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North Oaks Graduates 24th Dietetic Internship Class

  • Category: In The News
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  • Written By: Melanie Zaffuto

Nine graduates of the North Oaks Dietetic Internship Program celebrated their accomplishments at a ceremony and reception held Thursday, June 8, 2017, at the E. Brent Dufreche Conference Center in Hammond.

internship class of 2017

Members of the 24th graduating class are pictured with North Oaks Nutritional Services Director Ann McDaniel-Hall at far left and North Oaks Dietetic Internship Director Leslie Ballard at far right. Graduates include: (front row, from left) Kathleen Walton Schneider of Mandeville; Carlie Francis Sternfels of Thibodaux; Savanna Lace Willeford of Walker; Brittany Nicole Craft of Abita Springs; (back row, from left) Grace Elisabeth Mansfield of Baton Rouge; Tiffany Marie Adams of Abita Springs; Sarah Kelly Erwin of Meridian, Mississippi; Courtney Diana Pietrogallo of Baton Rouge; and Michelle Marie Mackie of Palm Bay, Florida.

“Don’t be afraid to be the best,” shared Elizabeth Sloan, keynote speaker for the commencement exercises. “You be the best, and everyone around you will rise to be their best.”

She also shared tips for success, such as joining a professional organization and continuing education, and encouraged the graduates to share their expertise with their colleagues.

With 26 years of experience as a registered dietitian, Sloan has served as the director of dietetics and assistant professor of dietetics at Nicholls State University in Thibodaux since 2012. She also is a certified diabetes educator and lactation consultant.

Three students earned award recognition during the program.

Erwin received the Mary Nelson Award, given by the Dietetic Internship faculty for exceptional work, enthusiastic attitude, dedication to the dietetic profession and academic excellence. The award is given in memory of the late Mary Nelson, who was a professor in dietetics at Southeastern Louisiana University.

Mackie was honored with the “Always Remembering Others” Award, given in honor of North Oaks Patient Representative Dannye Young Taylor by her husband, Dr. Rodney Taylor.

Craft was recognized as the recipient of the Carol Bertrand Award for Excellence. The award was created in memory of the late Bertrand, who was a registered dietitian and graduate of North Oaks’ second Dietetic Internship class.

Diplomas were conferred by Leslie Ballard, director of the North Oaks Dietetic Internship Program and registered dietitian.

The North Oaks Dietetic Internship Program offers qualified individuals a unique opportunity to attain eligibility for the Registration Examination for Dietitians through 1 year of supervised experience.

For more information about the North Oaks Dietetic Internship, contact the program office at (985) 230-6548.