Registered dietitian helps GV students make healthy choices


GVL / Aida Dennis

Zoë Murphy, Staff Writer

On  Feb. 1 the Laker Food Co. hosted a registered dietitian tabling event to inform students on the importance of proper nutrition and advocate for healthy eating. 

Throughout the day a registered dietitian was stationed at a table in the Blue Connection, one of the dining halls on GVSU’s campus, to help students learn about healthy ways to fuel themselves properly and on a budget. 

Alyssa Koopman, who conducted the event, is the one of the registered dietitians on The Laker Food Co. staff.

“Within my position, I conduct free one-on-one nutrition counseling, help students manage food allergies on campus, spread nutrition education and awareness, host tabling and other  programming events,” Koopman said.

Additionally, Koopman said she works with the culinary team to ensure that all students at GVSU have their dietary needs met. She helped to implement an allergen-friendly station called True Balance within campus dining. 

Koopman holds a degree in both Human Nutrition & Foods and Clinical Dietetics. She said registered dietitians are experts in nutrition that can work in various public or private practices such as health care, business, public health, education, research and government.  

“You must complete a bachelor’s degree in nutrition from an ACEND (Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics) approved or accredited dietetic program, complete an accredited supervised practice and pass the national registration examination,” Koopman said. 

Koopman earned one of her degrees from GVSU but is fairly new to her position with Laker Food Co., having begun in August 2022.  

Students can go to Koopman when they’re seeking information on where their food is coming from or how to build a healthy diet.  

“Whether they would like help with managing food allergies on campus, sports performance, meal planning or prepping, GI-related issues, etc. I can help,” Koopman said.  

 Koopman said the tabling event allowed her to answer questions for students and offer her expertise when needed. She said she wants to continue to spread the word about the importance and benefits of proper nutrition and to make herself available as much as she can. 

“Personally, the best benefit of being a RD on campus is cultivating relationships with students,” Koopman said. “Being able to connect, hear about their college experience and watch them flourish into their own person.”