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The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics

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Dietetics

Dietetic Students

Program Description

Dietetics is an allied health field that builds on the foundation of life and social sciences. The Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) at Western Michigan University leads to a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree and is accredited by Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The Dietetics Program meets the Standards of Education of ACEND and graduates are eligible to apply for accredited internship programs.

Students must complete a dietetic internship and pass the Registration Examination for Dietitians in order to qualify for certification as a Registered Dietitian (R.D.). Students apply for admission to internships during the last semester of their senior year or after graduation. Appointment to internships is competitive. Students are selected on a variety of criteria including grade point average (GPA), work experience, and recommendation letters. Most dietetic internships require that applicants have a GPA of at least 3.0. Successful applicants from this undergraduate program have had an average GPA of 3.5.

Program Mission and Goals

The mission of the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) is to provide graduates with foundational knowledge in dietetics and related disciplines, and the opportunity to develop professional skills and attitudes that will prepare them for post-graduate internships, advanced degree programs, and entry-level employment in dietetics related fields. 

Program Goals:

Goal 1:  The program will prepare graduates who are competent for entry into dietetic internship programs, and first professional employment in dietetics related fields.

Expected outcomes:

Goal 2: The program will prepare graduates who participate in professional development and lifelong learning and contribute to the pool of allied health and food and nutrition professionals in Michigan and beyond its borders.    

Expected outcomes:

Accreditation

Western Michigan University's DPD is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics through 2022.

For more information about accreditation of dietetics education programs contact:

The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND):
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 60606-6995
(800) 877-1600 Ext. 5400
www.eatright.org/CADE/

Admission Requirements

Students are admitted to the pre-dietetics program for the first two years. They apply for admission to the dietetics program (years 3 and 4) at the end of the second semester of sophomore year. The admission criteria and application procedures are described below.

Minimum Admission Requirements:

  1. Acceptance to Western Michigan University
  2. Attainment of a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above on a 4.0 scale.
  3. Completion of a letter of application stating reasons for selecting dietetics as a career and short- and long-term professional goals.
  4. Completion of the following pre-dietetics courses at WMU or the equivalent of these at another accredited college or university:

    Required Pre-Dietetics Courses

    MATH 1110
    FCS 1000
    ENGL 1050
    BIOS 1120
    COM 1700
    PSY 1000 
    CHEM 1100/1110
    SOC 2000
    FCS 1650
    FCS 2250 or
    CS 1000
    CHEM 1120/1130
    BIOS 2400
    BIOS 2320
    FCS 2600
    CHEM 3700/3710  

    Algebra II
    Career Seminar in Dietetics
    Thought and Writing
    Principles of Biology
    Interpersonal Communications
    General Psychology
    General Chemistry I / Lab
    Principles of Sociology
    Culinary Skills
    Computer Applications
     
    General Chemistry II / Lab
    Human Physiology
    Microbiology of Infectious Diseases
    Nutrition
    Introduction to Organic Chemistry / Lab

  5. Of the above listed courses the following must be completed with a minimum letter grade of "C":

    ENGL 1050
    BIOS 1120
    CHEM 1100/1110
    SOC 2000
    CHEM 1120/1130
    BIOS 2400
    BIOS 2320
    FCS 2600
    CHEM 3700/3710  

    Thought and Writing
    Principles of Biology
    General Chemistry I / Lab
    Principles of Sociology  
    General Chemistry II / Lab
    Human Physiology
    Microbiology of Infectious Diseases
    Nutrition
    Introduction to Organic Chemistry / Lab

  6. Completion of majority (70%) of WMU general education requirements is strongly suggested prior to applying to the dietetics program.

Application Process:

Applicants must complete the DPD application form and write a letter of application. In addition official transcripts from all universities and colleges attended and student copies of WMU transcripts must be submitted along with the application material. Applications will not be reviewed until all application materials have been received. The application deadline is May 15 of each academic year. WMU pre-dietetics students can submit all their application materials in hard copy, and e-mail a pdf copy of their WMU transcripts to the Program Director, Dr. Rojhani, once spring course grades are posted.   All applications are reviewed and admission determined by the DPD selection committee, consisting of full-time and part-time DPD faculty. Applications may be obtained online.

Application should include the following:

  1. A completed DPD application form word.
  2. Official transcripts from all universities and colleges attended, and student copies of WMU transcripts.
  3. A word-processed letter of application (maximum length 11/2 pages in font size 12 and double spaced) stating reasons for selecting dietetics as a career and short- and long-term professional goals.
  4. A non-refundable application fee of $20 (make check payable to the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences).
  5. Please place all materials in an envelope and send to the address below.

