada)
She is an only child born in the home of two university professors. Her fondest childhood memories are of her school years at St. Joseph Convent School Quetta where she used to march at the beat of a set of drums every morning. Her father recently passed away so at home now it’s just her mother and her.
Third Position In Higher Secondary School Certificate, First Position In MPH
Canadian Commonwealth Scholarship For Doctoral Degree
Ph.D. From McGill University, One Of The Best Universities In The World! And Post Doc From McMaster
Research Work Showcased At Canadian Cardiovascular Society Meeting And Interview On Canadian TV And Local Newspaper (I Felt Like A Star That Day!)
She volunteered for 4 years at AKU and had the honor of working under Dr. Salma Badruddin’s supervision. She started her formal career as Faculty at Baqai Medical University and Faculty at Allama Iqbal Open University. She worked as a Dietitian at a Poly Clinic in Karachi for some time, wrote the Nutrition Page of a fashion magazine for some time. She serves as a reviewer for several research journals. Then she got Canadian Commonwealth Scholarship for the doctoral degree.
She was a very career and goal-oriented person since ever. Since grade 8th she wanted to make a career in Human Nutrition. She is thankful to God that has been blessed and has been able to achieve many milestones in her life including an academic career in human nutrition.
Her goal now is to contribute to the development of a nutrition education program.
Lessons Learned & Key message :
“Lot of work goes hand in hand with a lot of fun so stay focused, every minute counts! Don’t be discouraged by other people’s attitudes, prove your worth by your work!”
Masters in Nutrition in Home Economics 1964 Ph.D. Nutrition (USA) Consultant Nutritionist, Ex-Professor Nutrition at Community Health and Nutrition Dept.AKU Honorary Life President, PNDS
Ph.D. on Ford Foundation scholarship —- The University of Tennessee at Knoxville
Peace Scholarship for her efforts at creating an understanding of Islam and Pakistan by giving talks at various forums
Elected for the National Honor Society Omicron NU for being a straight-A student
Founding members of Pakistan Nutrition and Dietetic Society (PNDS)
Honorary Life President of PNDS
Asian Dietetic Award Winner 2018
Her professional life enabled her to travel to many places to attend conferences to present research papers or as an invited speaker.
As these trips were funded by the Donor agencies that funded the research such as the Harvard Institute of Development, organizers of the Conferences, and also by Aga Khan University they were much more fun to enjoy!
She started teaching at the College of Home Economics and in 1968 she went on a scholarship to the US for Ph.D.
The purpose of the scholarship was after coming back that she will start more specialized programs in Nutrition. Unfortunately, while she was doing her PhD, CHE was nationalized and when she came back in 1972, she found that she had been transferred to Urdu College for Women.
Then she got a job as a USAID Consultant. While she was working there, she met Dr. Camer Villani at some dinner who was the Dean of AKUH at that time and when he found out that she is a Ph.D. in Nutrition, he offered her to start teaching at nursing section currently and after the medical students. The very next day after the meeting with Dr. Villani, she received a call from a lady who told her that Dr has referred her so that she can start her private practice at home and she succeeded.
During her time at AKU, several CHE students came to her who worked on their master’s thesis and some of them suggested that there should be a nutrition society for the progression of this profession. She told one of them, Fatima Bharmal that if she could find 20 students then a nutrition society can be started. At that time Dr. Rubina Hakeem has also completed her Ph.D. in Nutrition and came back to CHE, together with Ms. Shabana Pervaiz, Nilofer Safdar, Ayesha Khan, Denise Puri, Shabnum Kassamali, Faiza Riaz, Sadia Zubair founded the nutrition society named PNDS in 2003.
From a small beginning, PNDS has grown up so much and is now recognized at the International level being at ICDA as a representative society of Pakistan.
She mentioned “Thanks to Dr. Camar Villani’s vision that I was appointed as a faculty in a medical college and got the freedom to work with a curriculum committee to make nutrition part of the medical curriculum. Dr. Villani once said to her “I have appointed you and it’s up to you to make a place of nutrition in medical curriculum and even though you are in a department of medicine, feel free to work with anyone in other departments who are interested in nutrition so as a result, she did several research projects with the department of medicine, pediatrics surgery, and gynae.
