Julia Cobuzzi, allied health sciences major, was selectively picked by the UConn Summer Extension Internship program to gain hands-on work experience in her field.
Julia came into our office last week to share some of her exciting professional experiences over the summer—
Julia’s initial search began with a desire to find an internship which would jumpstart her career and hone a particular interest within the allied health field. Julia visited the Center for Career Development and received help from career consultant, Paul Gagnon. Mr. Gagnon relayed the internship opportunities available through the UConn Summer Extension program and Julia applied through HuskyCareerLink in January. It was only one month later when she was interviewed and offered the position. Julia was one of 14students who were selected for an internship through UConn’s Extension program this past summer.
During the summer, Julia worked with two federal nutrition programs – The Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP), and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP-Ed) – through the Fairfield County Extension Center.
As a Community Nutrition Programming Intern, Julia garnered invaluable knowledge and professional skills in the dietetic field. Every week, through the subset 4-H Youth Program, Julia taught nutrition classes to students at low-income elementary schools in Bridgeport and Danbury. During these classes, Julia would relay important nutritional information to students, play educational games, and hold food demos. Julia enthused that oatmeal pancakes and fruit smoothies were big hits and showed kids that healthy alternatives can be both nutritious and delicious. Julia also worked with the Norwalk Health Department community garden, harvesting vegetables wih children and teaching them the concept of MyPlate, the nutrional guideline that replaced the Food Pyramid in 2011.
Children were not the only individuals that Julia came in contact with, as she was able to share lessons on nurtrition and cooking demos with the elderly at Danbury Senior Center, and veterans through the Veteran Affairs Office in Bridgeport. Once a month she also travelled into both Bridgeport and Danbury alongside the CT Mobile Food Bank and dispersed recipies, dietary information, and SNAP information to the community.
All in all, the big question for Julia was how this summer experience shaped her career trajectory. Julia credits the Extension program for solidifying her desire to become a registered dietician, and hopes that by the end of her time here at UConn she will be able to decide between the pediatric or diet-restricted field.