Published on: Mar 3, 2016
Transcripts - NarrativeforInterdisciplinaryStudiesMajor
I chose to attend Christopher Newport University based on its distinguished athletic
program and its feeling of community. I was recruited to play at the collegiate level for the
NCAA Varsity Volleyball team. I have always found success when being a part of a team
environment, and CNU makes this possible not only on the court, but also in the classroom. Both
professors and peers provide unrelenting support in all of my scholastic endeavors. What set
CNU apart from other schools is its positive, collaborative atmosphere. My teammates,
classmates and administration have all had a hand in my accomplishments. I strive not only to
meet the standards in excellence in place for all CNU students, but utilize all of the tools and
knowledge available for me in order to become the best version of myself. CNU provides all of
the opportunities necessary for my personal success.
While entering my first semester at CNU, I was unaware of my exact future goals and
plans. I did know, however, that I was always interested in the health industry and the care of
others, so I decided on a Biology major. Spring semester of my freshman year, a Registered
Dietician (RD) spoke to our volleyball team, and it became apparent that a career in dietetics was
the path for me. I have spent the last year focusing my jobs and volunteer opportunities relating
to nutrition in order to gain experience. Unfortunately, due to CNU’s liberal arts focus, a dietary
major is unavailable. Searching for a way to combine my dream and CNU’s curriculum, I
decided creating my own interdisciplinary major would be the best option.
In creating my own interdisciplinary major, I have chosen to combine the studies of
biology, psychology, and anthropology. Due to my initial choice of becoming a biology major I
have a foundation of Biology 211, 212, and 213 with labs. I also have the chemistry
requirements, including: Chemistry 121, 122 and Organic Chemistry 322 and 323, labs included.
As I did more research and talked to many professors and outside resources, I found that the best
way to get the most out of my college education was to combine the three majors in order to take
desired classes that cater most to my interest.
I chose biology to gain a better understanding of the body and its functions. The future
biology classes chosen are Biology 395 Nutrition and Homeostasis; Biology 315 Human
Anatomy/Physiology I with the lab; Biology 315 Human Anatomy/Physiology II with the lab;
and 301 Microbiology with the lab.
I chose the psychology department because it identifies with people’s attitudes toward
food, as well as, how they experience food. The psychology aspect also deals with how
individuals cope with problems regarding their health. Some people deal with their emotions and
problems by turning to food. My psychology aspect of the major will include the foundation of
Psychology starting with 201 and 202; 207 Lifespan Development; 304 Social Psychology; 314
Psychology as Personality; and Psychology 315 Abnormal Behavior. Psychology 207 Lifespan
and Development incorporates the ways individuals grow and mature through social, emotional
and physical experiences. By understanding an individual's development through social, familial,
cultural, and biological influences it will enable me to get a better understanding of why people
turn to certain foods. Psychology 304 Social Psychology will give me the knowledge to
understand how individual’s beliefs and actions influence others. It is relevant to my major
because I can learn how one individual's diet and exercise plan can influence the persons around
him/her. The act of eating and eating habits often take part in a social context. Psychology 314
Psychology as Personality will enable me to understand the varied personalities within society
and how different perspectives, such as psychoanalysis, behaviorism, and humanistic psychology
are impacted by cognitive thinking. I can relate this course to get a better understanding of
different personalities, and how different diets affect the varied kinds of behaviors and
personalities. Psychology 315 Abnormal Behavior covers anxiety, mood, somatoform, eating,
gender and substance disorders, which spark from childhood experiences. This course also
discusses the treatment of disorders, and it would directly correlate to my interest in nutrition
dealing with eating habits and disorders. I also intend to incorporate an independent studies
course, working with a dietary physician along with other research.
The anthropology classes intended for my major are: Anthropology/Sociology 325 Food
and Culture; Anthropology 331 Environment, Culture, and Society; and Anthropology/Sociology
315 Health and Healing. The courses will enable me to get a clear understanding of how
different cultures have an impact each other. A large part of culture stems from food choices;
therefore, by learning about cultures and societies, I will understand how food has come to unify
groups of people. Other classes that I desire to take include: Communications 201 Public
Speaking and Communication 365 Scientific Communication. Those courses will strengthen my
communication skills interpersonally and on a scientific level.
These classes are all carefully selected to mimic courses chosen for dietary majors in
other larger Virginia universities. I know that the Interdisciplinary major (or IDST) is a perfect
way for me to stay engaged and passionate about my interest in dietetics and my overall
education, while continuing to compete athletically. In order to pursue my career in dietetics I
must complete a mandatory Didactic Program in Dietetics, then enroll in an internship program.
Due to the competitive nature of dietetic internships, I believe that the unique structure,
knowledge base, and experience that my interdisciplinary degree provides will allow me to stand
out in the crowd of applicants. Through my research I have gained a better understanding of
what it will take to become successful in my field of studies, and majoring in IDST will allow
me to reach my ultimate goal.