Dietetic Internship | Nutrition and Dietetics | Kent State University

Dietetic Internship

The Kent State University Combined Master's of Science/Dietetic Internship Program is dedicated to preparing interns with the knowledge and skills necessary to become competent Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) in the 21st century.

The Combined Master's of Science/ Dietetic Internship Program, offered by the School of Health Sciences, in the College of Education, Health, and Human Services, is completed in 21 months. Interns are expected to complete both the Master of Science in Nutrition and the Dietetic Internship requirements.

PROGRAM DESCRIPTION

The Kent State University Master of Science/ Dietetic Internship Program is designed to provide interns with experience in:

  •     medical nutrition therapy
  •     clinical nutrition management
  •     community dietetics
  •     business
  •     food service management
  •     elective (U.S. or international option)

Throughout the program, interns are provided with the resources and experiences needed to develop the skills necessary to become competent Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN). Emphasis is placed on intellectual, technological, and professional development while fostering ethical and humanitarian values.

A wide variety of experiences are offered at

  •     medical centers
  •     community sites
  •     food service operations
  •     businesses

Clinical rotations are designed to provide hands-on experience in medical nutrition therapy, allowing interns to utilize knowledge of nutrition science, biological science and pathophysiology of disease gained in the classroom. Community experiences provide active participation in nutrition intervention in the outpatient setting, while enhancing the skills needed to practice in culturally and socially diverse environments. Business rotations enable interns to translate knowledge of management theories into practice.  The dietetic interns actively participate in the supervision of food service delivery at a variety of settings in the Food Service Management rotations. Clinical Nutrition Management rotations foster the development and utilization of management practices in clinical settings. For the Elective experience, interns work with the internship director to create an individualized practice experience to fit their interest areas. The KSU Dietetic Internship Program received approval by ACEND, the accrediting body of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, as of July 2015 for an International Elective Option, which would be an additional expense to the intern. Throughout the program, in both classes and professional practice experiences, emphasis is placed on identifying and utilizing nutrition resources and research for professional development.

The program is completed in 21 months and follows the Kent State University Academic Calendar. Interns are expected to complete both the Master of Science in Nutrition and the Dietetic Internship requirements. Upon completion of the 21-month program and all degree requirements, graduates will receive the verification statement documenting completion of the internship requirements and will be eligible to write the registration exam to become Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN). In addition, program graduates will have completed the requirements for the Master of Science degree and will receive the Master of Science in Nutrition from the University. Attainment of the RDN credential also establishes the eligibility for licensure from the State Medical Board of Ohio. KSU intern graduates moving outside of Ohio will be advised to check with individual state licensure boards for RDN licensure requirements for that state. 

INTERNSHIP REQUIREMENTS

Upon completion of the KSU 21-month Dietetic Internship Program, with a leadership concentration and all degree requirements, graduates will receive a verification statement documenting completion of the internship and will be eligible to complete the exam to become Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN). 

In addition, program graduates will have completed the requirements for the Master of Science degree.  The Internship Program is developmentally accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutritional Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics.

REQUIREMENTS & SCHEDULE

The following outline represents the schedule and sequence of classes leading to a Master of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics and completion of the requirements for the Dietetic Internship. 

Please refer to the School of Health Sciences Graduate Handbook and the Kent State University Graduate Schools Catalog for additional information such as course descriptions requirements.  Refer to the Kent State University Schedule of Classes for course registration information for each semester. 

PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS FOR COMBINED MS/DIETETIC INTERNSHIP

The Kent State University Combined MS/Dietetic Internship Program is completed in 43 credit hours which includes over 1500 supervised internship practice hours.  The program is usually finished in 4 semesters and one summer.  During the semesters, interns go to practice sites 3 days per week and to class two days per week.  During the summer, interns complete a 12 week, full-time clinical experience in a hospital setting.  Interns will be required to have a car and auto insurance coverage for the duration of the internship. The supervised component of the program must be completed within two years of the start of the program. 

Upon completion of the 21-month program and all degree requirements, graduates will receive verification statement documenting completion of the internship requirements and will be eligible to write the registration exam to become Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN).  In addition, program graduates will have completed and receive the Master of Science degree from the University. 

DIETETIC INTERNSHIP SUPERVISED PRACTICE REQUIREMENTS

Practice Experience Requirements: 1550 Hours

Experiences for all weeks listed include a total of 24 hours, usually M, W, F except for the Hospital Clinical Experience which is completed full-time, usually M-F for 12 weeks. 

