Dietetics

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B.S. in Foods & Nutrition, Dietetics Option

The California State Polytechnic University, Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona), Department of Human Nutrition and Food Science (HNFS), welcomes you as a Foods & Nutrition, Dietetics Option major, leading to a Bachelor of Science degree. The Cal Poly Pomona Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND).

The Didactic Program in Dietetics provides the necessary coursework to apply for a Dietetic Internship. The DPD coursework can be seen below. DPD programs require accreditation because dietetics is a complex profession that pertains to the health of our nation and therefore requires that the training adhere to national standards. These national standards are determined and evaluated by The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (for educational programs that lead to both the Registered Dietitian (RD) and the Dietetic Technician, Registered (DTR) credential.

The Cal Poly Pomona DPD program has a strong record in terms of producing high quality students with a strong foundation in the sciences who are successful in both dietetic internship and graduate school. The field of dietetics requires that individuals learn and apply both the science and the art of nutrition and food in order to meet the nutritional needs and improve the health of our nation. Students with an aptitude for science, who derive satisfaction from being part of the healthcare or food service management team, and who enjoy working with and counseling people, will find a career in dietetics rewarding Our state of the art curriculum prepares students for applying to a Dietetic internship, graduate school or a career in food service, food production or public health.

Graduates of this major who complete the DPD receive a pre-professional verification statement which makes them eligible to apply to accredited Dietetic Internships. It is during the Dietetic Internship that the student gains practical training in diverse areas of dietetic practice. Only after the satisfactory completion of all three: a Baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution, DPD coursework and an accredited Dietetic Internship, is the student eligible to take the Registered Dietitian exam. The only way to earn the credential of Registered Dietitian (RD) is to pass this national examination. The DPD program is the first step in becoming credentialed as a Registered Dietitian, because it provides only the classroom education component. The student who has received their pre-professional verification statement may also apply to take the Dietetic Technician, Registered, exam (see Dietetic Technician tab for more information).

The Director of the Didactic Program is:

Bonny Burns-Whitmore, DrPH, RD
Director, Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
Professor
Building 2, Room 119
Phone: (909) 869-3793
Fax: (909) 869-5078
Email: bburnswhitmo@csupomona.edu

Mission and Goals of the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)

Program Mission : The mission of the Didactic Program in Dietetics is to prepare students to become entry level Registered Dietitians, who possess the qualities of competence and compassion requisite to a health professional.

Goals : The goals of the DPD are:

  • Goal 1: Prepare competent graduates capable of successful entry into and completion of a dietetic internship program.
  • Goal 2: Prepare graduates for entry into food and nutrition-related careers and/or admittance to graduate school in nutrition-related disciplines.
  • Goal 3: Recruit, retain and graduate a diverse population of undergraduate dietetic students with the cultural understanding required to meet the nutritional needs of the region's population in order to promote health and prevent and mitigate disease.
  • The DPD program follows objectives that are appropriate measures to assess achievements of these goals. For information on what the objectives are, how they are measured or past measurement results, contact the DPD Director, Dr. Bonny Burns-Whitmore at bburnswhitmo@csupomona.edu or 909-869-3793.

Accreditation

The DPD at Cal Poly Pomona is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). Contact information for ACEND is 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60060-6995, phone 800-877-1600, Ext.5400. The website for ACEND is: http://www.eatright.org/cps/rde/xchg/ada/hs.xsl/CADE.html

In order to maintain the accreditation status, DPD must demonstrate that it meets its mission, goals, and measurable outcomes. Outcome measures include program retention and completion rates, placement in Dietetic Internships, graduate school placement, pass-rate on Registration Examination for Dietitians and responses on graduate and Internship Director surveys; this information is available by request.

Want to be a registered Dietitian? Steps necessary to become a Registered Dietitian (RD)

Individuals must successfully complete all three steps to become a Registered Dietitian (RD):

  • Step 1: Completion of Didactic Program requirements with Verification Statement and completion of a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • Step 2: Acceptance into and successful completion of a Dietetic Internship.
  • Step 3: Successful passing of the national Registration Examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). Original verification statements from both the DPD program and the Dietetic Internship must be submitted before taking the RD exam. http://www.eatright.org/BecomeanRDorDTR/content.aspx?id=8143

