The mission of the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University (HNRCA) is to promote healthy aging through nutrition science to empower people seeking to enjoy long, active, and independent lives. HNRCA investigators conduct the world's most advanced studies on nutrition and aging. The research focuses on determining the nutrient and physical activity requirements necessary to promote well-being for older adults. HNRCA scientists examine how nutrition and physical activity play a major role in the prevention of the major chronic degenerative conditions and diseases associated with aging.
The HNRCA’s human studies unit, the Metabolic Research Unit (MRU), is a scientific core that supports and facilitates the clinical aspects of data and biological sample collection from volunteer human subjects. Unit staff provide nursing, dietary, participant engagement, and study management services, as well as expertise and services in dietary data collection methods, coding, data cleaning and management, and dietary data analysis. All human research studies carried out in the MRU are reviewed and approved by the Tufts Medical Campus Institutional Review Board (IRB).
What You'll Do
The Senior Diet Technician will work within the metabolic research kitchen in the of the MRU under the supervision of the Research Dietician. S/he will be involved in multiple research protocols that involve the metabolic kitchen. This position assists with research meal preparation, quantity food production, standardization and testing of recipes, and maintaining the integrity of protocol-specific research diets. The Senior Diet Technician will assist with implementing and monitoring of research protocols and will provide necessary assistance related to the provided diet to research subjects to help with study adherence. Other essential functions will include following safety and quality assurance standards, participating in improving work flow, and assisting in training of other staff or student help.
- Food production and recipe development: support of quantity food production including assessment of food production needs; production sheet preparation; task assignments; testing and standardization of new recipes; conducting yield studies; assist with coordination of timely and accurate completion of tasks for the specific menus.
Assist in meal preparation and portioning of metabolic research diets. Must accurately weigh, mix and cook study menu ingredients as designed to ensure study diets specific to individual protocols, with the ability to ensure appropriate portions are served on an individual basis using weight scales and kitchen serving utensils.
- Assist with meal service: must serve meals either for in-house dining service or for take-out. Interact with research subjects to assist with menu selection and encourage adherence to protocols.
- Maintain records of food use, meal census and inventory. Quality assurance monitoring of non-resident meals and weighing back and documentation of returned foods for both non-resident and in-resident dining is a critical component of the position. Data entry into computer systems to track study provided foods/meals and study visit completion.
- Supervise use and maintenance of food preparation equipment and work space in accordance with Health and Safety Regulations.
- Assist with training of staff or student employees.
What We're Looking For
- Bachelor’s degree in nutrition or Diet Technician, Registered (DTR)
- 3-4 years’ experience in food service
- Experience with diet screening, diet education, and diet development
- Experience with computer systems, including web-based applications and some Microsoft Office applications
- Basic math skills and ability to convert measurements between English and metric units
- Strong verbal communication skills; interacts well with others
- ServSafe and CITI Human Subject Protection certification (can be earned on the job)
- Familiarity with NDSR and/or other nutrition assessment databases