Heather Reymunde

Heather Reymunde, M.S.

"Although nutrition wasn’t my first passion in a science field, I developed an intense interest during my twin pregnancy and while raising my sons. My professional evolution from engineer to dietitian has been driven by my innate curiosity and continues to drive my study in the field.

I graduated in 2006 from Pennsylvania State University with my Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering, as a member of Chi Epsilon Honors Engineering Fraternity, with a focus in hydraulics and applied hydrology. Following graduation, I worked in the field of civil engineering in Phoenix, Arizona for four years. I spent my first 2.5 years in the area of land development and drainage analysis and the remainder planning and designing water and wastewater systems.

 I loved my profession in engineering but I felt pulled in the direction nutrition, preventative medicine and nutrition therapy. I began my formal study of nutrition at Marywood University in the fall of 2016 and very quickly felt at home.  As a seasoned student but new to the field of dietetics, I concurrently fulfilled the DPD requirements while completing my master’s degree and balancing life. Having little experience in the area of research, but always up for a challenge, I chose to complete a master’s thesis titled: “The Relationship between Weight and Performance in Elementary Age Wrestlers” and during this time joined the Academy’s Research DPG.

 I graduated in January 2019 from Marywood University with a Master of Science in Nutrition and I applied to the spring 2019 dietetic internship match. Post-graduation, I joined Marywood University’s Nutrition, Athletic Training and Exercise Science Department faculty as an adjunct professor teaching Graduate Research Methodology and I am also continuing my position as the Nutrition Lab Assistant for various courses in the nutrition curriculum.

My graduate work was robust and covered many areas of nutrition. My thesis, more specifically, focused on the topics of Pediatrics and Sport Nutrition.  The experience of completing a thesis at the graduate level has given me the opportunity to present my research at FNCE 2018 and apply for various other calls for abstracts and awards through the Research DPG.

For personal reasons I also have had many questions on the influence of nutrition and the impact on cancer prevention and treatment. My research experience qualified me for selection and acceptance at the John Milner Cancer Research Practicum sponsored by the National Cancer Institute and the National Institutes of Health in March 2019.

No matter your age or past career, the field of dietetics is always in need of qualified practitioners. If you have the desire to go that route, pursue it and don’t take short-cuts. The path to becoming a qualified nutrition professional is lengthy and requires knowledge and practical experience to legally practice as a nutrition expert but it opens you to a vast opportunities within the field of nutrition and beyond."