The Bachelor of Science in Nutrition Science offers two pathways to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) including a Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) and an Accelerated BS/MS Coordinated Program in Nutrition and Dietetics. The Nutrition Science program also serves as a pathway for Pre-Physician Assistant, Athletic Trainer and Certified Dietary Manager. NDSU maintains a long-standing reputation in food and nutrition. Since 1925, NDSU has educated nationwide leaders in the dietetics profession.
The Accelerated BS/MS Coordinated Program in Nutrition and Dietetics and the Didactic Program in Dietetics are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics, 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL, 60606; (800) 877-1600 ext. 5400; https://www.eatrightpro.org/acend.
What will I learn in the Nutrition Science program at NDSU?
North Dakota State University’s Nutrition Science program provides learners evidence-based knowledge and skills in the many areas of nutrition and dietetics including medical nutrition therapy, foodservice management, and community nutrition. These programs prepare students to understand how food and nutrition can prevent and treat disease as well as how to maintain and promote good health. Nutrition Science is a people-oriented, science-focused and evidence-based field.
What is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN)?
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics defines dietetics as “the science and art of applying the principles of nutrition to health.” The RDN credential is required for most careers where providing nutritional services to individuals and groups is needed.
Possible careers in nutrition and dietetics include:
- Sports nutrition – professional sports teams, K-12 sports, collegiate sports
- Healthcare – hospitals, clinics, long-term care
- Foodservice – hospitals, early childhood and school nutrition, long-term care
- Community – public health programs, wellness and health promotion
- Private practice – consulting firms, client counseling for special populations, fitness facilities, public speaking
How do I become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist?
There are five steps involved in becoming an RDN.
- Complete a bachelor's degree and receive a verification statement from an ACEND-accredited program (Didactic Program in Dietetics, Coordinated Program, Future Graduate Program, Foreign or International Dietitian Education Program). Note, effective January 1, 2024, a graduate degree will be required to be eligible to take the Commission on Dietetic Registration exam.
- NDSU currently offers a Didactic Program in Dietetics.
- Complete an ACEND-accredited supervised practice dietetic internship or individualized supervised practice pathway. Supervised practice/experiential learning can also be completed when combined with the Coordinated Program, Future Graduate Program, and International Dietitian Education Program.
- NDSU currently offers a BS/MS Accelerated Coordinated Program in Nutrition and Dietetics where you can complete all the steps required to take the registration exam in compliance with the 2024 master’s requirement
- Pass the Commission on Dietetic Registration exam.
- Gain licensure in your state of practice, if applicable.
- Maintain continuing education.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the number of jobs for registered dietitians and nutritionists will increase by 11% between 2020 and 2030. This projection indicates a significant need for more RDN’s in the field to help combat preventable disease and conditions on the rise such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, certain types of cancer and osteoporosis.
NDSU Graduate Career Outlook
Placement surveys conducted in the Department of Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences at NDSU show that more than 90% of graduates from the Coordinated Program in Nutrition and Dietetics obtain employment in their field within four months of graduation and more than 90% of graduates from the Didactic Program in Dietetics who apply are admitted into a dietetic internship within one year of graduation. During college, many opportunities are available for students to obtain experience in the field. Some of those opportunities are through food service management companies, Public Health Service and University Dining Services.