That Time I Became A Registered Dietitian: Part 2

This is part 2 of how I became a RD.  If you missed part 1 check that out here.  Continuing on…


I did a two week rotation at Children’s Medical Center in Dallas.  I was with two of the outpatient dietitians during this rotation. The first week I was in the GI clinic (the dietitian I was with worked specifically with kids with short bowel syndrome).  We did a lot of calculations because almost all of these kiddos were on enteral or parenteral nutrition support.  The second week I was in the metabolic clinic.  Now this was a really interesting week!  We saw mostly PKU (Phenylketonuria), MSUD (Maple Syrup Urine Disease) and Galactosemia kiddos. Most of this week was spent going over their lab values with them/their parents and adjusting and calculating formulas.  I also unfortunately saw what happens to these kids when they don’t follow their diets (these are inborn errors of metabolism and they are treated with diet). I REALLY enjoyed this rotation. When you work in pediatric nutrition you really get to specialize and I like the idea of that.  I only wish that I could have seen more inpatient stuff during this rotation! 

Long Term Care:

My long term care rotation was two weeks long and I was at Good Samaritan Society for this rotation.  I was honestly kind of dreading this rotation before I started it.  I thought it was going to be very sad and depressing but it wasn’t at all!  The facility that I was at was also a little retirement community with houses and apartments as well as a rehab facility.  I think that this really helped make this rotation enjoyable.  The people that reside at this facility are some of the most spunky and fun loving people.  They have all kinds of activities for them to participate in and they come and go in the dining room that is close to the dietitians office so I got to eavesdrop on lots of very interesting conversations!  These weren’t the people that I was assessing for nutrition related problems, but they really made the facility interesting and made the rotation kind of fun.  It also doesn’t hurt that I kind of love old people. I always say it’s because I was born an old person though. ;)  Anyway, I ended up really enjoying this rotation! 

Community Rotations:

We do several weeks of community rotations.  Everyone does a one week WIC rotation.  The others we get to choose where we go.  My other community rotations were at Cooper Clinic, Food and Fitness (private practice) and Davita Dialysis. 

WIC: I’m going to just be honest and say that this wasn’t my thing.  I don’t want to bash it because a few of my fellow interns absolutely loved it.  But it was my last rotation and the clinic was about 5 minutes from my house so I really can’t complain.  I did learn a few things that I didn’t already know and that’s the point of the internship rotations so I think we could call it a successful rotation!

Cooper Clinic: I was at Cooper Clinic for a one week rotation and I loved it! I had a few projects while I was there including writing this article that was published on their website and a really fun project at the grocery store down the street! I also got to sit in on a lot of nutrition counseling sessions with the dietitians in their medical clinic.  This was a really fun rotation and the campus is beautiful! 

I also spent a week at Food and Fitness. This was with a local private practice dietitian.  Interesting things in this rotation include giving a hydration lecture to a running group and learning how to put together a whole body strength workout.

My last community rotation was at Davita Dialysis and it was a 2 week rotation.  I drove all over creation for this rotation (2 hours one way!) but I enjoyed it! I learned a lot of in-depth information about renal nutrition that I will definitely be able to utilize during my career as a clinical dietitian. I also had a great preceptor so it was a fun rotation!

Enhancement Rotation:

In my program we get a one week rotation of our own choosing.  We can go anywhere we want for this rotation.  I chose Nutrition Support at Parkland Hospital for my enhancement rotation.  I spent the week with their ICU dietitians in a different ICU each day including the burn, surgical, neuro, cardiopulmonary and medical units.  I adored this rotation! This is a really cool/diverse hospital and I loved being here!  I’ve always thought that I wanted to end up working with trauma patients and this rotation definitely confirmed that for me!  I really love working with patients with wounds the most.  I I especially adored my time in the burn unit and could really see myself working with this type of patient.


That’s a wrap!  Well I believe that’s all as far as my internship experience goes!  While I didn’t love every single rotation I tried to make sure to remember that it was a learning experience and that was what I was there for, not to have fun (though some of my rotations were a lot of fun!).  I also tried to be fair in my review of them because even though they may not have been my cup of tea, they are someone else’s career and passion so I would never want to put that down. 

