BASc, ’21

My name is Patricia. My family immigrated from the Philippines to Canada in 2003. Currently, I am a fourth year nutrition student at Ryerson University, pursuing a certificate in Aging and Gerontology. Fun fact: the first time I ever saw snow was when I moved to Canada

Prior to the pandemic, I provided meal assistance at a LTC home. I was taken aback by the lack of cultural meals served despite the cultural diversity of the residents. I wanted to ask the dietitian if they would consider providing more cultural meal options but due to my lack in confidence, I was unable to approach them. Because of who I am, I felt that my opinion did not matter. However, through volunteering at a LTC home and spending time with my grandparents, I was inspired to learn more about the aging population and motivated me to pursue this certificate.

After learning about the overall representation of BIPOC dietitians, I began to read books on the topic to educate myself about race, and its influence on the health and well-being of the BIPOC population. Reading alone is not enough and so, I am actively in search for opportunities to immerse myself and become an advocator for health hands-on. Working in retail last year allowed me to immerse myself in diversity and interact with consumers of various backgrounds. While volunteering at a LTC home showed me just how needed it is to consider diversity in health. I hope to be able to help pioneer a future where diversity being in the forefront of health becomes a standard.

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