Rebecca McCullough, R.D.

Rebecca has enhanced foodservice by supporting the company at new account openings and mentoring a number of employees.

Why Selected?

According to Jenny Overly, director of nutrition, health & wellness, innovations at Unidine, Rebecca has enhanced foodservice by:

  • Working with residents to create and test calorie-dense smoothies to replace commercial nutritional supplements
  • Supporting the company at new account openings and mentoring a number of employees
  • Becoming one of three certified trainers for the MyUSuite menu management and nutrition system

Details

Director of Nutrition, Health & Wellness, Senior Culinary Group (Unidine), Boston, MA
Age: 26
Education: B.S. in dietetics from Central Arkansas University
Years at organization: 3

Get to know

Q. What has been your proudest accomplishment?

My role in the corporatewide rollout of Unidine’s signature program, Fresh Benefits, which I worked on closely with our corporate team for the past three years. Fresh Benefits allows patients and residents to receive extra calories and protein to meet nutritional needs without relying on commercial supplements. All the menu items are prepared fresh in house using natural foods that are enhanced with calorically dense ingredients and protein. It truly showcases how clinical and culinary integration enhances quality of life and dignity within our healthcare and senior living communities.

Q. What's the best career advice you've been given?

Be yourself, work hard and remember to always have fun with whatever you pursue.

Q. What's been the biggest challenge you've had to overcome?

The biggest challenge, being so involved in both the clinical and social aspect of long-term care, is getting attached to residents.

Q. What's been your most rewarding moment?

When I was based at one of our accounts as the clinical nutrition manager and our team created enriched smoothies to replace commercial supplements. One of our residents on a tube feed wasn’t consuming enough nutrients and calories orally and she refused to drink the commercial supplements when we tried to wean her off the tube. We started her on enriched smoothies and eventually got her weaned. Her husband came every afternoon to sit with her while she drank the smoothies and wrote me a personal thank-you letter saying how my ability to think outside the box truly enhanced her nutrition and showcased how much I truly cared.

Q. What would you like to accomplish in your career in the next two years?

I would like to become more involved with dietetic internships and Unidine partnerships.   

Q. What's been your funniest on-the-job disaster?

I was walking through the airport to my gate, wondering why so many people were looking at me strangely, until I boarded the plane and realized I still had my hairnet on. 

Under 30

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
food snap

We started a 50-member vegan team in response to students expressing the need for more vegan options. Between our monthly meetings, students are asked to take photos of foods they eat in and out of the dining halls to give us a true picture of the kinds of things they like and the kinds of foods that cause disappointment. This exercise has sparked a lot of conversation and given us more insight into what we could do better.

Ideas and Innovation
hybrid worker

Some of our employees can work four 10-hour days. It’s really helped with balance. We’ve also created a lot of hybrid positions, such as a personal services assistant and foodservice worker role. It allows workers to pick up more shifts and cover both positions.

Ideas and Innovation
cheeseburger

We set up an interactive collaboration with our dietetics department where students worked with our culinary team to test how recipes are imagined and produced. One of the recipes they came up with was a barbecue tempeh sandwich, which they believed was a great option for vegan students across campus. We added the sandwich to our On the Go program and then expanded it to our vegan station on campus due to its success.

Ideas and Innovation
salad bowl

We have reorganized our salad bars to not only include the traditional DIY salad ingredients, but also several daily entree salads. Our students requested 32-ounce heavy glass salad bowls that have been wildly popular. The big bowls allow students to load up on their favorite salads and customize with additional ingredients from around the servery. We have seen a significant surge in usage that cuts across all groups, including athletes.

FSD Resources