Valerie Tarasuk, BA, BEd, BAsc, MSc,PhD

Valeri TarasukGraduate Teaching Award – Graduate Student Mentorship

Department of Nutritional Sciences & Dalla Lana School of Public Health

Context(s) for Award:
Exemplary supervision of graduate students interested in food security and policy related to food (in)security.

Valerie Tarasuk received her PhD from the University of Toronto, where she was fortunate to study with George Beaton, an internationally renowned nutritional scientist and very gifted mentor. She joined the Faculty in 1994 and holds appointments in the Department of Nutritional Sciences and Dalla Lana School of Public Health.  Much of her research focuses on problems of household food insecurity in Canada, considering their origins and nutrition implications and examining policy and program responses. Paralleling this work is an ongoing program of research on Canadian food policy, offering a critical perspective on such issues as nutrition labelling and food fortification as these relate to population health concerns. She currently leads an interdisciplinary research program to identify effective policy interventions to reduce food insecurity in Canada with support from a CIHR Programmatic Grant in Health and Health Equity.

As a professor at the University of Toronto, I am privileged to work with some extraordinarily talented graduate students.  For me, mentorship is about discovering and celebrating my students’ gifts and creating opportunities for them to apply their talents to work on important contemporary problems in the field of nutrition.  The stimulating interactions I have with graduate students help fuel my passion for research.