Craig A. Hassel, PhD
Associate Professor and Extension Nutritionist
Areas of Interest
- Exploring food and health with cultural communities holding knowledge that does not correspond with Western science perspectives. This work pivots the culture/science relationship as it repositions scientific inquiry alongside ancient, ancestral and experiential understandings of food and health.
- Creating models of cross-cultural engagement that reform scientific inquiry to be more respectful of diverse ways of knowing. Examples include: 1) Using principles of Chinese medical theory and contemporary sensory analysis to explicate medicinal herb quality; 2) Using indigenous heirloom crop varieties, including wild rice, to explore Indigenous and biomedical worldviews; 3) Faculty development and cross-cultural symposia that embrace multiple worldview orientations.
- The University of Minnesota Center for Spirituality & Healing
- The Inter-institutional Consortium for Indigenous Knowledge at Penn State University
- The Cultural Wellness Center in Minneapolis and St. Paul
- The White Earth Tribal Council
- Minnesota Extension Service Nutrition & Health - specialist support to Extension Educators focusing on diet/health and vital aging programming
- Woodlands Wisdom Nutrition Project – work closely with a confederacy of six Tribal Colleges and the University of Minnesota to address chronic health issues in Native American communities through culturally-based food and nutrition programs of teaching, research and community connections
- Families That Work Outreach – work with urban and rural American Indian Communities to assist with developing nutrition education approaches that honor traditional foods and its relationship to land and human health.
- Medicinal Herb Network – work closely with this network, founded as partnership effort of small-scale medicinal herb growers and practitioners of Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) to communicate concepts of medicinal herb quality and to encourage locally grown, high quality medicinal herbs.