Dietetic Career Spotlight: Katherine Nashatker MS, RD, LD, CDE
By SARAH KOSZYK, MA RDN on JUNE 27, 2013
Certified Diabetes Educator, Pediatric Endocrine Dietitian, & Outpatient Nutrition Manager, Katherine Nashatker, positively impacts America’s youth by providing them with knowledge, education, and lifestyle change towards a healthier and happier life. – Sarah
What attracted you to the field of nutrition and dietetics?
I was fortunate to witness the benefits of eating a healthy diet in my experience as a high school athlete. I wanted to build upon that knowledge in college and pursue a career that would help me to empower others to feed themselves well so that they may lead happy and healthy lives.
Your Job Title?
Outpatient Nutrition Manager, Pediatric Endocrine Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator
Company you are with now?
A typical (or not so typical) day-in-the-work-life for you?
I provide nutrition counseling to children with endocrine disorders in the outpatient and inpatient setting at a large hospital. My days are built around the needs of the patients, so I enjoy using written, online, and interactive education materials to engage my young patients. (In the attached picture, I am editing a handout to be used for young patients with diabetes). No day is the same, so a typical day can vary greatly with regards to the location at which I am working, the education materials that I am using, or the time that I am spending touching base with my colleagues as I manage the resources for dietitians serving over 16 outpatient clinics at this hospital.
How did you get your current job in dietetics?
I progressed from inpatient clinical work to outpatient work after the opportunity came up five years ago within my company. I am a member of my local dietetics chapter and am fortunate to have maintained contact with a strong network of dietitians.
What skills were you born with and what skills have you learned along the way?
I am a caring, independent, and very determined individual. I have had to develop skills to become a strong communicator, as I my past experiences have taught me that in order to execute a well made plan, you must first enlist the help of those around you! I am fortunate to be surrounded by talented, ambitious and supportive professionals who consistently challenge me to become a better clinician, researcher and manager.
What advice do you have for others wanting to be just as successful and fulfilled as you?
Take plenty of time to learn what makes you happy before settling on a career path. I can relate to the advice of the well known saying that if you “find a job you love, you’ll never work a day in your life” as I have found a job that fits my personality, allows me to feel satisfied and gives me a sense of pride having provided help to others on a daily basis.
If you could be paid for your job with something other than a paycheck, what would it be?
I would be like to able to peek through a window into the future and see how the lives of the children that I have counseled today were positively impacted as they grow into teenagers and then on into adults. If I could receive confirmation that what I did made a difference, that would be compensation enough!