Over the course of this internship, I have not only expanded my clinical nutrition skills, but I have personally grown in many other aspects of my life. Specifically, through learning how to network, I have been able to gain self-confidence and see many areas of the nutrition field. If I could provide one piece of advice for fellow and incoming interns, it would be to network as much as you can. I think it’s very important to have a short “elevator pitch” that you can say in person or over email to potential preceptors or employers. This should not only include a brief introduction as to what program you are in, but most importantly should highlight your specific passion and state how you plan on implementing that into your future career. For example, during my food service rotation I was interning at the Titleist Headquarters and decided to reach out to the dietitian on staff for some career advice. I explained to her my passion of working with a multidisciplinary team approach to weight loss and wellness combining nutrition, exercise, and mental health. She then was able to help connect with other practitioners in the area for more advice. After speaking with many practitioners in the medical/health field I landed a phone interview with a clinic in Providence, RI called the Women’s Health Collaborative. This is where I was able to work as a team with a dietitian, physician, exercise physiologist, and a therapist. I ended up learning about their Intuitive Eating program and interned with their weekly group sessions. I learned so much about working as a team and practicing nutrition in a group setting.
This experience alone shaped me as a future nutrition professional in many ways. I wouldn’t have been able to have this opportunity if it were for networking during my food service rotation. Lastly, I want to emphasize that networking will get easier the more you practice at it. Be confident and know that you can find any experience big or small that aligns with your passions if you reach out!