Adelaide – Australia
My first international trip was to Korea
Most memorable place -Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia
Human Social Worker at PNS Shifa Hospital, Karachi Since-2004
Member of PANAP Committee( Program for Accreditation of Nutritional activities in Pakistan) 2008-2010
Regular Lifetime member, PNDS since 2003
A self-motivated and driven individual who strives to get things right first. Her passion, creativity, and attention to her profession are matched by thoughtfulness, depth, and rigorous introspection. She has progressed from being a confident person to a sparkling and influential one. Currently serving as a Head of Nutrition & Dietetics dept. at The Kidney Centre Post Graduate Training Institute in Karachi, Associated with PNDS (Pakistan Nutrition & Dietetic Society) for the past 11 years and currently serving as President & Chair PR Committee of the society. Represented Pakistan in various regions including ICDA Congress 2016 in Granada, Spain, Asian Congress of Dietetics at Taipei, Taiwan (2016), Thailand (2009), and at MDA-AODA 2016 Conference in Malaysia
Received Dr. Ching Hwa Chui, Asian Out Standing Young Dietitian Award 2018 by AFDA at 7th ACD, Hongkong 2018
Plan, organized, and executed two Nutrition Relief Camps in drought-affected areas of the Tharparkar Region of Sind,2014-2015
Launched three PNDS Chapters with her team within 4 years of tenure of Presidentship.
Initially joined as a trainee and then became H.O.D of Nutrition Dept. of The Kidney Centre PGTI over the years of consistent efforts and hard work.
After completing her Masters in Nutrition, she did three months of initial training at the Kidney Centre PGTI under the supervision of Dr. Nilofer F. Safdar. Then, she joined Quality Assurance Department at Cupola group of companies/KFC. After working there for a few months, she rejoined the field of Clinical nutrition and started working at Sindh Institute of Urology and Transplantation(SIUT) where she got a chance to be part of a nutrition research project along with she was also getting experience in clinical nutrition. In 2004, she completed a three months course of Psychosocial counseling skills at PNS Shifa Naval hospital and became a Human Social Worker (HSW). In 2004, she joined the Kidney Centre PGTI again as a Clinical Dietitian and now she is the head of the Nutrition department where she provides dietary guidance/diet consultation for adults and pediatric patients; with different conditions and diseases e.g. Kidney diseases, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, etc. She also has a keen interest in nutrition research & has been involved in various research projects during her educational & professional experience. She also represented Pakistan at various national and international nutrition and dietetic forums and conferences.
JOURNEY WITH PNDS
She joined Pakistan Nutrition and Dietetic Society (PNDS) in 2003 as a volunteer member. She got elected as part of the Executive Committee in 2005. She has been committed to PNDS, appointed as Joint Sect. in 2007-2009, as Vice President from 2009-2013, and President, PNDS from 2013-2017. She worked for the membership & Accreditation Committee of PNDS and is now as Chair Public Relations/National and International Liaison Committee, PNDS. Apart from her regular professional duties, she is actively engaged in public nutrition education through programs on various TV channels and other public/professional forums. She also participates in philanthropic and social welfare activities of the underprivileged strata of society.
Visited Thailand, Taiwan, Malaysia, Singapore, UAE, KSA, Spain, Italy, Rome
FAVORITE QUOTE/ INSPIRATION IN LIFE:
She believes that firm belief in one own self & consistent wholehearted efforts made in any direction definitely reward one.
There is no shortcut to success; one has to take the stairs.
There are no secrets to success. It is the result of hard work, preparation, and learning from failure.
KEY MESSAGE FOR THE AUDIENCE IN HER OWN WORDS:
“It’s always good to get the knowledge, but the real deal is when you put things into practice, and trust me that is where the real learning lies. Open yourself up to new experiences and that’ll make you an all-new person and yes, always do what you love otherwise you will never be able to give your best.”
