Dietetic Intern Feature: Ellen Darnall

Over the past three weeks I was fortunate to have Ellen as a dietetic intern.  Having known Ellen during my MSU undergrad program it was exciting to work with one another on a different level.  Her enthusiasm about learning about our programs was refreshing.  Ellen was able to easily follow our philosophy because of her knowledge about both nutrition and yoga (Ellen practices yoga three times a week)  Learn more about Ellen through her dietetic intern feature!

Where are you doing your dietetic internship?

I am doing my internship with Wayne State University. The focus of the internship is a general internship combining community, food service, clinical and elective rotations. So far I have completed my food service rotation at St. Joseph Mercy Oakland hospital, my community rotation at The Youth Connection and my elective at The Inner Door Center®.

Briefly describe your intern experience/duties at Inner Door Center®:

At the Inner Door Center® I was allowed to sit in on yoga therapy, snack, lunch, and nutrition counseling sessions with the patients. I was even allowed to do a nutrition follow up assessment for one of the patients. I also learned about nutrition assessment and sat in on staff meetings.

What was something that stood out to you about your experience at Inner Door Center®?:

I really liked the collaboration between the staff. All of the staff works together as a team to provide the patients the very best care they can. There is an open communication between all of the facilitators and the therapists. Incorporating the yoga philosophy and practice into a treatment setting is very unique and is a different approach than any other facility out there.

What are your career goals short and long term?

My short term career goals involve becoming a registered dietitian and passing my RD exam. After I am registered I can see myself enjoying a variety of careers.  I have always had an interest in nutritional counseling and ultimately want to have a career in that field.

How do you think your experience at Inner Door Center® will you reach your career goals?

The Inner Door gave me an inside look at nutritional counseling for eating disorder. I was able to gain a great understanding of how to use counseling skills as a dietitian. These will be great skills to have in my future career.

Why would you recommend an internship rotation at Inner Door Center® to other students?

The Inner Door Center® offers a great setting to learn about eating disorder treatment. All the staff at the center is very dedicated to helping their patients and willing to help interns learn along the way.


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