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Dietetic Internship Program

Intern Testimonials

“Serving as a Dietetic Intern at Emory University Hospital fostered one of my most valuable years of education I have received to date. Emory’s learning environment allowed me to expand both my passion and my knowledge for the field of nutrition. This has not only served as a building block, adding onto my prior education from Clemson University, but also offered a vast support system to ensure quality patient care. From clinical, food service and community, this internship provided every opportunity the dietetic field has to offer. Through working with interdisciplinary teams and counseling patients, I learned what it means to be a leader, which in turn, bolstered my confidence in my ability as a dietitian. By having the opportunity to begin my healthcare career at one of the best teaching hospitals in the nation, I was consistently exposed to challenging patients and situations. These opportunities immensely developed my critical thinking skills as well as my ability to take initiative in problem solving as a clinician. The programs’ incredible dedication to teaching and excellence work in combination to provide an outstanding program. Upon entering my internship with Emory, my main goal was to leave feeling confident in my ability to be a dietitian; having successfully completed both my internship and the CDR exam, I am able to thank Emory for helping me not only achieve my goals, but for giving me an extraordinary experience and a skill set to carry with me forever.”  

Elena Higgins, 2020


“Emory University Hospital’s Dietetic Internship found the balance between a structured and truly enjoyable experience. From the rigor of the program, to the extensive network it provides, Emory has helped in shaping me into the dietitian I had always hoped to be. I cannot put into words the value this internship provided me with. From the endless support and encouragement of  preceptors and peers, to the moments I was pushed out of my comfort zone, this internship allowed me to find both personal growth and confidence. After graduating, I felt extremely prepared to enter the workforce and utilize the medical nutrition therapy knowledge I had gained in a professional setting. I will be forever grateful for the tools and relationships Emory provided me with.” 

Allison Sykora, 2020


“Emory’s Dietetic Internship program has a reputation for being a rigorous and challenging program at a top teaching hospital. Knowing that Emory would challenge me and provide a great education made it my top choice program. It was important to me to get hands on learning and I believe Emory did a great job with this. Working individually with preceptors is something I greatly appreciated because it allowed me to focus on my own learning in the rotations. The one to one precepting was one of the features that drew me to Emory. Throughout the internship I received great feedback from preceptors on both what I was doing well and what I could work on improving. This was crucial to my learning as it allowed me to not only build my knowledge, but also build my confidence as a practitioner.  The rotations were extremely challenging, but the preceptors were supportive throughout it all and helped guide me through my rotations. After completing my internship, I felt confident in my abilities as a future dietitian and am grateful for the knowledge and skills Emory provided me. I do not think I would be the dietitian that I am today without the Emory program!”   

Isabel Alvarez, 2020


“Applying to Emory was, by far, one of the best undergraduate decisions I ever made! Emory was attractive because of its well-known reputation of being a teaching hospital, training medical professionals from around the country and even world. I knew Emory would offer me an environment where I could learn from mistakes made and gain confidence simultaneously. I was pleased to learn that the Dietetics curriculum at Emory afforded me the opportunity to work one-on-one with registered dietitians who would help further my education. Rotations within the program were tailored to each interns’ personal interests which ranged from clinical to critical care, sports nutrition, community & school nutrition, foodservice, and even eating disorders to name a few. My completion of this internship has allowed me to become a competent entry-level registered dietitian who is currently working in the clinical setting. I believe I have not only gained life-long friendships with fellow colleagues in the internship, but also a solid network of intelligent, devoted dietitians who truly valued my learning experience and success as a dietitian. I believe the collegial atmosphere of this internship was largely due to our coordinator, Michelle Gooden. I always appreciated the coordinator’s open-door policy which allowed for opportunities to ask questions related to dietetics or even personal life. Even though I am a post-graduate of this internship, I know that open-door policy still applies. If you value training in an environment which offers unique one-on-one learning experiences with registered dietitians, rotations geared specifically to your interests, and faculty who are committed to not only being educators but also mentors, I highly recommend the Emory Dietetics Internship!”   

