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From Richmond, Virginia, USA:

I am interested in developing my career in diabetes education. I have my MPH degree (2005) and CHES - Certified Health Education Specialist (2001). I am looking for a training program on how to become a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE). I understand that before I can sit for the CDE exam, I have to be employed in diabetes education. However, most diabetes educator jobs require the CDE certification.


It can be frustrating to work towards a certification which requires clinical practice yet not find a job which allows newcomers. Here are a few suggestions to help you with your career objectives:

  • Work in an ancillary field: take a job in patient education (of any kind) and work your way into teaching diabetes;
  • Network: join AADE (American Association of Diabetes Educators) at the national and local levels. You'll find out about available positions before the rest of the world;
  • More networking: get to know local CDEs who may be willing to hire you into their programs - even part time work will help you gain needed hours;
  • Volunteer: immerse yourself in your local diabetes community - volunteer for ADA functions (camps, health care events). While these hours will not count for the CDE exam, you will have access to potential employers; and
  • Stay tuned: watch for a new publication from NCBDE which will provide other suggestions for preparing for the CDE exam (including how to accumulate hours) and continue to monitor the NCBDE web site as requirements may change.


Original posting 26 Apr 2008
Posted to Other


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