“No matter what field you are, what job you are doing, what work you have; continuous improvement is critical. Never settle after just getting the degree, keep improving yourself. Because no matter how much you learn, there will always be something new for you. So keep those inner fires kindling.”
Lt. Cdr. Rabia Anwer, MSc.Nutrition, RDN, Dietitian, Pakistan Navy
She was born in Quetta. She did her O- Levels from St Joseph Convent High School Quetta with nutrition as one of the subjects in higher classes. She always wanted to study textile designing at the National College of Arts but found Nutrition more interesting after joining R.L.A.K College of Home Economics. Her childhood was a wonderful period spent in the relaxed and protected environment provided by her parents. She is the eldest in her family and very thankful to her parents especially her father who sends her all the way to Karachi from Quetta to pursue her career. Her parents gave her the confidence to participate and excel in academics and co-curricular activities.
She was known for her intelligent personality. She is very lucky and blessed to have a husband who has supported and encouraged her to pursue my professional ambitions. Her family has played a vital role in my success and achievements.
EDUCATION & QUALIFICATION:
MSC (Home Economics) in 1995.
MSPH Program in Jinnah Sind Medical University(In progress)
Selected as a Commissioned officer at Pakistan Navy as Dietitian in 1997. She is among the pioneers’ Lady Officers of the Pakistan Navy.
Given Tamga-e-Imtiaz Military in 2016
ONE YEAR ONLINE CERTIFICATE COURSE ON CBT (Cognitive behavior therapy) from Oxford University London 2011.
Represented PNDS in the 6th ACD organized by AFDA in Taipei Taiwan in 2014.
• Professional affiliation with several educational and medical institutions.
“Invited Speaker in the International Conference on Malnutrition in Asia-The Peril Persists” at BZU Multan.
Presented oral paper on Association between Obesity and Low Serum Vitamin D Concentrations in Healthy Adult females: A Public Health Perspective in MDA-AODA Conference held in 26th -28th May 2016 in Kuala Lumpur Malaysia.
PROFESSOR ®, FORMER HOD OF NUTRITION DEPARTMENT. CHE LAHORE
MSC (Home Economics) in 1976.
Diploma in Hospital Dietetics from Allama Iqbal Open University (AIOU) in 1996.
Residency program in Clinical Nutrition (accredited by Joint Commission on Accreditation of Health Care Organizations) from USA in 2000.
Graduate Course in Nutrition Counseling & Education Methods from Iowa State University (ISU) in 2003.
ABOUT ME, MY FAMILY & MY HOME/CITY:
She was born in Lahore. She did her schooling at Sacred Heart and Convent of Jesus & Mary in Lahore and St. Mary High School Multan and her college was College of Home Economics Lahore.
Her childhood was a wonderful period spent in the relaxed and protected environment provided by her parents. She was known for my cheerful personality and uncontrollable giggles.
Her parents gave her the confidence to participate and excel in academics and co-curricular activities. Teaching has been her passion and her story revolves around her profession as a teacher. She is very lucky and blessed to have a husband who has supported and encouraged her to pursue her professional ambitions. Her children have played an instrumental part in helping her to overcome the challenges posed by the latest trends in Information and Communication Technology (ICT). Her family has played a vital role in my success and achievements. She loves to spend time with my family and especially the grandchildren
LAUNCHING OF THE LAHORE CHAPTER OF PNDS AND MY APPOINTMENT AS IT’S IN CHARGE
She started her career as a lecturer. Later, she was also appointed as Director of Post Graduate Diploma in Dietetics (PGDD) CHE collaboration with IOWA State University in 2006. She retired as a Head of Department (HOD) and presently She is a visiting professor at the University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences(UVAS), Lahore.
In her career, she found working as a research supervisor a very challenging job and she has really enjoyed it. Research projects thesis and case studies have enhanced her vision and reinforced her belief that teachers and students are partners in learning.
