General Membership Meeting - 2021

Presentation Date: Monday, May 3, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. CST

The presentation will include the following:
  • State of the Association 
  • 2021 Election Results 
  • Award Winners | Pathway to Leadership Awards | 50 Year Members 

Student Breakout Session: 

Using Certifications to get your Dream Job

Time: 7:30 p.m. CST

Join our expert certification panel to hear the journey of 6 Certified Dietitians and how certifications helped them obtain their dream job. Each panelist will do a short bio of their journey to their current role and there will be a Q&A for people interested in learning more about specialty certifications.

Panelists:


 

Val Chudzinski MA RD LDN CNSC
Specialty Certification: Certified Nutrition Support Clinician
How long have you been a dietitian? 16 years
Current job title / place of employment: Clinical Nutrition Manager, Inpatient at Northwestern Medicine Northwest Region

What is your advice for someone thinking about getting your certification?

I would recommend getting the ASPEN self assessment tool and begin studying and applying the information to learn to your everyday workday of assessing patients. This will help you engrain the information into your workflow. I also would recommend a minimum 12 weeks to study and spend at least 1 week reviewing each section. Lastly tell people you are taking it! It will help hold you accountable and get excited about your journey to taking your exam! Good luck!


 

Meg Burnham, MS RDN CSSD LDN
Specialty Certification: Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics
How long have you been a dietitian? 15 years
Current job title / place of employment: Nutrition Education Coordinator for Northern Illinois University

What is your advice for someone thinking about getting your certification? To gain hours for the CSSD certification, stay opened minded to opportunities that may expand outside of your normal workload. Unless you happen to be working in a sports setting, you may need to seek out opportunities with local sports and athletics groups and get your name out there.


 

Sarah Buytendorp RDN LDN
Specialty Certification: Certificate in Training in Adult, Adolescent, and Child Weight Management
How long have you been a dietitian? 16 years
Current job title / place of employment: Clinical Nutrition Manager, Inpatient at Northwestern Medicine Northwest Region

What is your advice for someone thinking about getting your certification? This certificate provided confidence that I was doing the right thing and doing the right things well.


 

Jinger Christal RDN LDN CDCES/CDE
Specialty Certification: Certified Diabetes Educator
How long have you been a dietitian? 7.5 years
Current job title / place of employment: Manager of Operations Nutrition and Diabetes Education/NM

What is your advice for someone thinking about getting your certification?

This certification opens up so much opportunity to learn about diabetes technology, medication and patient care.


 

Shelby Hernandez RD LDN CLC
Specialty Certification: Certified Lactation Counselor
How long have you been a dietitian? 2.5 years
Current job title / place of employment: Clinical Dietitian, Northwestern Medicine - Huntley Hospital/Northwest Region

What is your advice for someone thinking about getting your certification?

The more you are able to apply this certification, the more you will grow and retain the information. When considering if you would like to work towards a CLC, think of ways that you would apply it in your current role and in future roles you wish to have. When obtaining the certification - pay attention in class and take notes! The notes will be very helpful in the future as there is a lot of information provided in a short amount of time. With the certification, in a clinical dietitian position, I recommend collaborating with the staff CLCs and forming those interdisciplinary relationships.


 

Lora Anderson RD SCO LDN
Specialty Certification: Board Certified Specialist in Oncology Nutrition
How long have you been a dietitian? 33 years
Current job title / place of employment: Oncology Dietitian / Northwestern Medicine McHenry Hospital Cancer Center

What is your advice for someone thinking about getting your certification? I believe working in the oncology setting requires a skill set that combines a compassionate understanding of the life changing effects of cancer and its treatments that are both physical as well as emotional. If you feel you have a passion for oncology, my advice to you is to know the different treatment modalities, medications and regimens, along with the nutrition impact of each of these. Also being familiar with the non-traditional and unsupported treatments or products so you can be that resource for your patients and colleagues. Strong interviewing skills will help you discover and make recommendations for eating trends, barriers, food modifications and food preparation methods. The certification will set you apart as the specialist for your patients in a world of internet searches and with your colleagues looking for the most up to date evidence based guidelines to assist the patients from diagnosis thru survivorship and end of life.