Abbie Borem, 2020


 “Emory's dietetic internship not only met my expectations, it exceeded them. If you are pursuing a rigorous, individualized and meaningful learning experience, then Emory's program is for you. While it is clinically-focused, I personally believe that both the hard and soft skills that you will acquire and hone during your time with Emory will prepare you to practice in a variety of settings. During my time in this program, I was met with individualized learning experiences made possible by the 1:1 intern to preceptor ratio, knowledgeable preceptors who were dedicated to my success and a dynamic learning environment as Emory is a teaching hospital. While less tangible in comparison to the technical skills I acquired, one of the most meaningful parts of my time in this program was the relationships that I made with both my fellow interns (now colleagues) and preceptors. I was molded both professionally and personally into the individual that I am today, and I will be forever grateful for my time with Emory.” 

Allie Cowles, 2020


"Emory was my first choice dietetic internship based on the program rigor, reputation as a renowned teaching hospital, and tireless dedication of the preceptors. While I enjoyed all of my rotations, two unique experiences worth mentioning were my elective rotations, which I completed in sports nutrition and sustainability, respectively. I rotated at University of Georgia for sports nutrition, and I can say with confidence that I wouldn’t have received a better rotation in this area at any other location in Georgia. This rotation provided a critical understanding of sports nutrition operations and the role of a sports dietitian at one of the largest Division 1 SEC schools in the country, leaving me with a solid background in sports nutrition at the collegiate level. My second elective rotation was in sustainability, which I completed at the USDA. While there, I worked in partnership with the dietitians at Atlanta Public Schools to implement a switch from Styrofoam to compostable lunch trays across all 81 schools in the district. Previous interns had never rotated with the USDA, so this rotation had to be created to accommodate my interest, which exemplifies Emory’s dedication to forming strong external partnerships that provide the best opportunities for their interns. I could not be happier to have completed my internship at Emory, and I feel fully prepared to take the RD exam and begin my career in dietetics!" 

Katie Best, 2019


“Completing my dietetic internship at Emory provided me with the knowledge, critical thinking skills and confidence to be the best dietitian I could possibly be. I applied to Emory because of its stellar reputation and the variety of clinical rotations it offered. I entered with little clinical experience aside from what I learned in undergrad and left with the ability to provide nutrition care to patients of the highest acuity. I can say with total confidence that each day I left the building with a greater breadth of knowledge than when I entered it. I won’t say everyday was easy, but each day was a fresh opportunity to grow as a person and an intern. The internship fostered friendships and special bonds with the other interns that were pivotal to success. Staff experience provided a particularly unique opportunity to work independently with other healthcare providers. It was my honor and pleasure to match to Emory University Hospital and I will always look back fondly on my time as an intern.” 

Danielle Fanelle, 2019


“Coming from outside of Georgia, Emory’s reputation as a phenomenal teaching hospital with high acuity patients drew me to apply. During the program’s open house, it became clear to me that Emory was a place where interns were pushed to work hard and think critically, while still feeling supported by passionate and engaged dietitians.

During the first few days of the internship, I again felt this same feeling. All of the preceptors in the clinical, community, and food service rotations are incredibly passionate about their work, and make that clear from day one of the program. Each preceptor I had the pleasure of working with during my time at Emory’s dietetic internship pushed me to think critically about my decisions, while constantly providing encouragement and constructive feedback. The program offered a wide variety of experiences in all areas of dietetic practice and included two elective rotations, which helped me further explore my passions. I had the incredible opportunity to complete an elective rotation with Marcus Institute, a feeding program for children with autism. This program allowed me to get an insight into the role of a Registered Dietitian in a pediatric setting, and provided me with the opportunity to make valuable contacts in this area. I also had an opportunity to complete an elective rotation in neurocritical care, where I gained further experience in using evidence-based guidelines to care for individuals in the ICU.  Upon graduating the internship, I am amazed at the skills that I have developed over this short time and feel completely prepared to enter the workforce as an entry-level dietitian.” 

Samantha Klig, 2019


“I applied to the Emory Dietetic Internship Program because of their reputation for high acuity medical cases and the prestige associated with their research and practice. As a longtime resident of Atlanta, I knew that training here would not only be grueling but also extremely rewarding and a strong boost to my success. I expected a challenge from a place like Emory and I was not disappointed. When we got started, some of the first things they told us included that the program would be over before we knew it, that we would cry and question ourselves, and that we would accomplish and learn more in the next nine months than we could imagine. They were right. In the moment, the program felt boundless and vast with the curriculum challenging us in ways that were both invigorating and overwhelming. Luckily, the program’s strong support and guidance was more than enough to navigate us through.

