I have ended up loving nutrition support, which includes calculating nutritional needs and then calculating enteral or parenteral nutrition for patients in a variety of disease states and severity of illness. When I calculate nutrition support, I feel like I have really solved a true problem and am making an immediate impact on care for the patient. ICU rounds have become one of my favorite parts of the day because it is where I feel most part of the team. However, I also found out I really struggle emotionally with patient family members when the situation is grave. The Sodexo internship has been so supportive and allowed me to change my concentration because of this to leadership! This will be the rotation I start in just a few weeks. In my leadership concentration, I will be given the opportunity to work in behavioral health, outpatient cancer treatment, wellness in a corporate setting, and dialysis patients.
Finally, as unfortunate as the situation is, it has also been really interesting and unique to see the precautions and how a hospital functions in a pandemic. We are currently placing anyone with a respiratory infection on droplet isolation. On the nutrition/food service side of things in the hospital, we are using paper trays for anyone suspected of COVID-19. The nutrition services general manager also has made sure to have a standardized set of food items on site for emergency.
Now, to all future interns, the best advice I can give you is to just show up and do your best to be open to learning anything and everything. There are going to be days that you feel amazing, and days that you feel defeated. There will be people you love, and people you struggle with. Try to take everything as a learning experience that you can grow from to be the best dietitian you can be for your future patients. Always remember, you know more than you think you do, and you are going to be amazing!