Some of you who might be reading this may be thinking about becoming a registered dietitian or are in the process of applying for your dietetic internship.  I hope that this kind of gives you an idea of what an internship is like (remember that every internship program is slightly different).  If you have any questions about my internship experience or even about internships in general let me know!  My email is I’d be happy to help the best I can!

Also, I know I said this was going to be a 2 part post, but I am going to extend it to a 3 part post because I also want to talk a bit about taking the RD exam.  So stay tuned for part 3!!

See you soon!


That time I became a Registered Dietitian: Part 1

Well hello there!  It has been a VERY long time since I have blogged!  I decided to put it on the back burner while I went through my internship.  It was a very busy time and I really needed to focus just on that!  But guess what?!  I finished my internship.  I took my RD exam annnnndddddd… I PASSED!!!  I’m now officially a Registered Dietitian.


I’ve talked on here before about the path I have taken to get to my Dietetic Internship.  Like when I finished my second bachelor’s degree and got matched to my internship.  Well, here’s my catch up internship post!


So my internship was in total ~16 months. But really I don’t tend to count the first year of the internship since I was just taking graduate courses. I start count when my actual rotations started, so that was about 6 months.  So here is kind of a summary of my internship rotations… I’m going to split this into two parts so that it’s not quite so long of a read.

So this was my very first day of rotations.  Just look at the excitement on my face… so naive hahaha.


Food Service Management:

I did a 6 week food service management rotation (mine was at Medical Center of McKinney) which involved some production and lots of management-y assignments like feasibility studies, business plans, a special catering event that I got to be in charge of (mine was a heart healthy black bean burger that was a HUGE hit!  p.s. I’ll post the recipe here soon!), inservice presentations, time and motion studies and plate waste studies just to name a few things.  I met some really great people during this rotation and I got to cook up a storm in a really big kitchen!

This was the first time I had to be there at 5am for production. Wearing a beautiful blue bonnet. With business casual attire.  Good times.


Why did they let me have a knife at 5 am?


I got to do a few newsletters for the department.  The best part was that I got to include my own recipes in them!

IMG_20140618_144405 (1)

And here’s my beautiful black bean burger from the 4th of July event that I was in charge of! I made every one of the black bean patties by hand!

20140703_113317_Night 20140703_113328_Night 20140703_113205_Night


My clinical rotation was 11 weeks and I was at Baylor Regional Medical Center of Grapevine for this rotation.  This was by far my hardest rotation, but I LOVED it!  My preceptor was tough, but really amazing- I learned so much!  There were a lot of case studies and small assignments to do during this rotation but those were all done outside of my rotation hours.  During my rotation hours I basically got to be a clinical dietitian.  Every day I would get a certain amount of patients that I would go see.  I would assess them and make my nutrition  recommendations based on a variety of factors (disease state, lab values, etc).  I saw a lot of very interesting people during this rotation and oh how I wish I could tell those stories!!!  But ya know… HIPPA.  I saw a little bit of everything in this rotation including trauma/ICU, oncology, kidney disease, diabetes, wounds, cardiology, GI problems, tube feeding, parenteral nutrition, pulmonology and I even got to spend a little time in the NICU (oh how I loved those teeny tiny little NICU babies…. I was awed by their strength and how hard they fight).


Prepping for my BIG case study presentation.  This patient that I had was quite interesting!  And I got to talk a lot about fecal transplants in this presentation. And if you know me but at all, you know I love talking about poo! (I know… there is something wrong with me)

10686756_10100273246628916_4738245238299457447_n IMG_20141104_211107

TPN calculations… and lots of em (especially when I was in Oncology and ICU)!


Also, I love the heart health initiative that the Baylor system has.  The food in their cafe is actually healthy!  And they post nutrition information, so I knew that the baked mac and cheese that I loved so much only had 250 calories in it! (no but for real, this mac and cheese is to die for)



Don’t forget the homework dates at starbucks with fellow interns!


All of my case studies and competencies from this rotation!