I. Community (12 weeks): 288 Hours

  • Dialysis (5 weeks)
  • Outpatient (4 weeks)
  • School (3 weeks)

II.  Business (5 weeks): 120 Hours

III.  Management (15 weeks plus 1 day): 368 Hours 

  • Food Service Management (12 weeks)
    • Hospital (9 weeks) 

    • School (3 weeks)

  • Clinical Nutrition Management (3 weeks and 1 day or 10 days)

IV.  Clinical (16 weeks): 576 Hours

  • Hospital (12 weeks full time)
  • Long Term Care (4 weeks)

V.  Elective Rotations (6 weeks): 144 hours 

VI.  Internship Orientation: 40 hours

VII.  Pediatric Seminar (2 days):  14 hours

DIETETIC INTERNSHIP SUPERVISED PRACTICE EXPERIENCES

Food Service Management - 288 Total Hours

Food Service Management is completed in 288 hours.  The experiences are completed over 12 weeks during the academic semesters by working 24 hours per week.  The Food Service Management experiences include the following: 

  • Hospital Food Service Management  216 hours (9 weeks) 

  • School Food Service Management 72 hours (3 weeks)

Clinical Nutrition Management - 80 Total Hours (10 days)

Clinical Nutrition Management rotations are completed in 80 hours during the academic semesters by working 8 hours per day for 10 days.  The Clinical Nutrition Management experiences is usually completed in the hospital setting. 

Community - 288 Total Hours

Community rotations are completed in 288 hours during the academic semesters.  Interns work for 24 hours per week for 12 weeks.  The required Community experiences include the following: 

  • Outpatient Nutrition Clinic/ WIC 96 hours (4 weeks) 

  • Dialysis Center, Bariatric Center, University Nutrition Outreach, or other Community-based program 120 hours ( 5 weeks)

  • School Nutrition Education 72 hours (3 weeks)

Clinical Nutrition Therapy - 576 Total Hours

Clinical Nutrition Therapy rotations are completed in 576 hours during the academic semesters and during the summer.  During one summer, interns work full-time at a major medical center for 12 weeks (480 hours) and complete Pediatrics, Medicine, Surgery, Critical Care, and Geriatric supervised practice experiences.  Clinical dietetic rotations in Extended Care facilities are completed in 96 hours during the academic semesters.  The intern works 24 hours per week for 4 weeks at an extended care facility.

Business - 120 Total Hours

Business experiences include 120 hours during the academic semesters.  The intern works 24 hours per week for 5 weeks in business supervised practice experiences.  The Business experience will include sales, marketing, food distribution, food delivery services, and/or other aspects of the the business sector as appropriate for the organization.  Possible rotations include: 

  • KSU College of Education, Health, and Human Services Public Relations

  • KSU Dining Services

  • KSU Food for Thought Cyber Cafe

  • KSU Nutrition Outreach Program

  • Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) in Private Practice

  • Wellness/Recreation Programs

  • School Programs

  • Organizations that are expanding Nutrition Services

Electives - 144 Total Hours 

Interns select 144 hours (6weeks) during the academic semester to complete elective rotations. Electives can be selected from current site options, or interns can work with the Internship Director to create an individualized practice experience to fit their interest areas. There is also the option of doing an International Elective practice experience, which would have to be approved by the Internship Director and would be an additional expense to the intern. The following are some possible options for elective rotations:

  • International Experience-Uganda
  • Kent State University Campus Kitchen
  • Meals on Wheels
  • Wellness Program
  • Dairy Council Mid East
  • Recreation Centers
  • KSU Outreach
  • Outpatient Eating Disorders
  • KSU KIDS Camp
  • Journalism Experience
  • Food Bank
  • Functional Medicine
  • Integrative Medicine
  • Farmer’s Market
  • Head Start
  • Pediatric Diabetes Camp
  • Bariatric Experience
  • Legislation
  • Academy of N & D National Meeting
  • Head Start
  • Health Department
  • KSU Nutrition Outreach Program
  • Outpatient Oncology

MASTER OF SCIENCE REQUIREMENTS

Master of Science Core Requirements 

NUTR     63527 Dietetic Practice: Clinical           63526 Dietetic Practice: Management          

               63525 Dietetic Practice: Community    63520 Macronutrient Nutrition                    

               63521 Nutrition and Disease: Clinical Applications    

               63519 Advanced Study of Micronutrients          

               63592 Dietetic Internship                    61018 Techniques of Research

EDUC       65510 Statistics

HM          63024 Management of Food and Nutrition Services

ELECTIVES In consultation with Advisor, select 6 hours as elective coursework.

