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Arthritis Diet and Exercises

Dietetic Internship Application – Personal Statement Part 2

hi everyone we’re back to continue our
conversation about the personal statement and address the question why
do you want to enter the Dietetics profession one thing I did forget to mention in my
first recording that I’ll say now it’s not directly related to that question is
that it is important if you apply to more than one program that you should
individualize your personal statements for each program my suggestion is to
start with the program that you absolutely love the most it’s your top
choice you’re number one that one will be the easiest to write then follow with
your other programs you’ll find that the answers to most of the questions can
probably be the same with one exception usually the question that asks what
other information do you consider important for the selection decision
that’s the one where it’s a good opportunity to individualize for
specific programs so depending on what things certain programs might consider
there might be other places in your personal statement where you would want
to emphasize a specific strength or ability or experience because you know
that that particular program values it the ladies in the picture with me are
not all but many of our applicants last year on match day we decided to that
many of them wanted to be together with their friends to get their match and so
we met at a local winery and shared the matching experience and so that was very
special day so the question the first question that is presented in DICAS
is why do you want to enter the Dietetics profession and many applicants
actually start their personal statement with answering this question it seems to
just be a natural introduction in fact I would say most applicants start by
answering this question however there is no expectation there is no requirement
that you answer the questions in the order in which they were given and in
fact starting differently by answering a different question or perhaps with a
story that’s not directly related to this might actually bring favorable or
positive attention to your application so you have to do what seems right to
you and an accurate expression of your personality but typically I would say
this is the question that’s the easiest to answer first it’s a good introduction remembering that most other parts of the
application are all very similar as I said before we’ve all taken similar
classes you’ve had similar kinds of work experience many of you have very good
grades recognizing there are variations in academic performance
but still this is a place where your motivation your interest is likely to be
unique from others and so you want to give some careful thought to that and go
definitely go beyond I want to work in a profession that helps people because
oftentimes that is what we want but think a little deeper when you come to
express it you can express this from a very personal perspective I have had
applicants that have had a specific personal medical diagnosis that
benefited from nutrition therapy several of our students from at Cal Poly have
had type 1 diabetes that oftentimes will lead them to be interested in a career
in Dietetics we’ve had a few with cancer we’ve had a number with celiac disease
food allergies obesity oftentimes there on the other side of obesity they’ve
lost a lot of weight and are excited with the healthful approach that they
had to losing weight and so they’re eager to work in that field of practice
and we’ve had a number of graduates have suffered from or experienced
disordered eating and they’ve recovered from that thanks to an effective
treatment program and that also has inspired them to want to continue on in
Dietetics additionally beyond and outside of
yourself someone close to you may have experienced a personal medical diagnosis
that benefited from or could have benefited from nutrition therapy I’ve
heard some times from my students that they had a grandparent with chronic
obstructive pulmonary disease or a form of cancer that seemed to waste away and
they felt that had there been a nutrition intervention it might have
improved the quality of their life or the outcome of their treatment this
happens to be my mother on the Left my mother-in-law on the right both had
disorders and diseases that benefited from nutritional interventions diabetes
hypertension and of course they were much older but still those are things
that can have an impact on you you may know someone with chronic kidney disease
that is on dialysis or that is facing a transplant those are things that
definitely have a place with in a relationship with nutrition therapy you
may know people with severe food allergies severe to the point where they
have to carry an EpiPen and your ability to instruct them or their ability to
receive instruction is critically important
obesity can come into play here as well I’ve had a number of students who have
expressed great concern about one or the other of their parents or grandparents
or even a sibling that struggles with obesity and that has inspired them and
they may have seen someone with an eating disorder they may not have it
themself but they may have a sibling or a roommate that struggles with
disordered eating and that may have inspired them there their
desire to help others that have had similar situations in addition so I included this picture
happens to be my internship cohort and I’m going to tell a little story about
that as I go on in this slide additionally from a personal perspective
you may have had some other personal experience positive or negative that may
be pushing you towards a career in Dietetics you may have a mom or a dad or
another close relative that’s a dietitian and in fact that’s
the case in this picture the lady in this picture that’s on seated on the
