Department of Nutrition

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Former MCH Trainees

Randa Meade, MS, MPH, RDN

Randa Meade served as a funded MCH trainee from 2013-2017 during her tenure at the University of Tennessee while completing her Master of Science in Public Health Nutrition and her Master of Public Health in Health Policy and Management.  While studying at the University of Tennessee, Randa also completed minors in epidemiology and statistics, the health policy interdisciplinary graduate certificate, and her dietetic internship.  Randa currently works for the Tennessee Department of Education’s School Nutrition Program as the Menu Planning and Culinary Specialist where she provides training and technical assistance in these areas.  Randa also works with local school nutrition programs to increase children’s access to healthy meals through the Seamless Summer Option and the School Breakfast Program.  Randa relates much of her success in her early career as a public health nutritionist to the skills she learned and experiences she had as a funded trainee.  The training grant provided Randa with practice experiences and professional connections that led her to her current position.  Randa is passionate about feeding kids and her long-term career goal is to work with anti-hunger non-profit. Randa loves all things food and cooking and when not at work you can find her in the kitchen or exploring the Nashville food scene.  She is originally from small, rural town in the heart of Virginia’s Appalachian Mountains and has one dog, Duke.


Megan Rodgers, MS, RDN, LDN

Megan Rodgers, an alumni of the Maternal and Child Health Leadership traineeship, is a registered and licensed dietitian at the Knox County Health Department. At the University of Tennessee, Megan obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition, Master of Science in Public Health Nutrition. Megan’s work at the health department focuses on planning, implementing and evaluating an afterschool program that teaches children about the importance of healthy eating and physical activity. She also strives to improve the afterschool environment through policy, systems and environmental changes that positively impact all students who attend afterschool care at these sites. Megan’s work directly engages the MCH population, which she grew to love through her time as a trainee. She is an active member of the Knoxville Area Afterschool Network and is on the Board of Directors for the Knoxville Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.


Shanthi Appelö, MS, RDN, LDN

Shanthi Appelö is a former MCH Leadership Trainee (2015-2016). A graduate of University of Tennessee, Shanthi obtained a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition, Master of Science in Public Health Nutrition. Shanthi is a registered and licensed dietitian nutritionist at the Knox County Health Department with programming in chronic disease prevention and treatment with a focus on health equity. A native of Enköping, Sweden, Shanthi strives to make her programming culturally and linguistically suitable for minority populations. Through her work, she particularly enjoys working with the maternal and child population. Shanthi enjoys engaging in the local media and is a columnist for the Greater Knoxville Area Business Journal. She is also adjunct faculty member at Tennessee Technological University where she teaches a Nutrition through the Lifespan course. Shanthi holds a leadership position in the local Knoxville Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics board of directors as the Legislative Chair.

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