ASU alumna and Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics presidential candidate Dr. Glenna McCollum-Cloud discussed the role of nutrition with health care reform, finding your career passion and the growing concern of student career possibilities after graduation with the ASU Student Nutrition Council Thursday.
McCollum-Cloud, a Registered Dietitian and the former academy speaker for the House of Delegates, is currently serving on the House of Delegates’ Board of Directors. As an Arizona native, McCollum-Cloud was the former Chandler University president and had also served as the director of nutrition for the Central Arizona College for 17 years.
With health reform changing the outlook for nutrition careers, McCollum-Cloud discussed how nutrition is emerging as the newest preventive measure insurance companies are taking to keep their customers healthy.
“With health reform, change has come,” she said. “We need people who are really out of the box. We can’t be thinking of how we have always done business because if we do, we will be out of business.”
McCollum-Cloud said the role of the dietitian is now more important than ever. The old approach to health care will not solve the future’s health problems.
“We have to learn from our past and we are at the same place now with health reform,” she said. “New evolutions are coming with how or who will be reimbursed for nutrition services.”
McCollum-Cloud offered advice to students on making a change: “Begin with the end in mind.”
This advice focused on students thinking of their actions or career choices as a bigger picture instead of a smaller, localized action, she said.
With the many career choices within the field of nutrition, McCollum-Cloud said, “The more you listen to you, the better you are going to be at what you do. Find what is in harmony and matches who you are as a person and what you are passionate about doing.”
With a 50 percent acceptance rate for the dietetics internship, McCollum-Cloud addressed student concerns and career outlook by discussing alternative career pathways.
The new emerging plan within the academy is a program called Individualized Supervised-Practice Pathway, which was approved by the Board this last year. With this new plan, students who do not get matched with an internship can design their own pathway to meet the general competencies for the Registered Dietitian certification examination.
“I learned the value of emerging leadership and concentrating with the end goal,” Jason Paulson, a senior dietetics student with political aspirations said of McCollum-Cloud’s visit. “I am thrilled with the opportunity to make large scale changes with nutrition.”
Student Nutrition Council Vice President Kyle Lynch felt that McCollum-Cloud spent time addressing students’ needs and concerns.
“She recognized the impact that students in the Student Nutrition Council and within the School of Nutrition and Health Promotion have on health outcomes,” he said. “She understands our role as future dietitians and has a fresh take on student issues.”
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