Faculty and Staff

Gail Kauwell is professor and chair of the Department of Health Sciences at the University of Central Florida. Kauwell earned her master’s and doctoral degrees in food science and human nutrition from the University of Florida. She also completed an accredited dietetic internship program and earned the registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN) credential.

Kauwell is an experienced educator and researcher. Prior to taking her current position at UCF, she was a faculty member at UF, a position she held for slightly more than 36 years. In this capacity, she taught graduate and undergraduate students majoring in nutritional sciences and dietetics, and she served as the program director for the food science and human nutrition department’s accredited Master of Science – Dietetic Internship Program. She thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to teach, mentor, and supervise students dedicated to pursuing health and medically-related careers. Her teaching skills and passion have been recognized with numerous teaching, advising, and mentoring awards including the UF Undergraduate Teacher of the Year Award and the National USDA Excellence in Teaching Award.

Before accepting her current position at UCF, Kauwell’s research program focused on folate and vitamin B12 assessment, metabolism and requirements in humans; with a special interest in the association between nutrient-gene interactions and epigenetic modification in health maintenance/chronic disease risk. During her years as an active researcher, she and her co-investigators secured and managed >$3.8 million of funding and published in peer-reviewed journals, including some of the top-ranked nutrition journals. In addition to research, she also received grants aimed at translating research into consumer oriented “products” available free of charge to public health departments, WIC, 4-H, SNAP-Ed, and EFNEP.

In addition to her leadership as a program director, Kauwell also held a variety of elected and appointed dietetics-related leadership positions at the local, state, and national levels.

Credentials
  • Ph.D., Doctor of Philosophy, Food Science and Human Nutrition, University of Florida
  • RDN, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
  • LDN, Licensed Dietitian/Nutritionist
  • FAND, Fellow of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Areas of Specialty
  • Folate and vitamin B12 requirements and metabolism
  • Nutrient-gene interactions/epigenetic alterations and disease risk
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