Reba Sloan

Reba Sloan, MPH, LRD, FAED

How did you get started in your career? 
When I was 13 years old (in the 1960′s) I went from being an overweight child to severely anorexic. There was very little awareness in regards to eating disorders at that time and even less treatment available. When I was hospitalized on a regular pediatric unit, I met with a registered dietitian who recommended that I pursue becoming a dietitian. I had no idea what a dietitian was at that time … but I made up my mind there and then to become one! That was the beginning of both my journey to full recovery from anorexia and arriving where I am currently in my profession.

What advice would you give to someone new to the field? 
Don’t count on university programs or internships to provide you with what you need to be effective in this field. Much of what I have learned has been from attending continuing education events directly aimed at enhancing skill and knowledge levels necessary to treat eating disorders. Some of the most beneficial conferences I have ever attended are those geared more towards therapists. Consider pursing a Master’s Degree in counseling or psychology. I have found my Master’s of Public Health degree with a behavioral counseling emphasis to be invaluable! Finally… resolve any weight/food/eating issues you struggle with and plan to obtain case supervision as you begin your career.

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