I started out as a physical education and maths teacher and developed an interest in overweight/obesity so kept studying eventually ending up in the Masters course at Deakin University. I have worked in community health since graduating in 2000 and did some short stints in a hospital/clinical setting and started my own private practise in Melbourne, Body Warfare Nutrition, three years ago.
Tell me a little bit about your job and/or describe a typical day for you?
A typical day for me is seeing clients individually or facilitating groups. I have been doing some training and speaking as a branch of my private practise so this occurs on a semi-regular basis too. I am often writing blogs for my newsletter/website and tending to media enquires in my role as a DAA media spokesperson.
What do you most enjoy about your role?
What I love most about a career in nutrition is the diversity you can create for yourself. I enjoy seeing clients individually but really love presenting and facilitating groups. I have been very interested in helping people change behaviours and have enjoyed learning and practising different counselling techniques since graduating and this has culminated in writing a book aimed at the consumer but it’s also been used by many dietitians to assist their clients, which I really enjoy hearing about. (Body Warfare, Brolga Publishing 2011)
What would be your number one tip to someone starting their career in dietetics?
My number one tip for new grads would be to embrace the mentoring relationship in your probationary year and to surround yourself with experienced dietitians and peers after that, particularly if you are working on your own. You just need to keep learning; this is really important as it seems more and more new grads are going straight into private practise. One of the things I have loved about community health is the opportunity to work closely with psychologists/counsellors and diabetes educators as I have learnt so much more from these other disciplines that enhance my practise.
What is one interesting fact about you?
One thing from my past is that I once belonged to the Holden Sporting Car club and drove in races around Phillip Island and Winton race tracks- it was fun at the time and I even won a trophy once!