Prior to joining Priority Nutrition Care Distance Dietetic Internship as our Program Director, Jean Anderson served as an external consultant for our Program and as an external consultant to the medical school program in Qatar University.
Prior to that, Jean served as Dietetic Internship Director and Lecturer in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at Iowa State University. For 15 years, Jean led one of the largest ACEND accredited dietetic internships in the US and developed one of the first internships delivered in a fully distance-education format. She also led the development of an international community nutrition rotation in collaboration with the University of Ghana/Accra. Similar collaborations were explored in Peru, Pakistan and India.
Ms. Anderson completed her dietetic internship at St. Francis Medical Center, Peoria Illinois following the completion of her Associate of Science at Cottey College in Nevada, Missouri and her Bachelor of Science Degree in Dietetics at Iowa State University.
Jean's career as a Registered Dietitian began at WIC and was followed by a position at Iowa State University Residence Hall Dining Services as assistant dining hall manager in the halls that provided service to the athletic training tables.
During her appointment at Iowa State University, she completed her Master of Science degree. Subsequently she served as Manager and Dietitian of the Dietary Department at Hamilton County Hospital and Medical Center in Webster City IA. Her next appointment was as Dietitian and commissary manager for TAVCO, a full-service vending company in Ames, Iowa where she developed a federally mandated labeling system/format for the company.
During the course of her career as a Registered Dietitian, Ms. Anderson has served on local and state dietetic boards and councils, the state of Iowa professional licensure board and the national Quality Management Committee of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She currently serves as a program reviewer for ACEND.
Throughout her career Jean has been the recipient of many professional awards--- university, state and national. She lives in Ames IA with her spouseman-extraordinaire and Lola the wonder pooch where she enjoys reading, golf, knitting dishcloths, keeping the sourdough starter fed and alive, and doing other things that are intriguing.
I hope that my biography will provide you with some insight into my experience in the field of nutrition and dietetics and how this experience lent and continues to lend itself to the development of a Dietetic Internship experience that provides for inclusivity for traditional and nontraditional students alike, through the knowledge of the vast opportunities awaiting Registered Dietitians and the recognition that every aspect of this field is based in business.
I am the founder and CEO of Priority Nutrition Care LLC, formerly Priority Nutrition Care and Services and the Priority Nutrition Care Distance Dietetic Internship. Our office, from which we can see the Boston skyline, is in Hingham, Massachusetts. I am a Registered Dietitian and Licensed Nutritionist with over thirty years of experience in the fields of Nutrition, Education, and Business. I am a native Bostonian and received my Bachelor of Science in Nutrition at the University of Massachusetts in Amherst and my Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Northeastern University in Boston. I completed my Dietetic Internship at Rhode Island Hospital in Providence Rhode Island.
Early in my career, the seed was planted for my interest in Diabetes care and its challenges and opportunities while working at the former New England Deaconess Hospital (now Beth Israel Deaconess), which at the time was affiliated with The Joslin Clinic. I became a Certified Diabetes Educator and enjoyed working with clients to help them gain and maintain control of their Diabetes. Additionally, I founded the first professional practice group in Boston for Dietitians working with Cancer patients, with the backing of The American Cancer Society’s Boston office and the Dana Farber Cancer Center, as an Oncology Specialist.
Several years with Mead Johnson Nutritional Division, a division of Bristol Myers Squibb, allowed me to share my expertise in nutrition care for oncology patients, which had been honed at the Deaconess, as a Registered Dietitian specializing in their adult products. Later, I became involved in neonatal and pediatric nutrition with some of the world’s best-known pediatricians and neonatologists from around the United States, as a liaison for Mead Johnson with Neonatal and Pediatric Nurseries and Intensive Care units, with an emphasis on the Harvard, Tufts, and Boston University affiliated institutions.
An affinity for education led me to the faculty of Northeastern University’s University College for over ten years, where I taught several levels of Nutrition. I was also an adjunct faculty member at many other colleges and universities in the Boston area.
One position in particular led to an opportunity to become the Chief of Clinical Nutrition and Food Services for the Boston Veteran’s Administration Medical Center and outpatient services in Boston, where I remained until I was offered the position of Department Chairperson in Nutrition and Food Management at Labouré College in Boston, a college of health professions, where I was the Director of the Dietetic Technician Program.
I came to realize while at Laboure College that there were many individuals locked out of the field of nutrition and dietetics for several reasons. These people included those who had families or responsibilities which precluded them from leaving home and relocating to complete an internship. As such, I decided to develop an Internship Program for people who want or need to stay in their communities for a plethora of reasons.
Having had a thriving private practice for decades, seeing private clients and consulting for small, medium and large entities, well known and obscure, I developed the Priority Nutrition Care Distance Dietetic Internship, in part to provided opportunities to make the field more inclusive. I believe my colleagues and I have accomplished that goal.
Coming from a family of health care providers and educators, having worked full time since I graduated from college, bringing up two sons who are now professionals and helping them with the challenges of bringing up their four children, while they work full time, I appreciate the challenges facing our Interns and try to incorporate all of this experience to continually improve our Program. I recently stepped down as the Program Director to focus on business development in our company.
Maria has been the District School Nutrition Director of Walpole Public Schools for the past ten years and a Program Coordinator and Preceptor for Priority Nutrition Care Distance Dietetic Internship for eight years. She is a licensed Registered Dietitian and School Nutrition Specialist and holds a Master’s Degree in Organizational Leadership from Eastern Nazarene College.
Maria's thirty plus years of experience in Nutrition and Food Services encompass many different types of operations including healthcare, business and industry and retail as well as consultation for private schools.
She has an extensive training and education background acting as Visiting Lecture for Framingham State University’s Food and Nutrition Program, her alma mater, where she completed her Bachelor's degree and Internship through their Coordinated Program. For the past 30 years she hasacted as a preceptor for many dietetic internship programs including Priority Nutrition Care Distance Dietetic Internship Program.
In addition, she has taught several different courses and workshops for the John Stalker Institute of Food and Nutrition.
Maria's contributions to our profession have been admirable and include, but are not limited to, service as the Northeast Leadership Development Committee representative for the National School Nutrition Association and the Northeast representative for the Nutrition and Dietetic Educators and Preceptors (NDEP) practice group of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. NEDP’s mission is to advocate for and empower educators and preceptors to lead the profession of nutrition and dietetics.
For Maria, Dietetics is a family business. Her daughter and son in law are both RDNs.