Career Opportunities

The Registered Dietitian (RD) is a nationally recognized health professional that specializes in the promotion and integration of proper nutrition practices. With training in the areas of human nutrition, food science, biology, chemistry, social sciences, management, and education, the RD is capable of incorporating this information into practical working solutions for healthy living. The RD works with individuals and groups from diverse cultures with varying concerns to help them make positive lifestyle changes. There are many employment opportunities in food and nutrition for the Registered Dietitian, each differing by target population, level of expertise, and primary location. Some career options include:

  • Clinical Dietetics : Clinical Dietitians utilize Medical Nutrition Therapy to accurately assess nutritional needs and determine nutritional diagnoses. They create both individualized and group nutritional programs, which include counseling and outcome evaluation, based on the health needs of patients or residents. Clinical dietitians may work in hospitals, nursing homes or outpatient settings, and with other healthcare professionals.
  • Community Nutrition : A Community Dietitian applies human nutrition knowledge to help people in the community meet their food and nutrition needs . These dietitians plan, organize and implement aspects of nutrition policies and programs designed to prevent disease and improve health at the community level . Community dietitians work to promote public health in clinics, government and non-profit agencies with diverse groups of individuals .
  • Food Service Management : Dietitians working in food service management plan, implement, and evaluate meal programs and food service systems. They may be responsible for budgeting and buying food, as well as for carrying out other business-related tasks such as employee training, staff management, and developing policies and standards within the workplace. They may work in healthcare facilities, schools, senior centers, hotels or restaurants.
  • Business and Industry : Dietitians may be employed to work in a variety of settings, including sales, marketing, public relations, research and development and production quality control . Dietitians may also work with food and pharmaceutical companies, marketing associations and food service providers to develop, promote and market food and nutritional products.
  • Private Practice/Consultation : Dietitians working in private practice or on a consultant basis are generally self-employed under their own private consulting business; however, previous experience in dietetic practice is necessary.
  • Research : Research Dietitians are involved with development, implementation, and assessment of nutrition-related research projects. These dietitians may work in a clinical research center in a hospital, private company, or academic center. Advanced degrees are usually required for research and university-based jobs.
  • Nutrition Jobs for Those without RD Certification : Obtaining the RD certification is required for many jobs within the fields of health and nutrition. However, there are career opportunities for those who receive their Bachelor's degree and do not complete the requirements for becoming an RD. These include Food Service Supervisor, Community Nutritionist for organizations like WIC, Diet Clerk or Dietetic Technician, Registered, and other various positions within food and health businesses.

Working in dietetics offers a rewarding career with a promising future. Appreciation for the profession is growing, translating into a greater need for and utilization of nutrition experts in health promotion practices throughout the country. As public interest continues to move in the direction of improving nutrition and health, emerging employment opportunities are ideal for the knowledge, training and versatility of the Registered Dietitian. For more information on the RD, visit http:www.eatright.org.

Cal Poly Pomona Course Requirements for the Didactic Program in Dietetics

Foods and Nutrition

FN 100 Intro to the Profession

FN 121/121L Intro to Foods

FN 235 Nutrition

FN 263 Intro to Research Methods

FST 321 /321L Experimental Food Science

FST 325 Food Safety and Current Issues

FN 328/328L Culture/Meal Patterns

FN 335 Nutrition of the Life Cycle

FN 345/345L Nutrition Education

FN 346/346L Community Nutrition

FN 355 Nutrition Counseling

FN 357/357L Quantity Food Production/Lab

FN 358/358L Food & Equipment Purchasing

FN 359/359L Food & Nutrition Administration

FN 433 Advanced Nutrient Metab. I

FN 434 Advanced Nutrient Metab. II

FN 435 Advanced Nutrient Metab III

FN 443/443L Medical Nutr. Therapy I/lab

FN 444/444L Medical Nutr. Therapy II/lab

 

Supporting Coursework

Communication:

COM 100 Public Speaking or higher level communication course

English:

ENG 104: Freshman English I

ENG 105: Freshman English II

or equivalent coursework in writing and critical thinking

Mathematics:

STA 120: Statistics

ABM 224: Accounting for Agribusiness or equivalent introductory accounting course

Biology:

BIO 115/115L: Basic Biology/Lab

BIO 300 Genetics & Human Issues OR BIO 303 Genetics OR FN437 Nutritional Genomics

MIC 201/201L Basic Microbiology

BIO 235/235L Human Physiology

Chemistry:

