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Faculty and Staff

Stephanie N. Petrosky, M.H.A., RDN, LDN, FAND

Department Chair and Assistant Professor
Director, Master of Science in Nutrition program
(954) 262-1597

Stephanie Petrosky has enjoyed a diverse and exciting career as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and loves to make nutrition fun. In addition to clinical practice in hospital and outpatient settings, she has held executive operations roles within national healthcare companies and senior living communities. She received her professional training from Florida International University and earned an M.S. in Health Services Administration from Capella University. Stephanie is completing an advanced practice doctorate in clinical nutrition at the University of North Florida. With 30 years of teaching experience, she has been active in many leadership roles. She is proud to be a past-president of the Florida Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and currently serves as the Chair of the Dietetics and Nutrition Practice Council for Florida, which oversees the licensure in Florida. On a personal note, Stephanie enjoys the beach, reading, long walks, learning new things, and mentoring others.

Scripa, Ioana

Ioana Scripa, Ph.D., RDN, LDN

Assistant Professor
Director, Bachelor of Science in Human Nutrition
(954) 262-1515

Ioana received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Dietetics and Nutrition from the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. As the Director of the B.S. in Human Nutrition program, she is responsible for program operations, accreditation, and faculty oversight and facilitating student success. She enjoys community-based projects, diabetes prevention, wellness, and nutrition education. She developed cooking sessions that were integrated into an existing life-skills program offered by the YWCA North Carolina for adolescent and young adult mothers. She has a passion for reading, cooking (especially fish), and spending time with her fur babies, June Bug and Tator Tot.

Marilyn Gordon, Ed.D., RDN, CSSD, LDN

Assistant Professor and Academic Coordinator
(954) 262-4376

Marilyn is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Board Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Her interest in nutrition grew out of vegetarianism and fitness. Early in clinical practice, she realized the power of food and lifestyle for optimal health. After graduate work in exercise science and wellness, she began teaching nutrition and wellness courses. She completed her doctoral studies in educational leadership at Florida International University. Most recently, she used her lifelong interest to develop a course on plant-based eating patterns. Dr. Gordon is the team nutritionist for the athletics department and teaches yoga and spin classes at the university’s recreation center, which is a great way to get to know students. She loves exploring the topics of Ayurveda, functional nutrition, and nutrigenomics as additional tools to enhance health.


Nadine Mikati, Ph.D., RDN, LDN

Associate Professor
(954) 262-1578

Nadine obtained her B.S. degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from the American University of Beirut with distinction. She then earned an M.S. degree in Nutrition and Food Science from Wayne State University. Her passion for learning led her to complete a Ph.D. degree in Nutrition and Dietetics from Florida International University where her research primarily focused on obesity prevention. She designed and implemented an after-school intervention for children aged 6-11 in order to promote healthy eating habits and physical activity. As a Registered Dietitian, she has various experience in food service, clinical and community nutrition and was named Registered Young Dietitian of the Year in 2009 by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Nadine has a passion for education and has been teaching for over 10 years. One of Nadine’s goals is to give back to the community by teaching every person how to lead a healthier lifestyle.


Petra Colindres, M.A., RDN, LDN, IBCLC

Assistant Professor and Certified Lactation Consultant
(954) 262-1596

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Lactation Consultant Petra Colindres is an International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) and licensed dietitian with a passion for pediatric nutrition. Colindres values the importance of the first thousand days of an infant’s life as the standard for future successful health outcomes. She received her Master’s in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (OUHSC) with a focus on early childhood nutrition, completing a dietetic internship there. Petra provides clinical services to adults, student athletes, and pediatric patients in a variety of settings. She enjoys consulting with the whole family unit to get everyone working together. Petra has been a local media spokesperson, enjoys public outreach, and promotes social media in sharing her passion for nutrition. As a mother and nutrition lifestyle expert, Petra believes a healthy lifestyle should include changes that are easy to fit into your life, food that tastes good, and moments that make you feel fulfilled.

Melinda Luis, M.S., RD, LDN

Assistant Professor and Practicum Coordinator
(954) 262-1429

Melinda earned her M.S. in Dietetics and Nutrition from Florida International University and is currently working on her Doctorate in Clinical Nutrition from the University of North Florida. Her early career involved clinical practice in hospital and extended care settings. Her graduate work emphasized eating and cognitive challenges in older adults. She enjoys exploring the nutritional patterns of culturally diverse populations worldwide and created a unique course at NSU on world culture, food, and nutrition. Her teaching experience ranges from cooking and nutrition skill classes for children to extensive work in higher education. For fun, Melinda enjoys family time, relaxing at the beach, and scrapbooking.

Amanpreet Cheema, Ph.D., M.S.

