College of Nursing & Professional Disciplines

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Laura Pietig ’17: Nurturing Health through Nutrition

Laura Pietig, a 2017 Dietetics alumna of the University of North Dakota, has forged a successful career as a Registered Licensed Dietitian, positively impacting patients’ lives through her nutrition expertise.

Passionate about the benefits of food and its impact on overall health, Laura Pietig ’17 was drawn to nutrition to empower individuals to lead healthier lives. “I just simply love food and the different benefits it can have on a person’s health,” she says. Her desire to help people stay nourished and develop a healthy relationship with food fueled her determination to pursue a career in dietetics.

Why Study Nutrition at UND?

When choosing a university, UND stood out for its exceptional program in Dietetics. In addition to its proximity to her family in Minnesota, Laura appreciated the small class sizes and the engaging professors. Unlike traditional didactic internships, UND’s coordinated program combines all the necessary components within the four-year curriculum, streamlining the learning process. “I liked that everything was incorporated within the four years.”

Laura also found great value in UND’s mentorship program, which paired her with a student already enrolled in the coordinated program. This invaluable support and guidance helped her navigate the application process and fostered a sense of community within the program.

Furthermore, UND’s strong emphasis on community service resonated with Laura, providing time to make a difference. “The program was also very big into giving back to the community with numerous community service opportunities,” shares Laura.

Reflecting on her UND experience, Laura acknowledges its significant role in shaping her personal goals and needs.

To those considering a degree in dietetics today, Laura wholeheartedly encourages them to pursue it. The field of dietetics is expanding, offering a multitude of career opportunities. Laura finds her work as a Clinical Dietitian Specialist in the cardiac unit at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, MN, deeply satisfying. “It has been a very rewarding career being able to help people improve their nutrition and health.”

Specialization Aids Recovery

Additionally, Laura has earned a Clinical Nutrition Specialist certification with competency in placing naso-jejunal feeding tubes. This specialized certification requires extensive training. Naso-jejunal tubes provide nourishment directly to the small bowel in patients unable to consume sufficient nutrients orally. Using the Cortrak machine, an electromagnetic sensing device, Laura ensures proper tube placement, reducing the need for repeated attempts. “I feel like I have direct impact on the patient’s nutrition, says Laura when explaining the method. “Once the feeding tube is placed, we can help nourish the patient to meet their needs for recovery.”

Laura credits the UND Nutrition and Dietetics program for providing her with the skills and knowledge necessary to succeed as a Registered Dietitian. Moreover, the program’s strong network facilitated her seamless transition from college to the workforce. She says that UND has “provided me with a great network that made it easy for me to find a job right out of college.”

Through her experiences in various areas such as hospitals, communities, research, and long-term care, Laura gained a comprehensive understanding of the field, further solidifying her foundation as a professional in the nutrition industry.

Laura Pietig’s journey from UND Student Dietitian to a respected Clinical Dietitian Specialist exemplifies the profound impact that a passion for nutrition and a strong education can have on one’s career.

As interest in nutrition has grown, so have the job possibilities for nutrition and dietetics graduates. Visit the website to learn more about UND’s undergraduate and graduate Nutrition & Dietetics program options.

Comments

1 comment
Samuel Mawanda says:

This is a touching story. That’s the university I would desire to study my Masters in Public Health Nutrition

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