E-interviews from our newsletter

In this section you'll find short e-interviews from RDs that are leaving their mark in different Nutrition niches.

 

Enjoy their stories and take home the pearls of wisdom they give to RD2Bs. 

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Pearls of Wisdom

 

From: Tatiana Vélez 

1. Which is one of your most memorable experiences as an RD?

 

Getting my first few patients in my private practice. Even though I knew I was very well prepared for my sessions and counseling my first few patients, building confidence and getting rid of the imposter syndrome was something I worked on. I was VERY excited but also nervous and many times didn't believe that my private practice was going so well at first. It was a *pinch me moment.*

 

2. What characteristics do you wish to see in future RDs?

 

Really depends on individual personality and area of practice. The more diversity, the better! However, I do believe that current nutrition students have undergone so many societal obstacles and seen changes in our career considering the events of these previous years. We're at a turning point in RDs being more compassionate than ever, more vocal on naming systematic factors that affect our health, and excellent analytical thinkers and communicators when it comes to health information, to name a few.

 

3. One pearl of wisdom for RD2Bs:

 

Find and connect with other Dietitians who you share similar values and look up to. Networking and finding a group of support in our profession is important for creating a safe space for questions, doubts and direction in your career development.

Pearls of Wisdom

 

From: Jalyme Hubbard

1. Which is one of your most memorable experiences as an RD?

 

Getting my first few patients in my private practice. Even though I knew I was very well prepared for my sessions and counseling my first few patients, building confidence and getting rid of the imposter syndrome was something I worked on. I was VERY excited but also nervous and many times didn't believe that my private practice was going so well at first. It was a *pinch me moment.*

 

2. What characteristics do you wish to see in future RDs?

 

Really depends on individual personality and area of practice. The more diversity, the better! However, I do believe that current nutrition students have undergone so many societal obstacles and seen changes in our career considering the events of these previous years. We're at a turning point in RDs being more compassionate than ever, more vocal on naming systematic factors that affect our health, and excellent analytical thinkers and communicators when it comes to health information, to name a few.

 

3. One pearl of wisdom for RD2Bs:

 

Find and connect with other Dietitians who you share similar values and look up to. Networking and finding a group of support in our profession is important for creating a safe space for questions, doubts and direction in your career development.

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1. Which is one of your most memorable experiences as an RD?

 

I was hired by an RD friend, Dawn Jackson Blatner, to help launch the minor league nutrition program for the Chicago Cubs. I didn't even have to interview for it because she knew I would be a great fit and pitched me to the team. This goes to show how important relationships are in this field. But the most memorable part of this job was the team actually winning a World Series in my first season. I got a World Series ring with my name on it!

 

2. What characteristics do you wish to see in future RDs?

 

I hope future dietitians can close the confidence gap that many current dietitians have. I hope future dietitians can focus more time and resources on personal development, mental health, mindset, and confidence skills, so that they can expand the field, advocate for better pay, start businesses, and ultimately help more people.

 

3. One pearl of wisdom for RD2Bs:

 

You can get a head start on your career now as a student! Explore the field, learn what other RDs do, start your business. I started All Access Dietetics when I was a senior in college. I interned with a sports RD in my junior year, who I then worked for in professional sports. You can set yourself up for great success the sooner you just start!

From: Jenny Westerkamp,RD,CSSD

 

Jenny Westerkamp  graduated with high honors from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and earned a Bachelor of Science in Food Science and Human Nutrition. She completed her dietetics training at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts.She is the Founder of All Access Dietetics; Nutrition Consultant of the  Chicago Bulls and  Owner of Fuel School.In 2016, Jenny was honored by Today’s Dietitian as one of 10 dietitians making a difference.Follow @allaccessdietetics on all social media platforms for more.

 

Jenny Westerkampwas kind enough to answer some questions for our future RD's!

 

By: Linibeth Peña

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From: Christy Gardner

 

Christy Gardner studied at Florida International University and received her Masters of Science in Dietetics and Nutrition. She is currently working with Nicklaus Children's Hospital, in the pediatric intensive care unit. She is also taking clients with Essence Nutrition which is a group of Registered Dieticians that focus on science, in order to help clients achieve their goals in health and nutrition. Apart from helping others, she enjoys going on runs. You can follow her on instagram @eatlikechristy

 

Christy Gardner was kind enough to answer some questions for our future RD's!

 

By: Yanetzi Vasquez

1. Which is one of your most memorable experiences as an RD?

 

My most memorable experiences as a pediatric RD have been managing nutrition support for patients with nutritional deficiencies where I provided dosing for individual vitamins, minerals and electrolytes to avoid complications of refeeding and malnutrition. As well I have enjoyed educating parents and families on specific diets for IBD, IBS and type 1 diabetes. Having a child with a chronic disease and a new diagnosis can be scary and overwhelming. Being able to reassure and empower families to manage these conditions is a rewarding experience.

 

2. What characteristics do you wish to see in future RDs?

 

Characteristics for future RDs to get involved, be confident in your skills and abilities and network!

 

3. One pearl of wisdom for RD2Bs:

 

Don’t wait for an opportunity, create one. Be proactive with your goals! You won’t have all the experience in the world after you finish school and internship, but initiative speaks volumes to future employers.

From: Dominique Symonette

  

I had the pleasure of speaking with Dominique Symonette, MS, RD, CDN. She graduated from New York University with a Master of Science. She has been working at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center as a Clinical Dietitian since 2006. What is fascinating about her career is how she is up to date about the latest cancer nutrition developments in the field. She is also a professor at our lovely FIU Modesto Campus teaching Dietetics Research for Bachelor students, bestowing students with the right educational tools to think like an RD and ask concrete questions when doing research in the dietetics field. 

 

Ms. Symonette was kind enough to answer some questions for our future RD's!

 

By: Jalyme Hubbard

1. Which is one of your most memorable experiences as an RD?

 

One of the most rewarding moments in my career was time spent working in pediatrics. I was able to design a feeding protocol (while working with nurses and the doctor's on staff) nutrient intake design for a bone marrow transplant patient. It was not just PO intake, or relying on the specialized nutrition support (TPN). It provided the individual a sense of normalcy with their food intake.

 

2. What characteristics do you wish to see in future RDs?

 

It is important to remember to always have compassion towards anyone. Another important trait to keep in mind is possessing a strong level of cultural sensitivity. Living in South Florida exposes you to all walks of life, providing you with a fresh perspective on different cultures. Having compassion and a keen awareness of culture creates a level of respect that is crucial towards yourself and seeing others as human beings, not just a chart number.

 

3. One pearl of wisdom for RD2Bs:

 

Volunteer relating to what you want to practice in. It will only provide you with strong experience and valuable insight towards the demographics of patients you will eventually be treating. Another equally important piece of advice: mentor others and find a mentor in the Dietetics field. Any and all information is helpful and acts as the tools you will need to navigate the path towards becoming a successful RD. To quote Dr. Abel: Always say yes to everything; you never know where it will take you!