NUTR   63523 Nutrition & Gerontology         53520 Nutrition for Fitness          

             53515 Community Nutrition         53518 Maternal and Child Nutrition           

             51095 Special Topic: Functional Foods & Botanicals             

             51095 Special Topic: Evaluating Nutrition Literature     

* Other clearly related graduate courses as determined by Advisor.   

THESIS OPTION/MASTER'S PROJECT OPTION

Students can select a Thesis Option * or a Master's Project Option **

*The thesis Option is intended for students to have the opportunity to conduct original research.  Approval of a thesis proposal by the student's thesis committee is required, as is the successful completion of an oral examination conducted by the thesis committee.

**The Master's Project Option is intended for students to approach research in a more applied manner.  The presentation and interpretation of original research is not required.  However, approval of the intended project by the student's master's project committee is required, as is the successful completion of an oral final examination conducted by the master's project committee

PROGRAM CONCENTRATION: LEADERSHIP

Beginning Fall 2009 the Kent State University Combined Masters/Dietetic Internship Program will provide the addition of a Leadership Concentration, which has been approved by the The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Dietetic Interns will be guided throughout their practice experiences to develop formal leadership knowledge and skills that they can bring with them as they begin their dietetics career and beyond. This concentration will add to the preparation of Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) to position themselves as the nutrition expert and leader in any future work environment.

PROGRAM MISSION

The Kent State University combined Master's of Science/ Dietetic Internship Program is dedicated to providing advanced professional education, broadening intellectual perspectives, and promoting ethical professional practice based on humanitarian values.

At Kent State University, a major focus is to foster a learning environment where students and interns are taught to respond to social, cultural, intellectual, and technological challenges. In addition, emphasis is placed on the development of skills for continuing professional development and enhanced ability, including leadership, to respond to the versatile demands of the dietetics profession.

The program at Kent State University is designed to train dietetic interns to become entry-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) with the added strength of a Master of Science education. Throughout the 21-month program, interns will be provided with a professional and academic environment in which to develop the skills needed to become competent in the areas of nutrition therapy, community dietetics, management, business, and leadership.

GOALS AND LEARNING OUTCOMES

The goal of the Kent State University Program is to provide dietetic interns with the resources and experiences needed to develop the knowledge, skills, and principles needed to become competent Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN), with the abilities to practice in a variety of settings. After completion of the program, interns will demonstrate a broad knowledge of:

  •     nutrition and biological sciences
  •     pathophysiology of disease
  •     management theories and practices
  •     food and nutrition research principles
  •     leadership

and will be able to apply this knowledge, skill, and principles to sound nutrition practice.

DIETETIC INTERNSHIP PROGRAM GOALS

Program Goal 1: To graduate competent entry-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) 


Program Objectives for Goal 1:

  • At least 80% of program interns complete program/degree requirements within 31-months 
  • Of graduates who seek employment, 80% are employed in nutrition and dietetics or related fields within 12 months of graduation. 
  • 80% of program graduates take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion 
  • The program's one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within on year of first attempt) on the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80%
  • At least 80% of employers will rate graduates as competent (i.e a score of 3 or > on a scale of 1-5) when surveyed one-year post graduation
  • At least 80% of graduates will rate that they felt prepared (i.e. a score 3 or > on a 1-5 scale) when surveyed one-year post graduation. 

Program Goal 2: To develop entry-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDN) with a foundation of knowledge and skills in Leadership.


Program Objectives for Goal 2:

  • At least 80% of interns will identify an increased knowledge base of leadership (using a YES/NO scale)
  • At least 80% of interns will affirm (using YES/NO scale) that they have utilized their leadership knowledge (that they obtained during the internship) in one or more professional settings during the internship 
  • At least 80% of graduates will affirm (using a YES/NO scale) that they have utilized their leadership knowledge (that they obtained during the internship) in one or more professional settings post internship 
  • At least 80% of employers will rate 3 or > in response to graduates exhibiting leadership skills in the practice setting 

Accordingly, the Learning Outcomes of the Kent State University Program are to train the intern to:

  •     Integrate professionalism skills and high ethical standards in the practice of dietetics
  •     Develop effective education and communication skills in the practice of dietetics
  •     Manage an improvement-oriented and outcome-based organization
  •     Manage market resources and product lines
  •     Manage food service operations
  •     Provide appropriate Medical Nutrition Therapy to individuals throughout the life span
  •     Provide nutrition programs for population and community groups
  •     Develop effective leadership abilities

Program outcomes data are available upon request. 

ACCREDITATION

The Kent State University Didactic Program in Dietetics and Dietetic Internship is currently accredited by:

The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND):

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
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Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 60606-6995
312-899-5400

https://www.eatrightpro.org/acend

Eat Right

For more information on the pathway and requirements needed to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), please visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website.