Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Class Day in Annapolis: being a nutrition advocate

On March 2nd, 2016, UMD interns got the wonderful opportunity to spend the day in Annapolis. I’ve recently learned about the importance of becoming an advocate in the field of Dietetics.  I was never big on public policy until I attended Maryland Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’(MAND) legislation day earlier in February, where I got the opportunity speak to delegates with interns from other dietetic internships and registered dietitians about our stance on nutrition related bills. Prior to meeting with delegates, guest speakers provided us with great advice on how to speak with our legislators. This made me confident, and ready to voice my opinion-- all in the name of nutrition!

This class day started with a history lesson and a tour in the historic rooms and chambers of Maryland State House! Next, we observed the Senate in session and the House of Delegates. As an intern class, we were announced in one of the sessions (we felt so special!). Then, we briefly met with Jim Brochin, who is the State Senator for Maryland’s 42nd Legislative District, Baltimore County. Although he was very busy that day, he still made an effort to meet with us, and shared with us his story of why he decided to run. Speaking to him made us realize how much he cares for Maryland and its citizens. 

Attending this class day in Annapolis refreshed my memory about the different roles that Maryland's Legislative, Judicial, and Executive branches play in enacting laws and enforcing them, as well as how a bill becomes a law. Being a nutrition advocate isn't so bad after all. When speaking to delegates, you have to know your stuff! The more you know what you are talking about, the less nervous you will feel. I look forward to becoming more involved in future legislation days, where my voice can make a difference! 

UMD, College Park dietetic interns and program director meet with Senator Brochin

The Agenda 

8:30 a.m. Meet- Joint Hearing Room, First Floor, Department of Legislative Services Building, 90 State Circle, Annapolis, Maryland

View Maryland General Assembly Video “The Legislative Process” 

9:00 a.m. Escort through the Tunnel to the Maryland State House
Tour Historic Rooms and Chambers of Maryland State House

10:00 a.m.  Escort to Reserved Seats in the Senate Gallery, Second Floor, State House

10:30 a.m. View Legislative Session from House of Delegates Gallery

11:00 a.m. Program Concludes in 221 James Senate Office Building

Meet with Senator Jim Brochin

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