And there was lots of this!  Did I mention that this internship was REALLY stressful!!!


Those two rotations were my longest and most time consuming rotations.  And I think that’s where I’m going to leave you for part 1.  I don’t have as many pics from my other rotations, so I’ll sum up the rest of them in part 2!

See you soon!!

Catch up post: graduation!

In my last catch up post I talked a little about going through the matching process for my dietetic internship.  Today’s catch up post is all about graduation!


Up until the week of graduation I had decided that I wasn’t going to walk on graduation day.  Honestly it wasn’t that big of a deal to me since this is my second bachelor’s degree and all.  But that week as I was studying for finals and celebrating with my classmates I just thought… what the hell… I should walk across that stage with my classmates. We’ve worked our asses off and we deserve to be recognized for that.  This degree is extremely grueling, let’s not lie!!


Anyway mainly the reason I changed my mind about walking is because of these three little words.


Magna Cum Laude baby!!!  I decided I still didn’t want to make a huge thing of it though.  I only invited my husband.  It was pretty last minute and graduation was on a Friday morning (seriously TWU that is so lame.)  Plus we only had 6 tickets and I didn’t want to have to pick and choose which family members were going to be able to come and which were going to get left out. 

So I scrambled around trying to find my cap and gown from my last graduation.  I couldn’t find it, so I borrowed one from a friend but it was about two inches too short so I went on a rampage tearing up the house looking for my old cap and gown and ended up finding it!  So all I had to actually buy was the tassel and my honors stole (which was ridiculously expensive for a piece of white fabric!)




The day of our MNT final (the last final for most of us!) a bunch of us decided to go out for drinks after the final!

Day drinking commenced.  Girly drinks were had.  Stories were told.  Lots of cheering and toasting was done. 




(picture credit: Jennifer Stringfellow- thanks girl!!  p.s. classmates if you don’t want to be in these pics on my bloggy just let me know and I’ll either take them down or crop you out!)


So graduation day came and since I have the most awesome luck in the whole world I forgot to grab my husband’s ticket off of the refrigerator before we left the house (our ceremony is ticketed).  And I didn’t notice until we were there at graduation (we live 30 mins away so he couldn’t have gone home and gotten back in time).  I sent him to the viewing area where they were televising the graduation ceremony but I felt like crap because the only person I had invited to my graduation wasn’t going to be there.  And he had scrambled to get someone to cover for him at work that day at the last minute so that he could come.  I was freaking out as we were lining up in alphabetical order to go into the ceremony and one of the girls in line by me was like I have an extra ticket!  Hooray for random kind acts from a stranger!  So Justin got to see me graduate after all!




I have some super sweet hat hair from my graduation cap!!




And since I waited so long to write this blog post, my diploma has actually come in so I may as well show a pic of that too!




Even though I didn’t make a big deal out of graduation I still wanted to celebrate a little.  So I invited a few friends out for Mexican food that night to have some drinks and relax!  We took a few pics but unfortunately they didn’t turn out.  Bad lighting and a camera on a phone don’t tend to bode well.  Ah well, it was still fun!

Bachelor’s done!!  Next up, Master’s and internship and then I’m done and I can have a real job with actual monies!  Can’t wait, being a broke student is starting to get a little old! Smile


Till next time,


catch up post: Matched!!!

I haven’t posted in a very long time (obviously haha!).  I wonder how many posts I’ve started with the phrase It’s been way tong since I posted?  Probably all of them within the last year at least.

My last semester of undergrad has come and gone.  I didn’t blog once this semester, so that should be a pretty good indication of how rough it really was.  Not only did I take the hardest classes that I’ve taken in my academic career, I also worked my butt off to pay for said classes.

But I made it through in one piece and it’s now summer break!!!


I’ve decided to try to do a few catch up posts in an attempt to recap the semester.  So here we go with the first one!


I got matched to a dietetic internship!!!!


This is no easy feat!  Internships are very competitive and the match rate is only 50% nation wide (at my school the match rate is 60%.  We had 28 people match this year (that I know about. Go T-dub!)  The matching process is computerized and it’s a very nerve wracking process!

