I certainly did.
Kaleida Health is the largest healthcare provider in Western New York and operates five hospitals in the area of varying sizes. I did a month-long internship at Buffalo General, and also spent time at Women’s and Children’s Hospital earlier on in my time as a student. I was always impressed with the professionalism of the dietitians and the thoroughness with which they practiced.
OK, enough rhapsodizing about my new employer. Let’s get back to the story.
Clinical (i.e. someone who works in a hospital with acute-care patients) dietitian jobs are REALLY hard to come by here in Western New York. As in, I’ve only SEEN two or three positions come open in the past year, and I’ve never even gotten a call for an interview, even though I have a pretty strong resume (albeit with limited ‘real’ experience). We simply have too many dietitians in this area, despite all the healthcare facilities here.
So, you’ll appreciate how shocked I was to receive a call from Kaleida HR just one day after applying for this particular job. Within a week I had an interview with HR, and as I sat in my chair, the rep made my next interview with the Clinical Nutrition Manager for the next Thursday afternoon. The next morning, I got the call offering me the job!
I didn’t even know how much I wanted the job until I started interviewing…so I’m very thankful I got the opportunity to go back into the hospital!
The job, in particular, is at DeGraff Memorial Hospital, as a clinical dietitian. It’s 20 hours a week, which is perfect for me since I already work part-time at Buffalo State College’s health center doing nutritional counseling with students. Plus, DeGraff is pretty small (only 60 beds!), so the RDs there only work part-time and are usually responsible for the whole hospital themselves during their shift. (A far cry from Buffalo General, where there may be six or seven RDs working full-time each day!)
One caveat: my job is temporary. I’m filling in for an RD taking 6 months maternity leave, and I’m hoping that when she returns in February I’ll be able to find something part-time or per diem (like substituting) within Kaleida.
I started Friday by shadowing the woman for whom I’m filling in and will be with her for the next couple shifts before she’s on maternity leave. I’m still getting back into the swing of things, but thankfully I have experience with their electronic medical record (the computer program we use to write notes and access information) and I have some time before I’m flying solo.
DeGraff is north of Buffalo and sounds far away (gasp! North Tonawanda!) but is approximately 30 minutes from my house and is almost all highway and no traffic, praise God. Shifts are 8am-1pm, which is perfect for me to continue nutritional counseling at Buffalo State and teaching some classes at the YMCA.
I’m thrilled to get some real clinical experience under my belt, build my resume and excited to see what will be in store for me six months from now!