The Skill-it Kitchen project was born through passionate students, engagement with community groups active in the area and the perception that the medical curriculum did not support students to provide nutrition care. The nutrition curriculum at Deakin University medical school is limited, reflecting the state in most Australia universities. It includes three nutrition lectures delivered during our Cardio-respiratory block, discussions in a number of Problem Based Learning cases and two lectures delivered in our Public Health stream.
Skill-it Kitchen is a 6-month-old student- run student kitchen that was conceived to supplement our nutrition education. Skill-it has the lofty ambitions of “educating current students, future health-care professionals, to create a healthier future through food”. The particular focus areas of Skill-it are: Devolving practical and healthy cooking skills in students.
- Create a collaborative community of health care students, including nursing, medicine, medical imaging, optometry and other allied health students
- Train future health care works who are clinically competent in providing lifestyle counselling. – Educate students about the interplay between food, the environment and health
To achieve these ambitions, we have established the facilities to cook with 18-21 students in our portable kitchen, fit out with induction cooktops, and basic kitchen implements. The initial kitchens sessions have been successful, gaining the approval of students, medical school faculty and the student association staff in attendance. During these COVID-19 affected times where no face to face kitchens can run, the Skill-it team is busy working developing our base 6-week curriculum with input from local researchers, the medical school, and the Australian Medical Students Association (AMSA) Healthy Communities project, a national student advocacy project that aims to address our obesogenic surroundings.
We believe that nutrition education is a global issue and welcome international partnership with organisations like Nutritank who are leading the way in this important field.