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Center for Nutrition and Performance


Drexel’s Center for Nutrition & Performance is a collaboration of Drexel Athletics and the Department of Nutrition Sciences. Our mission is to provide evidence-based nutritional advice to the entire Drexel community to optimize athletic performance, well-being, and overall health. At CNP, we believe the competitive edge is only a bite away.


Nyree Dardarian, MS, RD, CSSD, LDN, FAND - Center for Nutrition & Performance, Director, Assistant Clinical Professor, Individualized Supervised Practice Pathway, Coordinator

Andrea Irvine, MS, RD, LDN - Sports Dietitian, Athletics Department, Center for Nutrition & Performance, Assistant Director

Kellsey Frank, MS, RD, LDN - Sports Dietitian, Center for Nutrition & Performance, Assistant Director

Paige Durovsik - MS Human Nutrition 2019
Khushboo Jain - MS Human Nutrition 2020
Amber Remy Lazar - BS Nutrition and Foods 2020
Ruihan Li - BS Nutrition and Foods 2020
Natalia Lopez Grajales - BS Nutrition and Foods 2020
Leslie MacManus - MS Human Nutrition 2019
Julia Maher - BS Nutrition and Foods 2019
Rushali Parekh - MS Human Nutrition 2020
Taylor Stanton - BS Nutrition and Foods 2020
Tatiana Vélez Burgos - MS Human Nutrition 2019
Briana Walsh - BS Nutrition and Foods 2019
Taylor Wilson - MS Human Nutrition 2019

Past Members


Maddie DeMoss
Kylie McKenzie
Julia Rovera
Kira Sy


Coco Ellis
Ben Graff
Ginger Lemon
Jessica Liu
Danielle Talenti
Leah Tsui
Rachel Lee
Molly Andersen
Gabriella Balla
Ridhima Phukan


Joe Stanzione
Nicole Stein
Dan Yohe
Maggie Buell
Rachel Lee
Erin Sheridan


Hiral Pael
Margaret Buell
Elena Leva
Victoria Smith
Ashley Bannister
Deorah Bateman
Marlee Finkelstein
Rachel Driscoll
Chelsea Hoover
Stephanie Talerico
Madeline Graham
Erin Sheridan
Alison Smith
Huijing Yang
Keren Kapoano


Nora Rosenfeld
Kamram Ahmad
Elena Itzkowitz
Sarah Wysocki
Lorren Lutz
Jie Zhou
Alicia Lamaroux
Yajie Zhang
Beth Cecarelli
Suzanne Watkins


Erica Hirsch
Sarah Novelly
Andrea Grasso
Rhianna Cenci
Courtney Plush
Amy Von Sydow Green
Mary Beth Geyer
Kristen Kochenour


Molly Biehl
Abigail Duffine Gilman
Mary Beth Geyer
Kianna Richardson
Rhianna Cenci

The internship is a three quarter commitment for selected students. Each intern is required to uphold the mission of the Center and fulfill the requirements of the job description. The internship will provide a unique interdisciplinary experience for each student. Internship applications will be accepted in March for the upcoming year. New interns will start the internship in the spring term to shadow and train with current interns. The official internship will include fall, winter and spring term of the following academic year. Undergraduate interns are required to register for 1 research credit each term of enrollment.

Roles and Responsibilities

Responsibilities may include research and data collection, preparation and delivery of nutrition group presentations, literature reviews, creating nutrition fact sheets, website development and maintenance, bulletin board development, working with athletic teams, and management of athlete lounge.
Undergraduate interns will be required to develop and submit an educational plan for approval, which will be evaluated and updated in conjunction with the faculty advisor each term.  At the completion of each term, the faculty advisor will complete an internship evaluation.

Meet the Dietitians who Fuel Philadelphia’s Professional Teams

The 7th Annual Sports Nutrition Conference is an event that you don’t want to miss! This conference brings together nationally renowned, highly accomplished professionals from nutrition, sports performance, and fitness fields to share their findings, expertise, and experience to aspiring individuals in the world of sports nutrition, athletics, and wellness.

Thursday, May 17, 2018 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

The Wells Fargo Center Hall of Fame, room 3601
South Broad Street Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19148

Registrant Fee
Professional $70.00
Drexel Alumni $50.00
Drexel Faculty/Preceptors and students $15.00

Register Now


Learning Objectives

  1. Identify how and when to implement nutrition strategies for professional athletes.
  2. Describe how sport psychologist and sports dietitians can work together to improve performance.
  3. Describe the use of magnesium in the athlete.
Time Activity
11:00 - 11:45 a.m. Registration and Lunch provided by our sponsor Zoe’s Kitchen, vegetarian options will be available
11:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Welcome, Nyree Dardarian, MS, RD, CSSD, FAND, LDN
12:00 - 12:45 p.m. Linda Edwards, RN, MSN
12:45 - 1:30 p.m. Jarrod Spenser, PsyD
1:30 - 1:45 p.m. Break
1:45 - 2:30 p.m. Jeannie Schubach, EdD, MA, CSSD, LDN
2:30 - 3:15 p.m. Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, RD, LDN, FACSM
3:15 - 4:00 p.m. Michael Minnis, MS, RD, CSCS
4:00 p.m. Closing Remarks