Initially, after graduation, I didn’t realize how much the program had taught me; it all seemed to have gone by so quickly. It wasn’t until studying for the RD exam that I noticed review points were echoes of scenarios I had been in at the hospital, and that practice questions were reminiscent of instruction I had received from preceptors. I see now that everything I was exposed prepared me to, not only pass the RD exam (which I did on the first try!) but, practice competently.  I have been exposed to some of the most complicated medical scenarios and have a firm understanding of how to provide medical nutrition therapy because of my training at Emory. Feeling overwhelmed and humbled at times through the program is natural; just trust that the experience and work you are putting in will pay off.” 

Brittany Summerlin 2018


"I feel that Emory’s Dietetic Internship program is setting a whole new standard in the field of nutrition and dietetics.  From its well-known focus in clinical nutrition inside a world-renowned teaching hospital, to the various community settings in partnership with Emory (including some of my favorites in WIC and UGA’s sports nutrition department), to working with arguably the most sustainable and progressive hospital food service operation in the southeastern US, the whole experience provides a universe of exploration and virtually unlimited learning opportunities.  Emory’s intellectual rigor in evidence-based practices is the cornerstone that guides the program, and every preceptor in all the rotations instructs with those same lofty standards to create a once-in-a-lifetime experience that is both challenging and incredibly rewarding.  In my opinion, this is the future of nutrition education - the kind that will bring the profession of nutrition to the forefront of our healthcare industry as it truly deserves.

I came away with a deep sense of gratitude for the privilege of being there, serving those in need while learning the ways of nutritional healing.  In the process I learned a lot about myself that I hadn’t known before - the experience truly changed me for the better, and as a result I feel I am well prepared to tackle the challenges that face us all in our global quest for improved health and well-being.  Thank you Lynne, thank you so very much Michelle, and thanks to everyone who selflessly dedicated their time and efforts to make this program the invaluable experience that it was.  Bravo!" 

Ricardo Boye, 2018


“I remember having butterflies and feeling jittery at the thought of becoming a dietetic intern. Transitioning from the comfort and safety of being a student to the reality of training to become a certified healthcare professional seemed intimidating. To my surprise, after the first few days of the internship, I found myself seamlessly easing into my newfound role and thoroughly immersing myself into a program I had always dreamed of attending. I credit that to Michelle, Lynne, and each and every one of our preceptors who welcomed us on that hot summer day with open arms and a unique eagerness to share their knowledge. I am particularly appreciative of the skills development classes we took on the first few weeks, as they reinforced my knowledge in nutrition and prepared me to excel in all of my rotations.

Having finished the program, I can now say with certainty that Emory allowed me to develop the skill set needed to succeed as an entry-level dietitian. The wide variety of experiences I had this past year, from clinical and community, to food service and private practice, gave me the ability and confidence to work in any field within dietetics, thereby broadening my career horizons. It has been nothing but an honor, privilege, and blessing to have been part of the Emory Healthcare family and I will be forever grateful to my preceptors for making my experience enriching, educational, and one I will never forget.” 

Denisse Porras, 2017


“Admission to any dietetic internship is a massive accomplishment. Admission to Emory’s dietetic internship, for me, is still one of the greatest honors of my life. From the moment I discovered the program online, I knew there was a uniqueness about them. And as I attended informational events and spoke with current interns, that notion was confirmed. Emory is unique, and in the best way possible. 

For each of the 8 fortunate interns, schedules are hand-crafted, assignments are tediously structured, and no time is wasted. Honestly, all I knew about a dietetic internship was that it had to be done in order to sit for the board exam. What I realized quickly is that it’s a process- a process of maturing our dry nutrition dogma into a higher understanding of food and how it affects people and communities on every level and corridor of life. The challenge to obtain a grander understanding of how nutrition relates to human nature was posed daily, and I am forever grateful to every preceptor who played a part in shaping my clinical judgment. In the end, every bit of this special process led to me passing the RD exam and obtaining a career I love as a community dietitian.” 