My biggest achievement in life is the success of my students who are already placed at important positions in Pakistan and all over the world.
My Children Are My Pride, Not Only Because Of Their Academic Excellence But Also Because Of The Value Of Hard Work And Honesty Deep-Rooted In Them.
Attended several conferences in the US.
Two-day program for improvement of university instruction through Center for Teaching Excellence.
National Research Initiative Regional Research Conference “Linking Agriculture, Food Systems, Communities, and Population Health“
The seminar offered by ISU Dietetics Programs for preceptors on working with dietetic interns
Organized and participated in various conferences all over Pakistan.
Professional affiliation with several educational and medical institutions
Every time she has traveled to any part of the world she has always desired that teaching as a profession should be given the same respect as in other parts of the world. She is fortunate that her commitment and dedication to her work have been rewarded with respect and trust from her students.
Traveled to many places in Asia, Europe, Far East, and the Middle East, USA.
Favorite area: Northern areas of Pakistan as they are just as beautiful as Switzerland! They belong to us.
GOALS & AMBITIONS:
The mission of my teaching has always been “ Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education” (Martin Luther King)
All my learning has been with an aim to enhance my knowledge as a teacher. Completing the graduate course from ISU in Nutrition Counseling & Education Methods successfully (GPA 4) was an important step towards this goal.
FAVORITE QUOTE/ INSPIRATION IN LIFE:
Success on any major scale requires you to accept responsibility. In the final analysis; one quality that all successful people have is the ability to take on responsibility”
LESSONS LEARNED & KEY MESSAGE FOR AUDIENCE!
The loss of two brothers at a very young age has been the biggest setback in my life. Bouncing back is hard but it is essential to remain steadfast and focused and come out stronger ahead.
The message to all especially younger members of PNDS is that “Be honest to your profession”. “Age is no barrier to learning-learning never ends”.
MSc. Nutrition, RDN.
Senior Lecturer Nutrition, School Of Public Health, Dow University Of Health Sciences
General Secretary – Pakistan Nutrition & Dietetic Society(2017-2019)
Ms. Nida Jawed is a Senior Lecturer and program coordinator for the BS and MSPH- Nutritional Science program at the School of Public Health, Dow University of Health Sciences. Throughout her education career she had a strong passion for nutritional sciences therefore even during her schooling she opted to choose food and nutrition along with other science courses. Ms. Jawed has Masters’s degree in Home Economics with majors in food and nutrition. Subsequent to her graduation she has worked in various health care organizations in a clinical setting.
These included the Kidney Centre-PGI, Tabba Heart Institute, Liaquat National Hospital, and counseling at a private diabetes clinic. After working in a clinical setting she thought she needed to move further and grow in her field, which is why she joined academia. Getting to work in a public sector university provided her with greater opportunities for exploring the best of her capabilities. Although her role as public health nutrition professional was very challenging and enduring in her first year of academia, however she was fully determined to further enhance her knowledge and continue in her endeavor to the best of her ability.
She has been a member of the Pakistan Nutrition and Dietetic Society since 2004 and was awarded the first youngest PNDS member award. She is currently the joint secretary and co-opts member for the scientific and registration committee for 2013-2015. She presented a research poster on “Diabetes Self-Management Practices and Gender Differences in Diet of People with Diabetes on Oral Hypoglycemic Agent and Insulin” at the Nutrition Research Symposium in 2013, organized by the Pakistan Nutrition & Dietetic Society. She got her first international publication on ‘Nutritional and lifestyle risk behaviors and their association with mental health and violence among Pakistani adolescents: results from a national survey of 4570 individuals in Bio Med Central- public health in March 2015 after continuous hard work and team support.
Being a quick and active learner Ms. Jawed has always looked out for opportunities to further improve her skills and gain more knowledge in her area of interest. She was also recently selected as one of 20 participants from Pakistan to represent at the 4-day workshop on “Nutrition Policy to Practice in Pakistan: Exploring the Challenges and Research Opportunities’, a British Council-funded Researcher Links Workshop in Islamabad from 8-11 March 2015.
