Hey, everyone! My name is Kelsey Fritz, and I am a Sodexo dietetic intern at the Baltimore/Washington DC Campus with a concentration in wellness. I am also doing the combined master’s program in dietetics through the University of Rhode Island. I am currently finishing up my food service management rotation at the University of Maryland Prince George’s Hospital Center and only have about one week left! The University of Maryland health system includes multiple affiliate facilities, so while Prince George’s is my main site, I also had the opportunity to spend some time at Laurel Regional Hospital. Prior to starting the internship, I didn’t have much experience in the kitchen, so I loved that I had the chance to work in two different kitchens and learn the ins and outs of both. From participating in counting and ordering inventory to working with the chef in the production area and then helping out on the retail side, I have learned so much about the amount of hard work that goes into the different areas of food service on a daily basis.
One experience that I really enjoyed was participating in a health fair with the chef at Prince George’s Hospital. We prepared smoked salmon spring rolls and did a quick demonstration on how to prepare this recipe. To go along with our demo, I created a handout that focused on the benefits of consuming 8 oz. per week of salmon and other fatty fish such as herring and trout. Salmon is an anti-inflammatory food and is one of the richest sources of omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA. In my handout, I explained the importance of including omega-3s in the diet and how they have been shown to help reduce inflammation in the body, support brain health, and may protect against certain diseases such as cancer and heart disease. I explained the three different types of omega-3s and provided some vegetarian sources as well. While giving out samples, I was able to speak to various individuals, educate them about anti-inflammatory eating, and help them come up with ways to incorporate omega-3s in their diets. I answered questions and got to meet so many employees throughout the hospital. I loved being able to take some of my foodservice skills that I learned and utilize them in an educational setting like this!