Kathryn Shubert, 2016


“The Emory Dietetic Internship definitely exceeded my expectations about the training process of becoming a registered dietitian.  During my last couple of rotations, I truly felt confident in my ability to care for patients independently and on the level of an entry-level dietitian. When I think about the way I ended my internship compared to the way I began my internship, timid and terrified, I realized that my improvement could be credited to the amazing coordinator Michelle, the wonderful director Lynne, and all the dedicated preceptors.  Every single leader was prepared, knowledgeable, and patient with the other interns and me.  They took the time to explain important concepts and ensure that we had a deep understanding of every piece of knowledge and practice required for dietitians.  The preceptors also did everything they could to support what we wanted to get out of the internship.  If there was a special request for a rotation that had not been completed by an intern in the past, the internship leadership pulled the necessary strings to make that dream rotation a reality.  Along with the preceptors, the different rotations provided unique experiences with patients with numerous different medical, nutritional, and financial issues.  From patients post bariatric surgery requiring less calories to patients with food insecurity needing more nutrient dense foods, this internship gave me many experiences that have prepared me to see a wide range of patients in the future.  It was an honor and a blessing to have been chosen as an Emory dietetic intern.” 

Brittany Lenners, 2016


“The Emory Dietetic Internship prepared me for a career as a dietitian in ways I could not have possibly anticipated. My clinical and technical skills were carefully fostered, but my leadership and managerial skills were far from neglected. I was pushed and encouraged to hold my practices to the highest standard and I know that I came out a stronger, more confident and more competent dietitian because of it. The one-on-one preceptor to intern ratio was something that I did not know was so unique and incredible about this program until after we had begun. Only then did I realize how lucky I was to have received such specialized, personal and intentional precepting. The seven other interns turned out to be some of my closest friends during the internship, and my preceptors became some of the best instructors most supportive professional colleagues I may ever have. I will be forever grateful for my time at Emory and to the people there who made it professionally life-changing.”  

Savannah King Thaler, 2015


"Before starting the internship, I was aware of Emory's impressive reputation, and I knew that it was a teaching hospital. However, I didn't fully grasp what that meant until I was one of Emory's interns. The preceptors are dedicated not only to the program, but also to each intern. They constantly encouraged me to engage with other practitioners to gain a more well-rounded view of quality patient care. The program director, coordinator and preceptors have invested significant time in developing meaningful assignments, so that each intern emerges from the program as the best dietitian he or she can be. Although the workload was rigorous, Emory's supportive network of dietitians was always there for encouragement and guidance when needed. I am so grateful to Emory for developing my competence, building my confidence, and preparing me to enter the competitive field of dietetics."

Frances Ennis, 2014


"I was compelled to apply to the dietetic internship at Emory because of its reputation as a top-rated patient care facility and teaching hospital. The learning environment at Emory is fast-paced, demanding and rewarding! From day one of the internship you are immersed in a variety of clinical, community, and food service experiences and are challenged each day. I appreciated having an intern class of eight, which allowed for highly personalized feedback from preceptors. In addition to this, I was able to network with dietetic professionals by participating in community events and lectures on the latest trends and research in nutrition. As a result, I met my preceptor and chose an elective rotation in school nutrition. Shortly after graduating, I received an offer for a position in the same district and now work as a nutrition training manager. Thanks to Emory for giving me the tools and confidence to start a great career!"

Adrienne Holloway, 2014


"The Emory Dietetic Internship was an incredible learning experience. The internship was challenging, interactive, and comprehensive, all thanks to the amazing staff of dietitians who serve as preceptors at Emory. The preceptors are incredibly knowledgeable, and more importantly, are excited to share their expertise with the interns they teach. The Emory staff truly goes above and beyond to ensure that each intern has the optimal learning environment and helps to individualize the internship experience based on your personal interests within the field of dietetics. While the internship has a strong clinical focus, there are ample opportunities in food service and community nutrition, and Emory has an extensive network of Atlanta Dietitians to provide a variety of choices for elective rotations. I truly enjoyed the internship and am thankful to have been matched with Emory! After I completed the internship, I passed the RD exam within a month and began working as a Registered Dietitian shortly after that. I highly recommend this program to all aspiring dietitians!"