Assistant Professor
(954) 262-2871

Amanpreet Cheema is a research associate in the areas of integrative, immunological, and cardiovascular specialties. She currently serves as program director of research operations for the Gulf War Illness Clinical Coordinating Center and holds a faculty appointment as an assistant professor in the Dr. Kiran C. Patel College of Osteopathic Medicine. Cheema, a nutritional biochemist, earned both her Master of Science in Biochemistry and Doctor of Philosophy in Nutrition from Florida International University. She has several years of experience overseeing large, multisite, multi-study, highly complex research projects. Her current research interests focus on clinical studies for therapeutic targets tied to Gulf War illness and myalgic encephalomyelitis-associated molecular and physiological imbalances. She is the principal investigator of a Department of Defense Phase II study and a coinvestigator in other Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs.

Tobin Silver, Ph.D., CSCS

Associate Professor
(954) 262-8090

Dr. Silver earned his doctorate degree from Purdue University and a master’s degree from Barry University. He is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist by the National Strength and Conditioning Association and carries Level I Exercise is Medicine Credential of the American College of Sports Medicine in conjunction with Exercise is Medicine®. Dr. Silver’s research interests include nonlinear, linear, and temporal analyses of biological signals (human), trip recovery while walking, balance and posture, personal training, and community wellness. My interests are vast with the goal of providing hands-on learning experiences to our students within the University and throughout the community.

Denise Pickett-Bernard, Ph.D., RDN, LDN, IFMCP, IFNCP

Adjunct Associate Professor and Functional Nutrition Liasion
(954) 262-1597

Denise Pickett-Bernard brings a variety of education and experience to the team. Starting her career as a chef after graduating from the Culinary Institute of America, she went on to earn a B.S. in Food Service Management, an M.S. in Food Science and Human Nutrition. She earned a Ph.D. in Spirituality and Weight-loss Maintenance.  She is a Certified Practitioner with the Institute of Functional Medicine and has a private practice. While she has held academic and industry leadership positions, she really enjoys the opportunity to merge all of her passions in food, culinary practice, functional nutrition, and mind-body medicine when teaching others to use food as medicine to optimize human flourishing. 

Dynyce Boyce, M.S.MEd., RD, LDN

Adjunct Instructor
(954) 262- 1850

Dynyce Boyce is a registered dietitian and graduate of Nova Southeastern University‘s Master of Science in Medical Education program. She completed undergraduate studies in Nutrition and Dietetics at Florida International University and brings over a decade of experience in acute care, critical illness, trauma, wound healing, performance improvement, and community outreach. In addition to academia, she serves as a nutrition and quality improvement content expert, supporting physicians and allied health professionals at hospitals and clinical practices throughout Florida. Dynyce is devoted to equipping the next generation of leaders with the necessary tools to succeed and transform lives in an ever-evolving healthcare landscape.

Su-Nui Escobar, D.C.N., RDN, LDN, FAND

Adjunct Assistant Professor
(954) 262- 1850

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist Su-Nui Escobar earned a master’s degree in Dietetics and Nutrition from Florida International University and a doctorate in clinical nutrition from the University of North Florida. Her research dissertation explored mindful parenting around food. As a natural leader in her field, Dr. Escobar is the founder and director of a nutrition internship at Larkin Community Hospital. She is past president of the South Florida Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and was honored as the Greater South Florida Dietitian and the Outstanding Educator. Dr. Escobar is a media spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the national spokeswoman for several Hispanic programs. Her charisma and warmth have made her popular for Latino television appearances. Dr. Escobar's success can be attributed to her very personal way of offering real-life advice to maximize health.

Douglas S. Kalman Ph.D., RDN, FACN, FISSN

Adjunct Assistant Professor
(954) 262- 1850

Dr. Kalman graduated from Florida State University. He earned a master’s at Hunter College - City University of New York and a doctorate in exercise and nutritional biochemistry from Touro University International. Dr. Kalman co-founded The International Society of Sports Nutrition and remains actively involved in several professional organizations. Dr. Kalman brings extensive experience in the field of sports performance and research, including work with Olympic and professional athletes, musicians and musical companies, combat sports, and collegiate teams as well as numerous scholarly contributions. Impressively, Dr. Kalman has completed over 250 clinical trials and projects within the pharmaceutical, medical, exercise, and nutrition industries. He has taught at New York University, C.W. Post-Long Island University, Florida Atlantic University, and Florida International University and is an adjunct professor with Dr. Pallavi Patel College of Health Care Sciences.

Arlene Semeco, M.S., RDN, LDN, CISSN

Adjunct Instructor
(954) 262-1850

Arlene Semeco brings extensive experience in clinical nutrition, sports consulting, and rehabilitation services. She actively writes for nutrition websites and online resources and has developed nutritional supplements in research. She completed her master’s degree in dietetics and nutrition from Florida International University and her undergraduate work in food and nutrition at the University of Alabama. Originally from Venezuela, she earned two gold medals at the Pan American Games and is a three-time Olympic swimmer who loves running and paddleboarding. She supported NSU’s Feeding Disorders Clinic by providing intensive services to patients and families. Semeco is a licensed nutritionist in Florida, a registered dietitian by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and a certified sports nutritionist by the International Society of Sports Nutrition.

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