When Earning an SNS Was the Second Choice but Ultimately, the Best Choice


SNA School Nutrition Specialist (SNS) Camille Soule

What Camille Soule Gained From Earning Her SNS Credential:

  • Expanded her career opportunities
  • Demonstrates commitment to the school nutrition profession
  • Boosts self-esteem and pride in her career
  • Provided a credential that she can maintain throughout her career

The following is the third in a series of news stories highlighting SNA’s School Nutrition Specialist (SNS) Credentialing Program.

For Camille Soule, SNS, there was a time when her career path seemed more like a maze than a straight line.

As a student attending Arizona State University, Soule had her heart set on becoming a registered dietitian and working in a hospital environment. But when she didn’t receive a match for a dietetic internship program, her hopes for a career in nutrition were dashed – but not for long.

“I thought it was the end of the world,” recalled Soule, who would go on to receive a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutrition and Dietetics. “I just looked at what some of my other options were and I noticed there was an SNS (School Nutrition Specialist) Internship Program that would give me the training and opportunity to work in school nutrition for the time being.

“I never thought about doing an SNS internship before, but when I realized I would get to work in the field of foodservice, deal with kids and implement USDA guidelines, I applied. As much as I wanted to do clinical dietetic work, I loved every minute of the SNS internship. I knew my career path from there.”

Soule was one of the four students accepted into the 23-week or 900-hour SNS Arizona State University internship. She found the program, which focused on food service operations, nutrition and nutrition education, administration and marketing and communications, to be the perfect preparation for taking the School Nutrition Specialist (SNS) Credential exam.

“I didn’t realize how much knowledge that I had gained in the six months prior to taking the SNS exam,” said Soule, who now is employed as a nutrition budget coordinator at Paradise Valley Unified School District, in Phoenix and Scottsdale Arizona. “The SNS internship gave me a greater grasp of the business aspect involved with running a child nutrition program than I realized.

“I have always been more of a science person and I thought that school nutrition, which is more business focused, would be a struggle for me, but now that I am in this role and have taken the exam, I was blown away by the knowledge and skill set I have received through the SNS internship and exam.”

Involved in every aspect of school nutrition, from menu cycles to compliancy with the Healthy, Hunger Free Kids Act, her job could not be more rewarding.

“One of the things I love about my job is working with kids I am actually going to go out today and help serve lunch at one of our high schools,” said Soule, who is a member of the SNA Certificate and Credentialing Governing Council, which oversees the SNS exam. “I don’t get to do that all of the time but I really cherish the days that I get to go and see the kids face-to-face and honestly ask them what they think of the menu, what would you like to see changed and what they don’t like.”

Concludes Soule, “Sometimes I don’t think enough attention is given to what a great career school nutrition can be in helping to provide kids with healthy meals so they can focus on their education. I would honestly recommend to anyone in school nutrition to look more closely at earning an SNS.”

Learn how you can join Camille Soule and many foodservice professionals by earning your SNS. Get started today!

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