Greetings from RDville: Continuing ed

I can’t call these posts “Road to RDville” anymore, because I’ve reached that destination, but since I still plan to post occasionally about the nuts and bolts of being an RDN, I did a little rebranding.

I spent a goodly number of hours yesterday working on my 5-year professional development portfolio for the Commission on Dietetic Registration. This involves setting my professional and learning goals for the next five years, and choosing the learning codes that match those goals. The continuing education credits I earn during this period have to have one of those codes attached to it.
At first I was spinning my wheels, thinking “Ahhhhh…how am I supposed to narrow down everything I want to do in the next five years?” Then I realized I was overthinking things, and my plan came together neatly. First I chose two professional goals, one immediate and one that will take me to the end of my first five years as an RDN:

Immediate: Work in an ambulatory/outpatient setting with
eating disorder and weight management clients.
This covers a broad range of learning codes, including those for disordered eating, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, food allergies and sensitivities, gastrointestinal disorders, women’s health, obesity, psychiatric disorders and anxiety, bariatric surgery, substance abuse and alcoholism, disease prevention, adult and adolescent health, exercise and sports nutrition, and general nutrition assessment.

Longer term: Increase business, professional and entrepreneurial skills
in order to start a private practice and online nutrition business.

This includes a broad range of professional skills, as well as specific learning codes for business plan development, entrepreneurship and private practice, marketing, financial management, sales and merchandising.

Then I chose three learning goals that will deepen my skills and general knowledge:

Stay abreast of current and emerging nutrition trends.
This includes genetics, botanicals and phytochemicals, nutritional biochemistry, vitamins and minerals, exercise physiology, complementary and alternative therapies, and genetically modified food.

Increase nutrition counseling and education skills.

This will allow me to get credit for extra training I get in motivational interviewing, coaching, behavior change theories and techniques, therapy and group facilitation.

Increase food and culinary skills to help clients learn to prepare healthy meals at home.

This covers boosting my culinary skills and techniques, recipe development, menu planning, cultural and ethnic food practices, vegetarianism and food styling.

As my plan came together, I was almost giddy. What can I say…I’m a geek for learning, and learning never ends.