CHM 121/121L General Chem I/Lab

CHM 122/122L General Chem II/Lab

CHM 201/250L Elements of Organic Chem/Lab

Social Sciences :

PSY 201: General Psychology or higher level psychology course

SOC 201 Principles of Sociology OR ANT 102 Intro Cultural Anthropology or higher level sociology or anthropology course

 

Curriculum Road Maps

Curriculum road maps can be found at:

http://www.csupomona.edu/~academic/sheets/1112ag.shtml

DPD Handbook

The DPD handbook is available by request from the DPD Director, Dr. Bonny Burns-Whitmore. All enrolled dietetic students are referred to this document in FN 100 as well. There are also several hard copies of the DPD handbook available in the HNFS Department Office 7-110.

Dietetic Internship Application Process

As stated above, the only way to be eligible to take the RD exam is to successfully be accepted into and complete a Dietetic Internship (DI), which is also called a Supervised Practice.

Cal Poly Pomona has an accredited DI, which has 15 seats. More information on it can be found at http://www.csupomona.edu/~dietinternship/application_info.html

The DI Director is Dr. Sharonda Wallace. Her contact information is:

Sharonda P. Wallace, PhD, MPH, RD
Dietetic Internship Director
Human Nutrition & Food Science Department
Building 7, Room 116
California State Polytechnic University, Pomona
3801 W. Temple Avenue
Pomona, CA 91768
Email: spwallace@csupomona.edu

The Dietetic Internship (DI) is a post-baccalaureate supervised practice program. An ACEND accredited DI is typically a full-time and non-paid commitment for the duration of six to twelve months. Upon completion of a DI, students are eligible to take the National Registration Examination for Dietitians administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration.

The selection process for DI applicants is very competitive. Students should plan ahead in order to build an effective career portfolio during their undergraduate experience. To meet minimum eligibility requirements for a DI, individuals must complete the ACEND accredited DPD coursework and earn their Bachelor's degree.

In addition, strong applicants usually have a GPA at or above 3.2; paid and volunteer work experiences in dietetics; demonstrated effective leadership, professional, and communication skills; shown commitment to community service and the practice of dietetics; and received strong recommendations from faculty and employers. The student must have met the minimum requirements and obtained a Verification Statement by the time the DI begins.

There are two application times each year. For programs beginning in January-February, applications are to be completed in September. For programs beginning in July-September, applications will be completed in February. Applying to programs that compliment your qualifications and skills will increase your chances of being accepted to a DI. DPD students are encouraged to apply to a DI anywhere in the nation. They are advised to find a DI that fits their financial, academic and geographic needs.

To better assist students, the DPD program at CPP provides information workshops twice a year to discuss the DI application and decision-making processes. The department also offers a one-unit course every fall (FN 431 – Dietetic Internship Exploration) to provide students with the information needed to successfully pursue a DI. Students are also strongly encouraged to meet individually with the DPD program director and faculty to help them assess their potential to obtain a DI.

Dietetic Internship (DI) Availability

In recent years, the competition for DI positions has increased. Data on the April 2009 first-round match reported 4120 applicants for 2195 DI positions, meaning 50% of applicants were unmatched. This outcome reflects a growing increase in applicants for a fairly stable number of DI positions. Please see the “Availability of DI Positions” summary at http://www.eatright.org/CADE/content.aspx?id=4294967919&terms=availability .

The data on Cal Poly Pomona's DPD student success rate of acceptance into the DI, as well as the pass rate on the RD exam, is available upon request from the DPD Director.

Expenses & Tuition

For complete information on expenses and tuition at Cal Poly Pomona, please go to the Tuition & Fees page at www.csupomona.edu/~student-accounting/tuition.shtml.

Additional fees: There is a lab fee of $30 for FN 121 Lab.

Academic & University Policies

http://www.csupomona.edu/~policies/

Contact Information

Bonny Burns-Whitmore, DrPH, RD
Director, Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
Professor
Building 2, Room 119
Phone: (909) 869-3793
Fax: (909) 869-5078
Email: bburnswhitmo@csupomona.edu

Martin Sancho-Madriz, PhD
Department Chair and Professor
Building 7, Room 114
Phone: (909) 869-2167
Fax: (909) 869-5078
Email: mfsancho@csupomona.edu

 

The information on this web site is provided by the Department of Human Nutrition & Food Science at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; updated on August 20, 2012.