COVID-19 update: All of New Zealand is now at Red. More information.

Dr Wham awarded Dietitians NZ Award of Excellence

Dr Wham was presented with the Dietitians NZ Award of Excellence in Wellington last month.

Massey dietetics student Rachel Blair, pictured here with Dr Wham,
was awarded the Bernice Kelly Award for the most improved full-time
dietetic student.

Associate Professor Carol Wham from Massey University’s School of Sport, Exercise and Nutrition recently received the prestigious Dietitians NZ Award of Excellence in the category of Outstanding Achievement in Dietetics. She was presented the award at Te Papa in Wellington late last month.

Dr Wham, from Kohimarama in Auckland, has had three very impressive and distinctive careers as a New Zealand registered dietitian. She spent the first decade as a clinical dietitian specialising in paediatrics and during this time was awarded a Royal Society Prince and Princess of Wales Award to study for the advanced certificate in paediatric nutrition at the Institute of Child Health in London.

She then went on to work in the private sector where she used her knowledge and skills in the development of the Karicare range of nutrition products, and led and executed nutrition promotion initiatives with the New Zealand Nutrition Foundation and Osteoporosis NZ, as well as leading external nutrition communications and public relations activities related to milk and nutrition. She also completed a Master of Science with Distinction from the University of Otago, investigating the iron status of nine to 24-month-old children. Dr Wham then gained a PhD from the University of Adelaide, investigating the nutritional implications of the decline of milk intake over the previous twenty years.

She is currently the domain leader for Public Health Nutrition on the Dietetic programme at Massey’s Auckland campus. Her work as nutrition investigator in Life and Living to Advanced age: A Cohort Study in NZ, provides the first detailed examination of nutrient intake in Māori and non-Māori octogenarians.

Dr Wham also leads the ENRICH study (Evaluating Nutrition Risk and Intervening to enCourage Healthy-eating), which aims to evaluate malnutrition risk prevalence and associated risk factors among older people living in the community, and at early admission to hospital and residential care. Potential intervention strategies towards improving food intake of older adults are a challenging work in progress. She is recognised as an authority in her field within and outside the profession both nationally and internationally.

Dr Wham says receiving the award was one of her proudest moments. “To be recognised by my peers is the highest accolade I could have hoped for. Dietetics has offered me an incredibly diverse career and it’s very rewarding to come full circle and be involved in training new graduates with new endeavours.”

Massey dietetics student Rachel Blair was also honoured at the awards – receiving the Bernice Kelly Award for the most improved full-time dietetic student from either Massey University, University of Otago or University of Auckland.

Related articles

Dehydration in older people – a fluids situation
Understanding malnutrition in vulnerable older New Zealanders
Massey student wins Bernice Kelly Award
Veges don’t make the cut in school kitchens