You submit your application in February and you don’t find out if you matched until April.  And match day is pretty much the worst day ever.  I was completely useless that day at work and I ended up going home early, haha!  That actually ended up working out well because I got home at 5:55 pm and logged in to the matching website and just kept hitting refresh over and over again until the matches came up at 6:00 pm. I heard that some people who tried to log in right at 6 pm couldn’t get in and had to wait until 9 or 10 to find out if they matched or not. YIKES!

I honestly didn’t expect to get matched this round because the match rate is so low.  I had planned to use this round of matching as a kind of practice so I knew how the process went.  I looked at several different internships, a few of them were out of state.  I felt a bit limited in what I could choose to apply for because some of the internships are VERY expensive and there was no way I could pay out of pocket for an internship, no matter how great or prestigious the internship may be.  So I narrowed it down to some that had financial aid attached to them and some that had enough of a stipend to pay for living expenses, while still having an emphasis in the area I want to spend my career as a RD in(Medical Nutrition Therapy- mostly clinical).  In the end I always kept coming back to the TWU internship and I decided to put all my eggs in one basket and only apply for the TWU internship.  They recommend that you apply to at least four, but I really felt that this internship was where I was supposed to be.  And if I hadn’t matched I was 100% okay with my back up plan, which was to start grad school and reapply for internships next year.


But match day came and I got my match!!Picture14






(I still smile when I look at this screen capture from the matching website!)

I am completely over the moon with the choice I made for my internship and I am so honored to have been chosen for one of the spots in this internship (there are only 14 spots).

For most internships you go in, have an orientation, and get started on your internships right away.  They typically last around 10-12 months, depending on the internship.  Mine is just a bit different.  I start in August and I take graduate courses in the fall and spring semesters. In the spring semester I have an internship orientation course that will prepare me to start the actual rotations for my internship.  During this time I will also start work on my thesis (some people wait until after their internship rotations are over to start their thesis and there’s also a coursework option for those that don’t want to do a thesis).  I actually already have a research study lined up with one of my professors and we’re going to start the study in July.  I’m pretty stoked!

Anyway, after my first two semesters in grad school I’ll start my rotations for my internship in June and be finished with the internship and able to sit for my RD exam in December!  After that all that will be left are a few more classes and finishing up my thesis, then I will have my masters in nutrition science along with being a Registered Dietitian.


It’s always been a dream of mine to get my masters degree.  The day I got this letter in the mail I was almost as excited about this as I was about my match for my DI!














I’m so very excited to start the next portion of my journey toward becoming a registered dietitian and also fulfilling my dream of earning a masters degree.  Tune in come fall as I start this wild ride! Smile


Oh hey it’s 2013!

Oh hey! Remember me?? I used to blog a lot.

And then last semester happened.

It was a rough semester.

My toughest semester yet in terms of how difficult the classes were.  I had something to prove to myself and I proved it!

Look at these grades…  (I blacked out my student ID info. Can’t be too careful!)



4.0 baby!!  I feel a great sense of accomplishment for it but I’m not sure it was worth the sheer amount of time I spent studying. Every single day and night.  I had no time to go out with friends (if I still have any left after blowing them off all semester that is).  I also had to work to pay for tuition this semester because I didn’t get any financial aid.  So it was pretty much work study work study work study.  It was definitely a miserable exhausting semester and I really need to work on balance a bit more next semester.  But I did prove to myself that I could keep going even when I was ready to give up because it was something that was very important to me.


I do have to say that I found my passion this semester though.  I absolutely adored my Medical Nutrition Therapy class!  I knew I wanted to be a RD but it wasn’t until this semester that I knew 100% that I wanted to be a clinical RD. I love love love it!  I’m really excited about my internship (wherever/whenever that may be.  It’s still up in the air until April!) and my first real job as a RD. I can’t wait!!


More balance this year is my main goal.  I definitely need to work on my “all or nothing” mentality a bit more.  Less worrying about grades, more blogging, more cooking, and more friends.


Here’s to 2013! DCFB33FA1087C7ABE7ECAC74BDFF501E