By Nicole Veenstra
With the increasing emphasis on living and eating healthy, many Americans have started to find ways of blending the two into manageable and cost-effective options.
For Tiffany Ervin and Teresa Trotta, both juniors and Radio/TV majors at Rider, the opportunity to show others how to start eating healthy fell onto their plates last semester during a class with Scott Alboum, video technologies coordinator and professor of communication.
“[Our teacher] told us about the competition in our TV Production class,” Trotta said. “It wasn’t mandatory, but I thought, ‘Why not?’ It sounded like a great opportunity and good practice.”
The competition was for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, specifically the Fruit and Veggies Video Challenge for choosemyplate.gov.
The challenge consisted of three categories that people of any age could submit videos to: tips for kids, tips when eating at home and tips when eating away from home. The website encouraged participants to “create videos that are inspiring and instructive,” while simultaneously giving viewers tips on how to save money.
Ervin submitted her video to the category “tips for kids” while Trotta chose to focus on how to eat healthy away from home, each taking second place in their respective category.
“I chose the tips for kids category because I have two nephews and a niece,” Ervin said. “I asked my sister what she does with her kids and she helped me with the video.”
Her video featured young children on a food-shopping trip with their mom. The video encourages parents to get their kids involved in buying food for the family by letting them “pick out the fruits and vegetables they like.” It also shows the average price of certain fruits and vegetables that many will find appealing, such as bananas, cucumbers and grapes.
On the other hand, Trotta chose her category because she felt it would be “easy to relate to college students.”
After interning at Gov. Christie’s office as the new media intern last semester, Trotta found herself in a balancing act between eating healthy and keeping up with a packed schedule. Her video gives viewers ideas of how to whip up quick but healthy options, such as blending a fresh fruit smoothie for breakfast and creating a prepackaged salad for lunch.
As for the future, both Ervin and Trotta agree that placing second will help them in their future endeavors.
Ervin has already put the video up on her résumé website and continues to look for additional video challenges to enter, while Trotta said the recognition gave her more confidence that she is going in the right direction.
“At this point, I’m just happy about the fact that I can show the video to people during future interviews,” Trotta said. “The competition gave me affirmation that I’m in the right major.”