Highlighting the Idaho Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 2017 Idaho State University Outstanding Dietetic Student Award Winners

The purpose of the Outstanding Dietetics Student Award program is to recognize the emerging leadership and achievement of students in ACEND-accredited and approved dietetics education programs and encourage their participation in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Idaho State University selected three students for this award: one from the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD), one from the Dietetic Internship in Pocatello, and one from the Dietetic Internship in Meridian. Faculty, preceptors, and students assisted with the selection.

All students were recognized at the Annual Meeting, April 20th – 21st, 2017

The Idaho Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics awards each ODSA a one-year membership in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Criteria

  • Member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Students must be members by January 1st of the year in which they would receive the award. Student enrolled in ACEND-accredited dietetics education program (CP, DI, DPD, DT).
  • Demonstrated academic achievement as documented by letters from program faculty or preceptor.
  • Demonstrated leadership and professional potential; e.g., honors, student dietetic association activities, community service activities, etc.

Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)

Stephanie Fisher 

 

Stephanie Fisher

How did you become interested in nutrition?

I have always wanted to help people, and I love food. Once I learned that my two passions could be combined, that’s when I knew I wanted to become a dietitian.

What has been your favorite experience from your dietetic program so far?

I have really enjoyed the hands-on experiences that we were offered at Idaho State University. We have been lucky to go in large kitchens and work with different pieces of equipment and apply the information we learned in class to real life situations. I also enjoyed being able to go to the hospital and speak with the patients. That opportunity has helped me develop my motivational interviewing skills that I will need in the future.

Once you become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, what kind of work would you like to do?

At this point, I would like to become either a Diabetes Educator or a renal dietitian. I look forward to the internship to see which area I would rather be in each day.

What words of wisdom would you share with students who are interested in pursuing Dietetics?

I would tell people to go out and volunteer in the community. Consider different programs, such as Cooking Matters or Benny’s Pantry, to see if it is rewarding and enjoyable for them. Improving the community and helping others is a large part of dietetics, so they need to make sure it is something they enjoy before dedicating their time to a dietetic program.

Dietetic Internship in Pocatello

Andrea Conley

Andrea

How did you become interested in nutrition?

I got interested in Nutrition after switching my major 2 times and struggling to find something that felt right. I always knew that I wanted to be able to help others but I was never sure how I would achieve this goal. After completing my second year of generals and switching majors multiple times, I took a nutrition class at Boise State University and fell in love. I had a great professor who was at the time a pediatric dietitian in Boise who really helped to spark my interest. After that class I knew that I wanted to be a registered dietitian. I applied to Idaho State University and moved to Pocatello the next fall to finish my degree.

What has been your favorite experience from your dietetic program so far?

My favorite experience during my dietetic program and internship has been all the work I’ve got to do with the community such as; health fairs and YEAH! (Youth engaged in healthy activities) pizza night where we made healthy pizzas with the kids in the class. It is so fun and rewarding to get out there and get involved with the community.

Once you become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, what kind of work would you like to do?

Once I become a dietitian I would like to start in a clinical setting while working towards my CDE and possibly work with children and diabetes prevention programs.

What words of wisdom would you share with students who are interested in pursuing Dietetics?

“Stop doubting yourself, work hard, and make it happen”- Author unknown. I believe this quote really sums up what it takes to succeed in anything you pursue.  It’s a lot of hard work but it’s possible and so worth it! You just have to remember that everyone around you, your professors and preceptors are there for you and want you to succeed.

Dietetic Internship in Meridian 

Alyssa Lynott

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

How did you become interested in nutrition?

I always like to joke around that dietetics found me. When I first started in my undergrad program at Idaho State University, I did not know much about nutrition or the field of dietetics.  However, as I went further in the coursework and developed an idea of what this field could mean for me as a professional, I fell in love! It took some time for me to decide my career path, but I am so grateful that it brought me here. 

What has been your favorite experience from your dietetic program and/or internship so far?

My favorite part of the internship has been working with the preceptors. I never truly realized just how important they are to the learning process until this internship. Throughout the year, I have met some of the most amazing and motivated dietetic professionals. They each have had an integral part in helping me grow as a dietitian; by offering constructive criticism and various learning experiences. Developing personal relationships, as well as working alongside each preceptor, has been the best part of this crazy year. I would not be at this level without their support and kindness. Knowing their importance to education, I am thrilled to enter the workforce and become a preceptor to support the next generations of dietitians!

Once you become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, what kind of work would you like to do?

This is such a tough question to answer. I have found that I love all the roles dietitians can play in various aspects of a community. However, I felt the strongest connection with outpatient counseling. I felt that I could really make an impact on someone’s life by using motivational interviewing, but also felt that I was actively learning about different cultures and lifestyles. In this area of work I felt that I could make a connection with clients and guide them to a place where they could make lifestyle changes to better their health. I really enjoyed working in this setting, but I think each area of dietetics offers unique and exciting experiences. 

What words of wisdom would you share with students who are interested in pursuing Dietetics?

My advice would be to embrace being out of your comfort zone. There were moments in the internship where I felt unprepared for situations, mainly due to little experience in a majority of the areas. These moments, though terrifying at the time, are what I am most grateful for. I often found in these challenging situations that you have the knowledge tucked away in the corners of your brain; you just did not know it! My advice would be to always embrace new experiences while wearing your biggest smile and positive attitude; it truly is the best way to learn. 

 

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