Dietetic Internship Program
We are located at the award-winning Medical University of South Carolina, the south's oldest medical school in historic Charleston. This dietetic internship, accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), is designed to prepare students to become a "Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist" (RDN). Upon completion, graduates are eligible to sit for the national RDN exam administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). Both ACEND and CDR are affiliations of the world's largest organization of food and nutrition professionals, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics is comitted to improving the nation's health and advancing the profession of dietetics through research, education, practice, and advocacy.
MISSION AND GOALS:
Our mission is to prepare entry-level dietitians using evidence-based clinical, food service, and public health nutrition experiences among interns from diverse backgrounds while serving the community. Our program goals include 1) preparing graduates with knowledge and skills to be competent dietitians and 2) building leadership and public advocacy among the dietetics workforce, particularly in South Carolina.
We offer a non-credit, non-degree, post-baccalaureate certification program resulting in a 'Verification Statement' required to sit for the RD exam. This internship is an on-site program for eligible college-degree graduates (see eligibility requirements below). We accept 10-12 interns per year for this 10.5 month (44-45 weeks), 1200+ hour, full-time supervised practicum commencing every August (applications accepted every February).
This internship is comprised of over 22 rotations in 15 different healthcare settings under the supervision of 40+ qualified preceptors. We pride our internship for its large variety of diverse experiences and training opportunities.
We are pleased to offer two concentrations: "Community Nutrition Promotion" (accepting 3-4 interns) and "Clinical Medical Nutrition Therapy" (accepting 7-8 interns) . For the August 2016 start date, the CLINICAL-emphasis interns will begin Monday, August 15, 2016 while the COMMUNITY-emphasis will begin Tues, Sept 6, 2016. Read more about our curriculum offerings and our application process to either or both concentrations.
The path to becoming a "Registered Dietitian/Nutritionist" is systematic. Applicants for this internship (all internships in the US) MUST have (or will have prior to our Fall start date) 1) a bachelor's degree at minimum (in any field), AND 2) successful completion of an ACEND-accredited "Didactic Program in Dietetics" (DPD). A DPD consists of at least 2-3 semesters, depending on courses already taken, of "hard" science prerequisites and core nutrition courses to prepare students for a dietetic internship such as this one. MUSC does not offer a DPD (none in Charleston area), but you can search for traditional and online/distance DPD programs here. DPDs CANNOT be replaced by any other training or certifications, such as nutrition degress from non-ACEND accredited program, personal training or human performance training, culinary certification, etc. More details on eligibility are described here.
We successfully meet program goals. For instance, 99% of graduates have passed the RD board exam (97% passing upon first attempt). Approximately 85% of graduates seeking a professional career as a Registered Dietitian after graduation found jobs within 3 months. Of those who found careers, over 35% actively practice in South Carolina, a state prevalent in hypertension, diabetes, and stroke. After working in the field for 1 year, 93% of employers of our graduates (and graduates themselves) feel this program trained them appropriately for entry-level practice. Finally, over 75% of our graduates become leaders in their field by actively participating in local, state, or national nutrition and healthcare organizations. Data supporting these outcomes can be made available to students, parents, and educators upon request.
Browse this web site, watch our VIRTUAL TOUR (note: produced before we decided to offer a community nutrition promotion concentration), attend our ANNUAL OPEN HOUSE (next offering: December 18, 2015), or read why past applicants chose this program. Candidates may also schedule an individual appointment, in-person or phone, with the Director with at least 2 weeks notice: