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The Value of the Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate: A Graduate’s Review

The Value of the Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate: A Graduate’s Review

Someone once asked me if the course is worth the money. Short answer, a resounding YES. Since earning my Plant-Based Nutrition Certificate from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies and eCornell in 2009, I have been greatly rewarded in many ways that I never anticipated at the time.

For example, I met with another graduate of the program. A doctor of public health, he’s enjoyed a rich career in government and academia; now serving on the Harvard faculty in the department of public health. He also served as a special advisor to the U.S. Senate Committee charged with rewriting our federal health care system during the past few years. We met to discuss a few ideas for changing the world — by leveraging the simple principles of plant-based nutrition. Without my taking the eCornell Plant-Based Nutrition program online, this meeting would never have happened.

Below is a question I received regarding the certificate program:

“Mr. Hicks, I enjoy your blog and your book. I am interested in your thoughts on Dr. Campbell’s certificate course from eCornell. It is something I am considering, but my question is about the course content. I have read The China Study and much of the print material from Drs. Fuhrman, McDougall, Esselstyn and others. Does the course material enhance this information, or repeat it? I would appreciate your thoughts.
Regards, John”

My response. As a writer, blogger and speaker in the field of diet and health, I am very glad that I earned a certificate in Plant-Based Nutrition from the Center for Nutrition Studies and eCornell. Here are my primary reasons for feeling that way; they go far beyond just the knowledge that you will gain from the course.

  • The assignments (including short essays) played a large role in prompting my decision to write a book. It showed me that it was fun to write about my new passion and that I had a gift for making complex things simple and compelling.
  • The “big picture” focus of the class was right up my alley. The course is not just the nutritional reasons for eating plant-based; it also covers a great many environmental issues.
  • Good networking opportunities both during the course and after.
  • The additional knowledge gained from the course after studying the topic for seven years.
  • The great feeling of knowing that with my certificate I have more formal training in nutrition than most MDs in America. Remember; the few that had ANY nutrition training in med school — their course(s) were USDA approved and therefore lacking in very much true, health-promoting nutritional information.
  • Earning the certificate shows that you’re serious.

Bottom line. I’d say go for it; it may be the best money you’ll ever spend.

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