Jennifer Popadiuk, 2012


"Emory was my first choice for the dietetic internship based on it being highly-rated and affiliated with a top-notch university and teaching hospital. So when I got matched to the Emory DI, I was super happy! Everyone I encountered during the internship was phenomenal. The preceptors were so patient with me as I learned the ropes of cardiology, how to enter clinical notes in the patients' electronic medical records, and how to help those in the community through our off-site rotations, just to name a few of the MANY opportunities I was given over the course of my internship. I emerged from the internship ready to take on the RD exam (which I passed on the first try!) and then ready to start my own private practice. I met so many wonderful mentors who showed me the ropes that I had the confidence to follow my dream of being a dietitian nutritionist. Thank you Emory for an incredible experience!"

Caitlin Russell, 2012


"The opportunity to start one's healthcare career at one of the best teaching hospitals in the nation is an opportunity that is beyond comparison. With two major metro-area hospitals offering a variety of specialties and a diverse patient population between them, Emory offers an exceptional clinical nutrition experience. Further, relationships with other hospitals, clinics, and community organizations throughout the Atlanta area give interns the opportunity to experience the profession from all angles and truly identify their calling in the world of dietetics. This internship program graduates young men and women who are fully prepared to enter the workforce and who have gained the knowledge, experience, and support to succeed. I am honored to be one among the many outstanding graduates of Emory Hospitals' dietetic internship program. I will forever appreciate the guidance I received and cherish the relationships I developed through this program."

Shannon Brockman, 2011


"Emory Hospitals Dietetic Internship greatly surpassed my expectations. The environment at Emory is a learning environment- all of the preceptors are intelligent, caring, and very understanding. I was also constantly interacting with all members of the healthcare team. These interactions helped build my confidence and knowledge of dietetics and other pertinent information needed to best care for the patient. While Emory's internship is clinically based, the community and food service rotations were also excellent. I feel extremely prepared to practice as a registered dietitian and will forever value my experience at Emory!"

Laryssa Myers, 2011


"Out of all the possible outcomes of the DI matching process, I am so thankful that I was matched at Emory! The exposure is extensive, the rotations are intensive, and the staff is unbeatable. After I completed the program, I was able to pass my exam and get a job within a month. I emerged with a lengthy list of colleagues (once preceptors) that have offered guidance and encouragement on more than one occasion since graduation. Our internship group of 8 was the ideal size and we really did become a family over our quick nine months together. We were able to gain widespread experience through two week rotations in 12 different practice areas and 6 weeks worth of rotations in areas of our interest. I can confidently say I feel competent to enter any entry level position related to dietetics after the internship at Emory."

Rachel Stroud, 2011


"I applied to the internship program at Emory because of the reputation of the hospital. I hoped the standards set for interns would be as high as the award-winning hospital's own. They were; the internship was challenging, exciting, exhausting (at times), rewarding, and a place where I made life-long friends. I learned more during my 10 months at Emory than I thought possible. The structure of the internship allowed me to build on my prior education, while offering a vast support system to ensure quality patient care. The internship helped build my competence as well as my confidence, especially with counseling. Though the internship has a clinical focus, other areas are not lacking. The food service, community, and elective rotations allowed me to experience some of the many careers available in our field. When I completed the internship I had a wonderful sense of accomplishment and knew that I was prepared for not only the registration exam, but also for my future in dietetics."

Leah Agnew, 2010


"The Emory Internship program was everything I expected and more. The preceptors were there to guide me throughout the entire program. They were truly passionate about dietetics and equally as passionate about teaching and sharing their knowledge. I had a job lined up prior to graduating as a nutrition manager and sole dietitian for a facility. During the interview, the regional director of the company informed me that the reason he picked me out of multiple applications was that I was an Emory Internship graduate, so he knew how well prepared I would be. He was right! I was able to function confidently in my environment and have already moved on to a larger facility within the same company. Thank you Emory!"

Sarah Caron, 2010


"For me, Emory University Hospitals' Dietetic Internship experience can be summed up in three words: thorough, rigorous, and organized. Every minute of the program is designed to benefit the intern. Emory's director and preceptors have dedicated significant time to designing assignments, projects, and hands on learning experiences that most reflect the real life work environment. To the best of the director's ability, a varied and comprehensive depiction of dietetic practice is structured for the intern. Additionally, one of the aspects I am grateful for is the thorough organization of the nine month program. I knew what to expect and when to expect it; knowing I was getting the most out of the experience. With a great credential, a well respected institution, and life long contacts and friends behind me, Emory has launched me on a successful and fulfilling career path!"

Sarah Strong, 2010