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Faculty Spotlight: Jennifer Gillin

Focused on being the best mom, instructor, and nutritionist she can be, Professor Jennifer Gillin seems to be doing it all. From coordinating the M.S. in Nutrition/Dietetic Internship program as director to helping students address food-related crises around the world through faith-based principles and practices, professor Gillin is a professor and scholar hungry to lead and empower individuals, especially those with economic need, to achieve better nutrition and healthier lifestyles. Earning her stripes as a collaborative member of the ACU Online family, professor Gillin inspires her students to continue dreaming and believing that everything and anything is possible with God at the center of their lives. Hoping to continue her legacy at ACU Online, professor Gillin shares her love for culinary arts, nutrition, and service to others. With the hopes of building a strong and robust program, professor Gillin is already making herself known as a goal-setter and master achiever. 

A Student of Christian Education

As a little girl growing up in the suburbs of Dallas, Texas, professor Gillin remembers what her parents and family members said about the importance of being a God-fearing woman. Being highly involved in her church and community, professor Gillin attended private Christian schools, giving her the chance to participate in various extracurricular activities like cheerleading and track as well as take an interest in topics like nutrition. Growing up, her mom, who worked as a nurse practitioner, professor Gillin says it wasn’t surprising to her (or her mom) that she would develop an passion for nutritional science. Watching her mom work around hospital settings, professor Gillin was impressed and astonished at how much nutrition played a role in a patient’s diagnosis or treatment plan. Hoping also to make a difference in the lives of others before they got into serious medical issues, professor Gillin worked diligently throughout her high school years to get into the best college program for nutrition and dietetics. Landing at Baylor University, professor Gillin pursued her bachelor’s degree in nutrition and excelled. 

“Looking back, I see how I was really meant to study something like nutrition,” professor Gillin said. “My background, with cheerleading and sports, and my mom, all kind of guided me to think about people in a different way.”  

After completing her bachelor’s degree, professor Gillin jumped straight into her graduate degree in nutrition and dietetics at Texas Woman’s University, where she received the skills and knowledge to enter into the healthcare system – just like she always wanted. For nearly 13 years, professor Gillin worked at Baylor Scott and White serving in departments related to direct patient care. Learning the ins and outs of the hospital and how patients understand the importance of nutrition, professor Gillin decided she wanted to be in management, so she enrolled – and completed – her Master of Business Administration. Becoming the superstar across her department, professor Gillin realized that maybe she wanted to teach students, too. 

Leading Change at ACU Online

After working for several years in healthcare, professor Gillin was offered a position as an adjunct instructor for the nursing and nutrition department at ACU in Abilene, Texas Working with soon-to-be nurses, professor Gillin was ecstatic to be alongside fellow healthcare professionals who wanted to make a difference in the lives of their patients. Needless to say, professor Gillin was thoroughly enjoying all the blessings coming her way. 

“My sister worked as a nursing professor at the residential campus,” professor Gillin remarked. “To be able to work with her and with the students, plus have the chance to teach about nutritional science was honestly the best for me. I could not have dreamed up a better career or scenario for myself at that time.” 

Hearing about her great work ethic and excellent classes, professor Gillin was later offered a full-time position at ACU Online, where she would lead the nutritional and dietetic program as director. Beyond growing a family and running her household, professor Gillin saw this opportunity as an answer to a prayer she hadn’t even thought about yet. Being able to work remotely while caring for her family was one of the best moves God ever made in her life. Pushing her from location to location, degree to degree, professor Gillin sees God’s hand throughout her journey before and now at ACU Online. Seeing how He works in so many mysterious and beautiful ways, professor Gillain surrendered to His will for her life; ready to make the moves (or not) according to His plan. 

“It’s amazing to see how God is so provisional,” professor Gillin commented. “He has blessed me beyond measure, and it’s only made me stronger and made me trust Him even more.” 

Raising a family and growing in her next phase of life, professor Gillin is eager to see what else is in store for her at ACU Online. Completing her third year as a Wildcat, professor Gillin sees the benefits students can have when they receive a Christian education. Understanding the difficulties students have to undergo to achieve their educational goals, professor Gillin hopes to be a light for students interested in making an impact in their communities by pouring into them her time, energy, and heart. Growing the program one term at a time, professor Gillin is praying for a brighter future and is already making moves to make it the best it can be. 

Are you interested in taking classes from professors like professor Gillin? Learn more about our programs today! Or, call our admissions team at 855-219-7300 to begin your journey at ACU Online.

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