Recipient: Yu Shaomei, Giam Yan Xin, Ler Yi Bin
Their passion for research has indeed paid off for these young ladies. Giam Yan Xin, Ler Yi Bin and Yu Shaomei’s Major Project, “Development of Renal Guidebooks for Asians” clinched them the prestigious Temasek Applied Science School’s project prize, as well as internship stints at the collaborating hospital. It was also showcased at the School’s annual Project Show.
In recent years, renal disease has been on the rise in Singapore. Sensing the need for the development of a comprehensive nutrition guide for renal patients, Khoo Teck Puat Hospital (Nutrition and Dietetics Department) had approached the School to embark on a collaborative project. The students, with the help of their in-house and external supervisors, devised guidebooks that would help patients manage kidney disease through diet. The books featured recipes for pre-dialysis patients, and those undergoing haemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. In addition, the team also designed educational tools, such as Renal Dietary Wheels, to help patients choose the right food. These tools would serve as ideal counseling tools for dietitians, healthcare professionals, caregivers and renal patients.
It was not an easy feat developing the guidebooks as the team had to formulate and test recipes that would be suitable for renal patients, specifically Asian patients. They worked hard, often clocking long hours at night, for over six months. Nonetheless, it was a valuable learning experience for the three young ladies, as it helped them hone their project management skills.
Their supervisor, Mdm Kalpana Bhaskaran, only has praises for the team. Their strengths were in their positive attitude, ability to capitalise on the unique strengths of each member and being receptive to feedback. The external supervisor felt that the team’s efforts were commendable as renal medical nutrition therapy was a completely new area to them. The panel of judges unanimously agreed that the project offered tremendous benefits to renal patients with recipes which were carefully modified by the team in consultation with the sponsoring hospital. These recipes could also be readily used by renal patients as the team had conducted small-scale sensory evaluation of the dishes.
All three project team members are currently making plans to pursue further education that is also aligned with their passion. In fact, Yi Bin has already received an offer to pursue the Bachelor of Nutrition and Dietetics at Flinders University. Temasek Polytechnic wishes them all the best in their future endeavours.
Temasek Polytechnic Supervisor: Mdm Kalpana Bhaskaran
External Supervisor (Senior Dietitian from Khoo Teck Puat Hospital): Ms Jerlyna Wan
Evaluator 1: Mdm Ong Eng Gim
Evaluator 2: Ms VerenaTan