P.H.Ec. Interview with Hala Mousa
I have a Bachelor of Science in Human Ecology with a specialization in family studies. I graduated from Brescia University College in 2016. I’ve been a member of the London Home Economics Association (LHEA) since 2015. With LHEA, I have been the program coordinator for events and the co-chair for the past two years.
Last year, I held a booth at the OHEA conference for my business, Ra Ferments. I started the business in November 2017. It’s a lot of work to start your own business, and it is not encouraging until you are finally able to see results. Making sales and having happy repeat customers is extremely encouraging and I’m very fortunate to have had some great customer exposure through OHEA and LHEA.
Running your own business takes a lot of time of effort and planning to execute, and life can get busy when you are juggling multiple items like working full-time. Currently, it is a side project, but I would love to grow it later when I have more time to focus on the business.
My current role is as a Nutrition Associate at KGK Science. KGK Science is a contract research organization that conducts clinical trials in the nutraceutical space. My role involves relaying nutritional information the sponsor would like the participant to follow during the trial. I also do a significant amount of food record data entry as well as nutrient analysis.
What is an interesting fact about yourself?
I enjoy playing music, specifically guitar. I’ve been playing for 10 years. I lean towards playing classical music the most.
How long have you been an OHEA member and why did you join?
I’ve been a student member since I joined in my fourth year in 2015. I became a Professional Home Economist (P.H.Ec.) with OHEA in 2016. I believe that the aspects of home economics are extremely transferable to multiple areas and felt it would be important for me to be a part of the association.
It has been good to apply home economics to my own life. I am interested in the educational component and emphasizing the importance of learning essential life skills at a young age. I want to get more people interested in home economics. Ideally, I would like to work in public policy to help integrate home economics more into school curricula.
How do you feel that being an OHEA member and a P.H.Ec. has benefited you thus far?
Being an OHEA member and P.H.Ec. has given me networking opportunities to meet with home economists, especially at conferences. It has allowed me to meet with interesting people and see engaging presentations by guest speakers. The association helped me make connections in the community and helped further my career by connecting me to others in the profession.
How does being a P.H.Ec. tie into your everyday life, both personal and professional?
Home Economics is in everything we do. It includes meal planning, grocery shopping, budgeting – it’s multifaceted. I think we all need to learn the basic principles of Home Economics to succeed in everyday life. Eating healthily, preparing food safely, knowing which foods to buy, and being financially aware and organized are all things that would benefit anyone.
Being a P.H.Ec. has positively impacted my life for these reasons. I feel confident knowing I am doing these things properly.
Where do you see the profession going in the next five to 10 years?
In the next five to 10 years, I can see the profession becoming integrated into many social and health services. There are a few community health centres in London which are ideal settings for home economics classes or programs. Life skills are what we know how to do best as P.H.Ecs., and we are equipped with the information and practical knowledge to help others. There is a need and opportunity for P.H.Ecs. to act in a community support and education role.
What advice do you have for new, or aspiring PHEcs?
Network as much as possible. You’d be surprised as to what kinds of jobs and opportunities you can have as a P.H.Ec. Talking to people and networking allows you to see what kind of skills you can use for a job, and what type of education and certificates you need. You will be surprised where the P.H.Ec. designation can take you.
You can really get to know the field by talking to people who have experienced it.
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The Ontario Home Economics Association, a self-regulating body of professional Home Economists, promotes high professional standards among its members so that they may assist families and individuals to achieve and maintain a desirable quality of life.