Linda Edwards, RN, MSN

Level II IASIS Micro-Current Neurofeedback Practitioner
Resilient Me BioHacking Studio, Rumson, NJ

Linda Edwards, RN, MSN, Level II IASIS Micro-Current Neurofeedback Practitioner, Resilient Me BioHacking Studio, Rumson, NJLinda Edwards is a Level II IASIS Micro-Current Neurofeedback Practitioner at Resilient Me BioHacking Studio in Rumson, NJ. She holds a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of Pennsylvania. Edwards has extensive experience in clinical practice as well as in managing human capital health management programs for Fortune 100 companies. As a micro-current neurofeedback practitioner, Edwards helps clients, such as athletes, improve their focus, creativity and sleep, as well as ease general and performance anxiety.

Jarrod Spencer, PsyD

Sports Psychologist
Mind of Athlete, Bethlehem, PA

Jarrod Spencer, PsyD, Sports Psychologist, Mind of the Athlete, Bethlehem, PAJarrod Spencer is an experienced sports psychologist and leading authority on the mind of the athlete. He works with athletes and teams at the professional, Olympic, collegiate and high school level to improve their well-being as well as nurture their emotional health. Spencer is president and founder of Mind of the Athlete®, LLC, a sports psychology company in Bethlehem, PA. Some of his other accomplishments include creating the Mind of the Athlete® Program, a video and audio sports psychology curriculum, as well as authoring the book The Sky is Not the Limit: Discovering the True North for Your Life's Path.

Stella Lucia Volpe, PhD, RD, FACSM, LDN

Professor and Chair, Department of Nutrition Sciences
Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions, Philadelphia, PA

Stella Lucia Volpe PhD, RD, FACSM, LDN, Professor and Chair, Department of Nutrition Sciences Drexel University, Philadelphia, PAStella L. Volpe, PhD, RD, LDN, FACSM is professor and chair of the Department of Nutrition Sciences. She is a nutritionist and exercise physiologist whose work on obesity and diabetes prevention, body composition, bone mineral density and mineral metabolism and exercise represent more than a decade of consistent funding. Prior to beginning her appointment as professor and chair in January 2011 at Drexel University, Volpe was on faculty at the University of Pennsylvania from 2004 to 2010. Prior to that appointment, she was on faculty at the University of Massachusetts from 1994 through 2003.

Jeanie Subach, EdD, MA, RD, CSSD, LDN

Assistant Professor, Sports Nutritionist
West Chester University, West Chester, PA

Jeanie Subach, EdD, MA, RD, CSSD, LDN, Philadelphia 76ersJeanie Subach is the sports nutritionist for the Philadelphia 76ers, since 1989. She earned her bachelor’s degree in home economics and a master's in nutrition education from Immaculata University. She then completed her doctoral studies in educational leadership and management at Capella University. In addition to being the sports nutritionist for the Philadelphia 76ers, Subach also is the nutrition preceptor for the Sports Medicine Fellows in the Crozer Keystone Sport Medicine fellowship program. All in all, Subach is passionate about food, cooking, gardening and entertaining.

Michael Minnis, MS, RD, CSCS

Performance Nutrition Coordinator
Philadelphia Eagles, Philadelphia, PA

Michael Minnis, MS, RD, CSCS, Philadelphia EaglesMichael Minnis is the Philadelphia Eagles performance nutrition coordinator. He holds a master's degree in human nutrition from Kansas State University. Minnis has previous experience as director of performance nutrition for football at the University of Southern California. He has been featured in several publications, including an interview for Weik Fitness, in addition to appearing on the podcasts Decoding Excellence and Feeding the Birds.


Commission on Dietetic Registration Accerdited ProviderContinuing Professional Education units (CPEUs) certificates will be provided to registered participants attending the full program.

Drexel University College of Nursing and Health Professions is a Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Accredited Provider with the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). CDR credentialed practioners will receive 4 Continuing Professional Education units (CPEU’s) for completion of this conference.



The Wells Fargo Center, room and set-up

Zoe’s Kitchen, lunch


KIND Healthy Snacks



Hotel and Travel

This course will be held at the Wells Fargo Center, courtesy of the Philadelphia Flyers.


Parking in the lot is free. Enter through the executive entrance (glass double doors), located by the Broad Street West entrance. A security guard will be present.

Discounted Hotel Rates

Drexel University has discounted hotels in Philadelphia. Please visit our list of hotels with Drexel University Discount Rates. Please note: discount rates are based on availability.

