ICN Applied Research

The Institute of Child Nutrition, Applied Research Division (ICN, ARD) is located at the University of Southern Mississippi (USM) in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. ARD supports the ICN mission by systematically conducting research and development projects that influence child nutrition operational practices by increasing knowledge, providing research based resources, and determining best practices for issues impacting the operation and improvement of Child Nutrition Programs.


Our primary research threads include: operational accountability, customer service, best practices, human resources, wellness, and equipment purchasing and facility design. ARD partners with State Agency staff, child nutrition professionals, content experts, consultants, and other university faculty to conduct research. As a result, user-friendly resources, reports and Insights are developed for use by child nutrition professionals which are available free of charge on the ICN website.


Research reports and ICN Insights present the results of research with practical applications to achieving excellence in Child Nutrition Program operations such as the NationalSchool Lunch Program (NSLP), School Breakfast Program, Summer Food Service Program, and Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP).


To find research documents click Document Library tab at the top of the page and choose List Research Resources by Title, or search by the keyword, research. You can also find research resources by visiting the Subject Index and clicking on the Research link.

ARD News:

IICN, ARD presented posters highlighting current research at the School Nutrition Association's 2016 Annual National Conference in San Antonio, TX.

Download ICN Applied Research Division: SNA ANC 2016 Poster Session



Keith Rushing, PhD, RD

Shellie Hubbard, MA
Research Assistant

Marjuyua Lartey-Rowser, PhD, RD
Research Scientist

Kristi Lewis, PhD, RD
Research Scientist

Karen S. Lott
Office Administrator

Jane M. Peterson, PhD, RD
Research Scientist






Contact Us:

ICN, Applied Research Division
The University of Southern Mississippi
118 College Drive #5060
Hattiesburg, MS 39406
Phone: (601) 261-2480
Toll free 1-800-321-3054
Fax: (601) 261-3783


Shipping Address
2609 West 4th Street
Hattiesburg, MS 39401






Search our online research resources center