Hello, I’m Veronica, a senior studying dietetics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. I’m also the new “mentee” working with LifeSteps® through the RD Mentorship Program, a dynamic and innovative program founded and implemented by Kristen Hicks-Roof Ph.D, RDN, LDN, FAND and Karen Beathard Ph.D, RDN, LDN, FAND.
I switched to dietetics last year, which happened to be during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the pandemic, I wanted to find an opportunity to work alongside a registered dietitian (RD) mentor to grow and learn about the ways RDs impact lives. Knowing I was seeking a mentor, my academic advisor shared the program to connect me with other students and RDs.
This part of my journey will show me a glimpse of how reaching out to the community and connecting with dietitians is elementary to one’s success. Once I’m a licensed RD, I’d love to start in a clinical setting then move into a community, potentially opening a practice! Helping people improve their quality of life with food is something I’ve always felt passionate about. I believe that food is our medicine, whether that be for health or just fulfilling our happiness.
Joining this program allows me to work with my mentor on projects, helping me achieve the experience I’ve been looking for to take the next steps on my journey to becoming an RD. I’m very grateful for my mentor and for being given the opportunity to work with LifeSteps®! I hope you all enjoy the various content as much as I enjoy making them!
LifeSteps® Mentor Perspective
We’ve been fortunate to work with the RD Mentorship program for the past two years and are excited to have Veronica bring the perspective of a dietetic student just setting out in her career. Like our LifeSteps® Leaders, Veronica is passionate about helping others to better health. Having her on our team is a win-win. By mentoring a student, we can support the goals of the RD Mentorship Program- to empower the next generation of nutrition professionals and build bonds between RD professionals and nutrition students. We’ll also learn from Veronica as we support her professional journey. LifeSteps® is a ready-to-use 16-week, group weight management and lifestyle change program for registered dietitians and nutrition and wellness professionals to use in their nutrition practice.