First of all, I would like to thank Ms. Yi Chien for giving me this fresh graduate an opportunity to have this special internship experience at Homey. During my gap year, I just want to explore as many options as I can. I heard that Homey is the first company in Malaysia which is organized by a doctor and certified dietitians and nutritionists and I could learn a lot from them. So I joined them for a couple of months before continuing my Master’s degree to become a Registered Dietitian.
#1 - Helped over 300 customers during my internship period.
In here, I have helped over 300 customers in less than 3 months by discussing with the kitchen to customize meals based on a variety of medical conditions, especially those who are trying their best to help with their family members who were just diagnosed with certain medical conditions. I think it is quite cool that I hit the target set by me and I am very proud of myself for this achievement. Other than that, I am so happy that our meals accompanied some customers with gestational diabetes mellitus from their first trimester until labor and at last, their babies are healthy.
#2 - Engaged with customers to provide a good customer care process for them.
This field is new to me, however, I think the most important would be to be empathetic and try your best to help as much as possible. This is because patients and their family members are definitely suffering and all I can do to help is talk in a friendly way and provide the most suitable meals for them. Although there are some customers who might not want to share in details, I could apply the motivational interviewing skills from classes as it is crucial for me to understand the MNT of the medical conditions before any meal customization. Of course, life is not a bed of roses, and there would be some picky or unreasonable customers, but I would treat them as challenges and try my best to overcome these so that I could be stronger in the future.
This was me preparing Christmas gifts for our memorable customers.
#3 - Designed healthy pizzas for the first time.
I am so happy that I was given the opportunity to design the healthy pizza. I learned to calculate the nutrition facts from scratch. I love cooking so I was so excited that I could prepare the customized pizzas for our customers. Other than that, this experience trained my organizational skills as I need to ensure the smooth flow from food preparation to food serving. I received mixed feedback from customers. I am happy that some customers loved them so much. On the other hand, some were doubting how pizza could be healthy so I would like them to know that nothing is impossible and with careful planning, dietitians could make wonders.
#4 - Involved in Menu Planning.
This is another new thing that I explored in Homey. As a dietitian in Homey, we need to communicate with the kitchen as we want to provide a variety of menus for customers. We try our best to make our meals more presentable so that even our customers with medical conditions will feel happier when they received our colorful meals.
#5 - Handled quality control of our meals.
To be an excellent dietitian in the foodservice field, it is very important to maintain the quality of the large quantity of meals in a short time. As we want to serve our meals to customers from preparation within the 4 hours as recommended in the food safety guidelines, so I could train my efficiency in making sure the smooth flow in the kitchen. Other than that, I learned to become a chef-friendly dietitian and it is beneficial for me in the future to serve in the food service organization.
#6 - Gained new friendships.
During my internship period, I got to know a lot of people and I love to meet new friends as I think everyone has something for me to learn from. We will go for sports activities such as badminton and hiking. I would like to thank all of my colleagues and customers who have shaped my unique internship experiences at Homey.
This is the photo after we played badminton.
#7 - Lived a healthy lifestyle.
As sometimes I needed to be in the kitchen as early as 8 am, so I built a healthy lifestyle to sleep early and wake up early. And other than that, to understand more about the nutrients in our meals, I would have our Homey healthy weight loss meals as my lunch. To be honest, I think Homey meals are really a great option for those office workers or elderly and kids at home while their children or parents who are busy at work and do not have time to prepare meals for their family members.
#8 - Explored marketing field.
To me, this is a totally new experience for me to promote Homey meals to more people who need this service. I went to some dialysis centers to engage with their patients and provide them and their family members an additional option for their meals. As I could understand, a lot of family members would feel panic when their loved ones were diagnosed with certain medical conditions. I personally think that providing Homey meals to those who need them is very meaningful and could lessen the burden of their family members.
At last, I think that the whole internship experience has shaped a stronger and better me. I would see those challenges as opportunities to learn interpersonal skills, communicating skills, organizational skills, and also leadership skills. I really appreciate this unforgettable memory at Homey and thank you to everyone who helped in creating it.
Teoh Chin May, Dietetic Graduate
University of Nebraska - Lincoln,
The United States.