Also currently she is working as a group member for a Higher Education Commission (HEC) grant proposal with the experts of the field as principal investigators to mentor her. Her peers have been impressed by her efficiency, responsibility, dedication, and professionalism towards her work. She believes her passion and success in the nutrition field, was derived from her parent’s support that kept her motivated throughout her career. Nida likes to volunteer for various opportunities to learn and gain new experiences.
She stresses that the best way to ‘stand out is by doing work with dedication and sincerity. Without a doubt, she believes hard work and the desire to excel are what get you off to a great start. She believes “what you are doesn’t really matter but it’s what you do that creates the aura around you for which you’ll be accounted and remembered for”.
M.SC., (PAK), MS., PHD, (USA), RDN. PROGRAM DIRECTOR, NUTRITIONAL SCIENCES, SCHOOL OF PUBLIC HEALTH, DOW UNIVERSITY OF HEALTH SCIENCES, KARACHI
Dr. Nilofer Safdar’s work exemplifies the qualities of dietitians. She strongly believes in the power of education as she quotes “The educated differ from the uneducated as much as the living from the dead” (Aristotle)
After completing her Master she continued her career on her return in 1982. She started working at Aga Khan University Hospital (AKU) as a senior clinical dietician. The University was in the formative stage, building the foundation of an organization that would ultimately manage a 654-bed hospital. She was one of the eight original members of the hospital commissioning team, charged with the primary responsibility to coordinate, plan and execute one of the first Nutrition and Foodservice departments in a Pakistani hospital. She took this as an opportunity to prove and convince me how this discipline would contribute and accelerate patient recovery. Gradually, other hospitals in Pakistan started to follow and the importance of nutrition in therapeutic medicine started to gain importance. The number of practicing nutritionists and dietitians slowly increased.
Having experience of over 30 years, Dr. Safdar’s greatest strength lies in her passion for the nutrition discipline, therefore in 2012, she decided to pursue her Ph.D. studies in spite of her age and family responsibilities. On her return in 2013, she decided to work in academia and particularly in the public sector and was able to convince Dow University of Health Sciences to initiate both the undergraduate and graduate degree programs in Nutritional Sciences.
Her academics in nutrition include a Doctorate degree in Public Health Nutrition from the University of Massachusetts, USA, & a Master’s degree in clinical nutrition from the City University of New York, USA. She also has acquired professional training in International Nutrition from Cornell University, NY.
In 2003, she along with a small group of dedicated nutritionists and related health professionals formed a society called Pakistan Nutrition & Dietetic Society (PNDS). Dr. Safdar is not only one of the founding members but also a two-time president of this society.
Currently, she is an assistant professor & program director- Nutrition, School of Public Health, Dow University of Health Sciences. She is still working very hard to sensitize policymakers, private sector partners, medical professionals, and the public at large to convince on the importance of nutrition in health education both from a curative and preventive health viewpoint. She also represents Pakistan in the Asian Federation of Dietetic Association, UK Nutrition Society, and American Society of Nutrition & Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics. Her interests are both in academia and clinical nutrition.
Her ground-breaking success in expanding the Foods and Nutrition programs will have a positive impact on dietitians in the field of dietetics. Never satisfied with the status quo, Dr. Nilofer is always thinking to pursue the future of dietitians. Dr. Nilofer has maintained a friendly, positive, professional attitude even in the face of most trying circumstances. She is passionate about dietetics, an outspoken visionary, and has an engaging sense of humor. Dr. Safdar is glad to have chosen a career in dietetics. She has been enriched by her role in the advancement of nutrition and dietetics while increasing the scope and visibility of dietitians in leadership.
How to become a Registered Dietitian / Nutritionist?
With the growing public interest in food and nutrition and its role in preventing and managing chronic diseases and obesity, the demand for Dietitians and Nutritionists is expected to increase. PNDS Registered Dietitian/Nutritionists are qualified food and nutrition experts who have met specific criteria to earn RDN credentials.