Vivica Kraak was recently named assistant professor of human nutrition, foods, and exercise in the Virginia Tech College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

She is one of 19 new faculty members that were recently hired in the college. New positions were identified to bring new talent to its focus areas, including food and health, infectious disease, biodesign and processing, and agricultural profitability and environmental sustainability. The new faculty members are distributed across teaching, research, and Extension. 

Kraak received her Ph.D. in population health from Deakin University, her master's degree in nutritional sciences from Case Western Reserve University, and her bachelor's degree in nutritional sciences from Cornell University. 

The focus of Kraak’s research and teaching explores U.S. and international food and nutrition policies. 

Five specific themes addressed by her research activities and publications are using population-based approaches to promote healthy lifestyles and prevent obesity and noncommunicable diseases among children and adolescents; encouraging government and corporate responsibility and accountability for healthy food environments; monitoring and evaluating the value of public-private partnerships to address obesity and diet-related noncommunicable diseases; improving the food industry’s marketing practices to promote a healthy diet and achieve health promotion targets for U.S. children and adolescents; and ensuring that translational research is relevant to policymakers and decision-makers in varying contexts. 

She is a member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Public Health Association, the American Society for Nutrition, and the World Public Health Nutrition Association.