Dietitian and client

Dietetic Internship (DI)

Helping others achieve healthier lifestyles.

The ACU Dietetic Internship (DI) graduate certificate program at CitySquare in Dallas equips you with the knowledge and practical skills needed to become a registered dietitian.

The mission of the Abilene Christian University Dietetic Internship is to equip interns who model Christian values to become Registered Dietitians/Nutritionists to lead and empower individuals, especially those with economic need, to achieve better nutrition and healthier lifestyles.

Throughout the 44-week internship program, you and your classmates will focus on “Poverty and Community,” the only program in the country to include poverty as part of its area of study.

Your academic and clinical training here is rooted in Christian values, and you will be prepared to serve the majority of the population, but especially those that have disabilities or are in poverty.

Consistent with the mission of CitySquare, you will focus your time on the issues of hunger, health, housing and hope:

  • Hunger - work in the Opportunity Center Food Bank and the Summer Feeding Programs through CitySquare.
  • Health - Along with the clinical experiences, an outpatient counseling rotation will address health of the clientele using knowledge gained in the clinical rotations such as bariatric, cardiac, endocrinology, intensive care, oncology, pediatric, renal, surgical and general medical.
  • Hope - Gaining an education and skills can give people hope. You will be instrumental in helping teach basic culinary and foodservice skills in the food production kitchen and café at the Opportunity Center at CitySquare.
  • Housing - Indirectly, housing will be addressed through your involvement in teaching basic selection, procurement and preparation of healthful meals for home use in the CitySquare demonstration kitchen.

Learn more about ACU’s Dietetic Internship Certificate by watching these videos featuring our students and faculty.

Accreditation

The Abilene Christian University Dietetic Internship has been granted Candidacy Status for Accreditation by The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND).

Accreditation includes self-analysis, preparation of a self-study report, and an on-site evaluation visit by a team of professional peers. Dietetics educators and practitioners, appointed by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) board, participate in the peer review process to determine if a program is achieving its own educational objectives and meeting the accreditation standards. The ACEND board accredits programs that are able to meet these standards.

Candidacy status is awarded after review of an eligibility application and self-study report and an on-site evaluation indicate that the program is progressing toward compliance with the Accreditation Standards and demonstrates institutional readiness to implement the proposed program. The Abilene Christian University Dietetic Internship has been granted Candidacy status.  After candidacy for accreditation is granted, the program may enroll students. Students on premises and enrolled after candidacy is granted will be considered graduates of an accredited program on successful completion of the program.

If you would like to be notified when further details become available, please contact Graduate Admissions at 325-674-6911, toll free at 855-822-3267, or email us at gradinfo@acu.edu.

Completion of the dietetic internship allows interns to sit for the Registration Examination for Dietitians. Application for state certification/licensure (if applicable) may be made after credentialing.

The contact information for ACEND is as follows:

Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL  60606-6995
(800) 877-1600, ext. 5400
www.acend@eatright.org

 

Program Overview

Credit hours 15.0
Degree Graduate Certificate in Dietetic Internship (CER)
Program length 1 year; View Program Schedule
DICAS application deadline for Fall 2017 February 15, 2017
Tuition and Fees Financial Aid is available to students through loans. For further information on financial aid, contact Student Financial Services at 325-674-2643.   

Coursework

You will take courses such as:

  • Weight Management
  • Nutrition and Poverty
  • Dietetic Internship
  • Nutrition Research

After successfully completing the five graduate courses and dietetic internship rotation requirements, the intern will be provided with a Certificate of Completion and a Verification Statement indicating their eligibility to sit for the Registration Examination for Dietitians required for credentialing. State licensure may be gained after passing the Registration Examination for Dietitians, or the graduate may sit for a State Licensure Examination.

View All Courses

Successful Completion of Dietetic Internship

In order to successfully complete the CitySquare Dietetic Internship, all interns must receive an A or B on the graduate courses, complete all rotation evaluation forms and present the completed and signed evaluation forms (including self-evaluations) to the Dietetic Internship Director within the designated time frame; and have a satisfactory rating or above on all evaluations. The Dietetic Internship director will provide additional evaluations on projects and research that are required throughout the internship.

Students who successfully complete online classes typically have the following characteristics:

  • Self-motivated
  • Excellent time management skills
  • Self-disciplined
  • Enjoy being “online”
  • Have at least several hours each day to dedicate to study and assignments

Completion Requirements and Credit for Prior Learning or Competence

Each intern must successfully complete all supervised practice rotations and graduate courses associated with the DI.  The Abilene Christian University Dietetic Internship does not have a policy for assessing prior learning or competence.  No credit is given for prior learning experiences or competence.  The maximum amount of time for completing all DI requirements is 66 weeks from the time the student begins the internship.

Goals and Objectives

  1. The program will prepare graduates to have commitment to utilize nutrition-related knowledge to improve the quality of the health and well-being among those who have limited resources. This goal is congruent with the Dietetic Internship mission concerning helping those in poverty.
    1. Objective 1.1 — Eighty percent of graduates will be offering services to those in need in their church or their community within 1 year of completing the internship.
  2. The program will prepare graduates to obtain employment in dietetics or related field. This goal fits with the mission in the preparation of graduates for successful employment in the field.
    1. Objective 2.1 — One hundred percent of interns will successfully complete the internship requirements within the time frame of the internship, or due to extenuating circumstances, within 150% of the time or 66 weeks.
    2. Objective 2.2 — Eighty percent of graduates will obtain employment within 12 months in dietetics or related field.
    3. Objective 2.3 — Eighty percent of graduates over a 5-year period will successfully complete the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within one year following first attempt.
    4. Objective 2.4 — Eighty percent of program graduates will take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion. 
    5. Objective 2.5 — Eighty percent of employers will indicate the graduates are prepared for the workplace.
  3. The program will prepare graduates for leadership in the field of nutrition and dietetics. Being prepared for leadership in the field indicates that graduates are well-prepared for the profession, which reflects the mission of providing high quality supervised practice experiences that prepare graduates for the field. The expectation is that graduates will be highly respected because of their competency and leadership potential.
    1. Objective 3.1 — Eighty percent of surveys returned from employers rated graduates as being good or excellent for competency and leadership potential.
    2. Objective 3.2 — