Scholarships Received: 2020/2021 Colonel Francis Ballentine Memorial Scholarship
2018/2019 Commission on Dietetic Registration Doctoral Scholarship 

Job/Position Title: Critical Care Dietitian / Registered Dietitian 2

 Employer: Corpus Christi Medical Center / Sodexo 

Crystal Vasquez

Brief description of current job responsibilities:  I provide nutrition support for two ICUs, covering 48-beds; managing enteral and parenteral nutrition as well as transitioning patients to oral diets when appropriate. I also serve as the relief NICU dietitian. 

How did you learn about the availability of the Foundation Fellowship that you received? I originally heard about the Foundation Scholarships through my undergraduate faculty advisors and now schedule it on my calendar to keep an eye open to apply each year. 

What motivated you to apply?  I knew I would not get a scholarship if I did not apply for one. I tend to apply for opportunities as they come available, and this has really opened a lot of doors for me. That is always my biggest advice to people when they are not sure if they will get something or be able to do it – just go for it! 

How are you utilizing the funds the scholarship? I am currently working on my Doctorate degree in Clinical Nutrition. The scholarship funds have been a tremendous help towards my tuition costs. 

How is the scholarship advancing your career, helping you achieve your goals? The funds have been put towards tuition costs for my DCN program. The fact that I am working on a doctorate degree allowed me to advocate for a higher starting wage at my new position. Eventually, while I do plan to continue in direct patient care, I hope to teach at the university level. My passion is MNT and the clinical side of nutrition, so I believe the DCN is the perfect fit for my career goals and interests. 

What advice do you have for your colleagues about seeking out and applying for a Foundation award or scholarship?  To apply! I have had many colleagues tell me they think they are not deserving or will not qualify for a scholarship; you’ll never know if you don’t apply. The process may seem taunting at first but break up the applications into smaller tasks. Also, ask for recommendation letters early and provide the people you are asking with your current resume and why you are applying for the scholarship and what your goals are.

Scholarship and Award Application and Timeline Information
All applications and timelines for Foundation funding opportunities are made available electronically within the Foundation’s application portal. Generally, the scholarship applications are available from mid- February to mid-April, most award and grant applications are available from December to February, and fellowship opportunities are posted as they become available.

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