right with the arrow pointing to her feet was a classmate of mine in my
internship I’m the one standing with the arrow pointing to my head years after she became a dietitian her
daughter showed up in one of my classes and I didn’t realize that she was coming
to Cal Poly and as soon as I heard her name I approached her after class and
asked if her mother was this person and she said yes and she said her mom’s
positive influence had inspired her to become a dietitian so it could be that
you might have had either a positive or sometimes a negative influence with a
coach as an athlete sometimes coaches give out wonderful accurate scientific
based nutrition advice and sometimes they don’t and sometimes that will
inspire you to bring changes to that particular industry the same could be
true if you were a dancer. Dance instructors sometimes gave very solid
nutrition advice and other times they might rely on things that were more
faddish you might have seen Ellie Krieger on the Food Network she’s a very
popular media savvy well-known registered dietitian who has had a very
positive influence on many and sometimes just seeing her in that area of practice
excites you and inspires you that you’d like to do something like she’s
doing you might follow an RD blogger and enjoy the idea of writing about
nutrition at some point in the future and you may have even seen something in
the popular press in a magazine and I when I first wrote that was thinking of
something positive but you maybe may have seen all of the fad diets that are
out there and you realize those are not healthy those are not sustainable and
you would love to be a presence in the media world to present healthier
evidence-based approaches to life and health so any of those things might also
be personal inspirations that you would want to write about in this part of your
personal statement you may also you may have had none of those personal
experiences and yet you may have through school through others that you know you
may have developed a professional interest in some particular area of
practice you might be excited and enthusiastic about promoting human
lactation or breastfeeding you might have great concern for child obesity and
where that’s going here in the United States you may have a again a great
concern for people who are hungry and food insecure and want to make a
difference in the lives of people that may not have had the same access to food
that you’ve had you might be interested in the farm to table movement you love
whole foods you love the idea that students and children in schools can see
food that comes from local farms and that that would inspire them to eat
fruits and vegetables that are locally grown and tie that in with a nutrition
program at a school you may be excited about the idea of wellness and
preventive health you’d rather not treat people when they’re sick you would
rather work with people while they’re still well to bring changes to their
lives you may be interested in promoting a
plant-based or a Mediterranean lifestyle that also can be an effective motivation
to lead you into a profession in Dietetics or as I said on the previous
slide you may be very concerned and interested in the idea of evidence-based
nutrition you’ve seen enough about fad diets and movie stars and celebrities
that promote extreme approaches to health or weight loss or weight
maintenance and you’d like to bring the science to the table and yet make it
interesting and understandable you may have concerns related to malnutrition
and malnutrition occurs oftentimes in citizens of the United States Amer
people who live in America but have chronic diseases and don’t have access
to all of the food that they would need for a healthy lifestyle you’ll learn or
you have learned in your clinical classes about the malnutrition that can
occur in acute care hospitals that may inspire you or you may be concerned
about the malnutrition that occurs on a more global scale in countries and
regions that are severely impoverished with limited access to a variety of
foods and that may be inspiring you and there could be so many others but those
are the ones that came to mind as I was thinking about these slides so there
could be many many other professional goals that inspire you and lead you into
the profession of Dietetics so think about all of that as I said
before don’t worry about the word count at this point brainstorm brain dump
however you want to think about it but get things get your thoughts out get
them written on paper add them to an electronic file you could even do voice
memos if it’s easier for you to speak about it anyway that works for you get
your ideas out there so that you don’t forget you can trim you can edit you can
refine them later just start thinking about it get started with the process
don’t be intimidated by it in the next video we’ll move on to the next question
I want to say one more thing about the idea of disordered eating if you
personally have a history of disordered eating my advice is don’t linger or say
too much in your personal statement about the struggle focus on the RD or RDN that inspired you and focus on your current healthy relationship with food
and how you manage stress if you talk too much about the disorder it may lead
the program director to think that it’s still a struggle for you and because of
the stresses in an internship while you technically can’t be discriminated
against because you have an eating disorder it could be again something
that might cause your application to be scored lower and you might never know
that that was why and so it’s best to focus on the healthy relationship with
food that you have now if that’s something that was mentioned as a part
of your history that’s all I’m going to say about that
question I’m going to move on to the next set of slides shortly and we will
be back in touch thank you

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