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Dietetic Internship Experience
Hospital Foodservice Experience - Allergen Identification Poster
To help foodservice staff members identify foods that contain the top eight allergens, I designed an Allergen Identification Poster for the Food and Nutrition Department at Scripps Mercy Chula Vista Hospital. This poster categorized in-house food items by the allergen they contain and also summarized allergen-containing ingredients that are commonly found on food labels. This poster also explained what food allergy is and described its common symptoms. Please click on the following link to take a look at the poster.
Solana Beach School District
Solana Beach School District is a 3000-student school district located in San Diego County. It serves grade K-6th through its seven school sites. Each school site has its own kitchen. During my stay at the district from September to November, I rotated through most of the site kitchens and participated in the management of food ordering, inventory, lunch service, and staffing under the supervision of the foodservice manager. The following sections describe some of the projects that I completed during my rotation.(https://www.sbsd.k12.ca.us/)
Citrus Art lesson
With other dietetic interns, I participated in the teaching of citrus art lessons for kindergarten to third-grade students at Carmel Creek and Solana Vista Elementary School. The lesson started with a story-reading session of the book Nutrafruit Heroes, which raised the students’ interest around fruit. The lesson then talked about citrus growth and farming. I explained to the students about the growth process of a citrus tree and drew corresponding pictures on the whiteboard to accompany my speech.
After that, interns shared with the students about fun facts around several types of commonly found citrus, including orange, lemon, lime, pumelo, and grapefruit. Interns also handed out small pieces of these citruses (except pumelo) to all students so that they could observe and taste the differences between these fruits.
The class wrapped up with an art activity that aimed to teach the students about the anatomy of citrus fruit. During the activity, interns each guided a table of four to five students, and the students were able to create colorful pictures by stamping citrus halves on paper with paint. The class generally lasted about 1 hour. Please click on the following link to take a look at the lesson plan that I developed with my fellow intern peers.
Red Ribbon Week Nutrition-Related Activities
During the week of October 24th – 28th, 2016, Red Ribbon Week activities were implemented at Carmel Creek Elementary School, targeting kindergarten to third-grade students. Working together with fellow dietetic interns, I communicated with the principal and parent volunteers about event ideas, time management, and resources. After that, under the supervision of the foodservice director, the interns carefully planned for items such as supply list, volunteer task list, and timelines.
Specific activities conducted during the week included a taste test for corn relish (a menu item served in the salad bar), a drawing activity in which students were invited to illustrate their favorite fruits, vegetables, and physical activities on a piece of paper tile, and a “Caught Eating Healthy” lunch period.
The interns pieced together all the paper tiles into a paw-shaped mural and hang it in the hallway, aiming to raise awareness of healthy lifestyle among young children. During the “Caught Eating Healthy” lunch period, interns dressed up as fruits and vegetables and handed out “caught eating healthy” stickers to students if they were seen eating fruits and vegetables. Additionally, as a result of the taste test, corn relish consumption greatly increased during one of the following lunch periods.
Food-prep & Storefront Volunteer
During the fall semester of 2015, I volunteered in the Berkeley Student Food Collective (BSFC) for two hours every week. As a storefront volunteer, I placed and organized inventories in the store to make the store look nicer. I cleaned the storefront and sometimes helped food-prep volunteers to prepare food for sale. During the spring semester in 2016, I became a food-prep volunteer myself. I dedicated my love in cooking to making creative food items to be sold in the store at fairly low prices, hoping to help reduce food insecurity in the community. For more information about BSFC, please visit their website by clicking this link.
Campus Cafeteria Evaluation
In spring 2015, through the class of Food System Organization and Management at UC Berkeley, I had the opportunity to volunteer at one of the campus cafeterias for 12 hours. Together with a partner, we evaluated the procurement, production, and service of vegan cookies served in the cafeteria, as well as the efficiency of the cookie machine. We also prepared cookies and some other desserts for the cafeteria. At the end of the volunteer project, we presented our learnings and experiences to the rest of the class. Please click on the following link to view our presentation PowerPoint.
School Lunch Menu Design & Survey Collection
During my Food System Organization and Management course in spring 2015, I learned about the different factors that affect menu planning, such as the National School Lunch Program meal patterns, reimbursable meals, calorie counts, and behavioral economics. To put my learnings into real work, I designed an elementary school lunch menu as one of my assignments.
Later on, in the same course, I had the opportunity to work with peer students to assist in a school lunch survey conducted by the Oakland Unified School District. The goal of this survey was to assess the effectiveness of the Farm to School Program. During the project, we handed out surveys to students and also identified some biased factors that might affect the result of the survey. Please click on the following links to see the lunch menu that I designed, and the school lunch survey project write-up that I completed with my group members.