School of Health and Human Sciences

Frequently Asked Questions

Why become a Registered Dietitian

Registered dietitians apply the science of nutrition by utilizing nutrition knowledge to promote health and/or treat disease in hospitals, clinics, community settings, private consulting practices, sports nutrition and corporate wellness programs, newspapers and magazines, food and nutrition-related businesses and industry, pharmaceutical companies, and more. Most of these settings require the R.D. credential for employment. For more detailed information on careers in dietetics, see the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) website careers information.

As an alternative to pursuing the R.D. credential, our undergraduate nutrition curriculum also provides an outstanding foundation for pursuing careers in medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, and other biomedical sciences, as well as graduate study and research careers in nutrition and related areas

What if I complete the degree in nutrition, but choose not to do a dietetic internship? What are my career opportunities?

Our undergraduate Human Nutrition and Dietetics program, like others throughout the United States, is designed to meet the AND requirement for entry into a dietetic internship program and pursuit of the R.D. credential. Forgoing the dietetic internship means you haven’t completed your education in dietetics/nutrition and job opportunities are limited in many instances. However, it must be noted that this degree is an excellent foundation for pursuing post-baccalaureate education in medicine, veterinary medicine, dentistry, other biomedical professions, as well as graduate study in nutrition and related areas leading to a research-focused career either with or without the R.D. credential.

What if I completed a bachelor’s degree in a major other than foods and nutrition? What do I need to do to become an R.D.?

If your degree comes from an accredited college or university in the U.S., you do not need to complete another bachelor’s degree. However, you do still need to complete AND-approved Didactic Program requirements before applying to a dietetic internship program. In most cases, there is additional coursework required beyond the didactic program in order to complete the second degree and degree-seeking students have the advantage of financial eligibility. The Department of Nutrition’s DPD Director will review your college transcripts and advise you as to the undergraduate coursework you will need to take to complete DPD requirements and become eligible to apply for dietetic internships. If you are an international student, you should contact the Registrar’s Office. They will evaluate your college transcripts and determine the equivalency to U.S. coursework prior to review of your transcripts by the DPD Director. The AND also offers additional information for international applicants.