Suggested hotels: Hilton Philadelphia at Penn's Landing 201 South Columbus Boulevard Philadelphia, PA 19106

6-week Introduction to Sports Nutrition Seminar Series
This 6-week interactive series is an overview of key performance related nutrition topics developed for NCAA teams.  Each session approximately 15 minutes to fit into your teams schedule. Coaches are encouraged to schedule all six sessions during pre-season.
Topics include:

  • Sport Specific Nutrition Tips
  • Pre/Post-Workout Nutrition
  • Eating on the Road
  • Dietary Supplements

To schedule the series please email Andrea Irvine, MS, RD, LDN

Dragon Gels
A sports supplement developed for  intra-workout fueling gel containing ~38 grams of carbohydrates per serving, to quickly replenish glycogen stores during competition. Dragon Gels are made in-house by the CNP team. To order Dragon Gels for your team please contact Andrea Irvine, MS, RD, LDN
Game Day Meal Plans
Provide teams with a customized 24-48 hour meal plans with fueling guidelines for home and away competition. Assist athletes in choosing the best options when eating on the road.
Onsite Nutrition Support
Offer onsite assistance for athletes to make appropriate nutrition choices prior to, in between, and after competition. The CNP team collaborates with coaching staff to determine specific nutritional needs and can prepare fueling options as necessary.
Specialty Programming
Presentations on various nutrition-related topics can be developed by the CNP team and delivered to all groups within the Drexel community. Previous presentations have included the following topics:
-Eating for Energy Balance: Female Athlete Triad
-Guided Grocery Shopping Tour
-Nutrition and Stress
Athlete Specific Grocery Tours
Offer athlete-focused supermarket tours on how to provide optimal nutritional support for NCAA Division I athletes. Strategies to combat nutritional deficits and common problems facing athletes during training and competitions are covered. Tours are approximately 45 minutes in length and can be scheduled by emailing

Philadelphia Union, Major League Soccer, Bethlehem Steele, YSC Academy
Contracted to provide ongoing performance nutrition strategies for the team.

Philadelphia Flyers, National Hockey League and Lehigh Phantoms
Contracted to provide ongoing performance nutrition strategies for the team.

World University Games – Korea 2015 & Taiwan 2017
The World University Games is an international multi-sport event, organized for university athletes by the International University Sports Federation. The partnership between Drexel and the World University Games began in 2015 with the Summer Universiade in Gwanju City, South Korea; CNP Interns traveled to Korea and offered nutrition guidance to the athletes. The 2017 Summer Universiade will be hosted in Taipei, Taiwan. Through this partnership, CNP Interns have an opportunity to implement their classroom knowledge in a real-world setting.
CNP Interns offer nutrition support and guidance to World University Games’ athletes by:

  • Creating educational resources on sports nutrition guidelines for international travel and dietary customs of host country
  • Providing onsite nutrition advice, including navigating the dining hall and pre-/post-event nutrition, in the Athlete’s Village during throughout the competition

Union League of Philadelphia
Offer onsite nutrition counseling for Union League staff.

Merion Cricket Club
Conducted recipe analysis and developed nutrition facts labels for healthy menu initiative.

Community Nutrition Presentations and Tabling Events < p/> Provide Drexel organizations and members of the Philadelphia community with nutrition tips, including healthy urban eating, nutrition & stress, and nutrition for exercise & sport. Past events have included:
Philadelphia Annual Veterans Resource Fair

  • Drexel University Benefits Fair
  • Science Night at the Ballpark
  • Drexel University Wellness on Wheels

CNP Director, Nyree Dardarian, first developed the concept of the Dragon Gel while counseling athletes on the Drexel Men’s Soccer team. After learning that members of the team were in need of a halftime fuel source, Dardarian set out to find something that contained enough carbohydrate to replenish what players had used, so they could continue to perform for the duration of the game. What she discovered was the products currently on the market left a lot to be desired. Working with a group of CNP Interns and the Food Science Department, Dardarian began the process of developing a halftime fuel source that would provide sufficient carbohydrate while still being palatable. The final result was the Dragon Gel.

A Dragon Gel is a 1.5 ounce gummy-like product packed with ~38 grams of carbohydrate that has a delicious blue-raspberry flavor. Dragon Gels are produced by members of CNP in the Metabolic Lab Kitchen at Drexel’s Three Parkway Building.

The Dragon Gel replenishes muscle glycogen stores that are depleted during competition. It contains ~38 grams of carbohydrate (fructose and dextrose), the body’s preferred fuel source, and only 1 gram of protein, so it provides an athlete with energy that won’t leave them feeling weighed down or sluggish.

How to Order
Drexel Athletics Staff Members can access the Dragon Gel order form via the Athletics Sharepoint website.

Learn More
If you are interested in learning more about how Dragon Gels can help take your team’s athletic performance to the next level, please contact Andrea Irvine, MS, RD, LDN