The Department of Nutrition and Metabolism's mission is to provide quality training for a diverse group of students in academia, healthcare and education by integrating clinical and professional experiences within an innovative, evidence-based curriculum.
N&M Dietetic Internship Class of 2013
Names from L-R: Allison Castator, Grace Caplan, Pamela Sanchez, Ashley Jones, Brenda Lee Alcaraz.
The Nutrition and Metabolism Program is a full-time program that provides the option of the Master's Degree with the dietetic internship or the dietetic internship only. The concentration of the program is Nutrition in Aging. Completion of the combined program is approximately 15 months, while completion of the internship is approximately 8 months. Both options will train dietetic professionals to apply the knowledge and experiences gained, and to prepare students to address the challenges and complexities faced in the areas of nutrition and dietetics.
The program reflects the core values of the school: education innovation, service community and diversity. These core values drive the daily activities of the program. Interns are provided with unique and diverse experiences through a variety of site rotation options. Learning experiences allow interns to acquire the core professional competencies required for practice as registered dietitians. Upon successful completion of the programs, graduates are eligible to take the registration examination.
Dietitians are experts in the area of food and nutrition. They have special skills in translating scientific and medical knowledge related to food and health. They inform the general public of the relationship between diet and health and play an important role in health promotion. Dietitians work in a variety of areas including clinics and hospitals, residential care facilities, schools and community health agencies. With additional training and advanced degrees or certifications, dietitians may specialize in areas such as diabetes, renal care or pediatrics dietetics or explore opportunities in the food industry, education, research, business and media.
The educational and professional requirements to become a Registered Dietitian (RD) involve the completion of a bachelor's degree from an accredited university or college in dietetics, foods and nutrition, or a related field. The course work must be accredited or approved by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. An ACEND -accredited supervised practice experience providing a minimum of 1200 hours is required upon completion of the bachelor's degree. Successfully passing the national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetics Registration (CDR) is the final step to becoming an RD. In addition to RD credentialing, many states have regulatory laws requiring licensure.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of dietitians is expected to increase 9 percent during the 2008-18 projected decade. In addition, dietitians with specialized training, an advanced degree, or certifications are projected to enjoy the best employment opportunities. With such great and diverse opportunities in the field of dietetics, RDs will continue to play an important role in health-care and other roles in the community.