Note: Students officially admitted to the dietetics program must complete the TB screening and complete a background check.  The TB screening can be completed through the Sindecuse Health Center on campus, or through a private physician or clinic.  The cost for background check is $70 and can be completed through WMU Public Safety Office.  Students will not be allowed to register for courses until the above screening and background checks are completed and results provided to DPD director, Dr. Arezoo Rojhani.  In addition all students admitted to the dietetics program will be required to become student members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Application materials should be sent to:

Dr. Arezoo Rojhani, Ph.D., R.D.
Associate Professor, DPD Director
Department of Family and Consumer Sciences
1903 W. Michigan Ave.
Kalamazoo, MI 49008-5322

Expenses:

Careers

Registered Dietitians are eligible for positions in hospitals, commercial food establishments, long-term care facilities, food industry, government sponsored child nutrition programs, colleges and universities dining services; the armed forces; community health agencies.

Certification

Graduates must complete the internship and pass the registration examination for dietitians in order to recieve the Registered Dietitian (R.D.) credential.

For Current Students

Classes

Faculty

Graduation Requirements

In order to receive the BS Degree in Dietetics the following graduation requirements must be met:

  1. Completion of all courses required for BS in Dietetics degree including general education courses, with no incomplete (I) grades (see current degree requirements)
  2. As of fall 2010, students admitted to the pre-dietetics program need to officially apply for admission to the professional component of DPD and be admitted.
  3. Completion of at least 122 semester hours of credit, of which at least 60 semester hours must be credits from four-year baccalaureate degree granting institutions and at least 30 semester hours must be credits from WMU. Of the last 30 semester credit hours required for the degree, at least 10 semester hours must be WMU credits.
  4. A maximum of 15 credit hours of correspondence or self-instructional course work may be applied towards completion of degree requirements. This rule does not apply to online courses.
  5. Attainment of a minimum of 2.0 grade point average in the Major and cumulatively.
  6. All courses on the Dietetics Program Guide must be completed with a minimum letter grade of "C".
  7. Student must pay all fees owed to the university.
  8. Student must complete all graduation-related paperwork including graduation audit.
  9. Western Michigan University does not impose a time limit on completion of a Bachelor of Science Degree. If a student does not take courses for one calendar year or more, then decides to complete degree, he/she is allowed to follow the catalog used at the time of initial admission. However, if the DPD curriculum has changed during student's absence, he/she will not be issued a Verification of Program Completion, unless additional course(s) deemed necessary to update knowledge are completed.

WMU DPD will issue a Verification Statement (completion document) to all students who successfully complete the requirements of the Didactic Program in Dietetics. Students will use this document to prove their completion of the program for the application to Dietetic Internship programs and eligibility to take the Dietetic Technician Registered Examination. Please see the link for more information.

A verification statement is issued upon successful completion of all DPD requirements and graduation from WMU. Six copies of the verification statement are mailed to each graduate in early August. Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) requires that all DPD Programs retain an original copy of each student’s verification statement indefinitely. Verification statements can only be issued for students who completed at least 21 upper division credits of their professional dietetics courses at WMU. Verification statements are required by Dietetic Internships and for professional membership in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) and for eligibility to take the Dietetic Technician Registered (DTR) exam. Students requesting verification statements, for application to internships or for DTR testing may be asked to take additional courses to update their knowledge and skills before a verification statement is issued if they completed their DPD requirements 5 or more years ago. In the past the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) would not accept a verification statement that was more than 5 years old as part of an individual’s eligibility to take the RD exam. Although this is no longer a finite policy, dietetic internship programs may require additional coursework for students seeking a verification statement who graduated five or more years ago and are now planning on applying for dietetic internship placement. Even though your university may choose to issue you a verification statement, the Dietetic Internship may choose to NOT to accept an applicant based on recency of education. You will need to review program specific materials information and/or contact individual programs to determine if they have policies that include recency of education time limits.

Internship

Program graduates are eligible to apply for post-graduate internship programs. Students apply for admission to internships during the last semester of their senior year or after graduation.

Links

Professional Organizations

Student Organizations

Student Dietetic Association (SDA)

SDA is the active student group in which dietetics majors participate. Membership in SDA is the stepping stone for involvement in the profession. SDA provides the students with the opportunity:

Monthly meetings provide a vehicle for planning and coordinating the associations' activities.

Dietetic Community Service Program (DCSP)

Through DCSP, WMU pre-dietetics and dietetic students are linked to dietitians and food service professionals in Kalamazoo and surrounding areas for mentorship opportunities. The experience gained from participation in DCSP better prepares students for a future career in dietetics.