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Marilyn and Melinda at Market

Faculty and Staff

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

Department Chair and Assistant Professor
Director, Master of Science in Nutrition program  

spetrosky@nova.edu
(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
iscripa@nova.edu
(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 new B.S. in Human Nutrition program, she is currently working on development and accreditation for the new undergraduate program to be launched Fall 2019. 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 puppy, June Bug.

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

Assistant Professor and Academic Coordinator
gordmari@nova.edu
(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. Most recently, she used her lifelong interest to develop a course on plant-based eating patterns. She 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.

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Nadine Mikati, Ph.D., RDN, LDN

Associate Professor
nmikati@nova.edu
(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 lead 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 foodservice, 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.

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

Assistant Professor
pcolindr@nova.edu
(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. She received her Master’s in Nutritional Sciences from the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center (OUHSC) with a focus in early childhood nutrition, finishing a dietetic internship through OU Medical Center as well as clinical lactation training through OUHSC. Over the last five years, Petra has seen infant and pediatric patients in a variety of settings and worked to increase community access for maternal-infant dyad support through telehealth, consults, and provider education. Petra values the importance of the first thousand days of an infant’s life (from conception to two years) to be the standard for future successful health outcomes. She enjoys working with the family unit, to get everyone working together to achieve well-being. 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

Adjunct Instructor and Practicum Coordinator
mluis@nova.edu
(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.

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

Adjunct Associate Professor and Functional Nutrition Liasion
dp43@nova.edu
(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. 

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

Adjunct Instructor
nutrition@nova.edu
(954) 262-1850

Arlene 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. Arlene completed her masters in Dietetics and Nutrition from Florida International University and undergraduate work in Food and Nutrition at the University of Alabama. Originally from Venezuela, she earned 2 gold medals at the Pan American Games and is a 3-time Olympic swimmer that loves running and paddle boarding. She will soon join the team as a nutrition specialist in pediatric feeding disorders. She is a Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist in the State of 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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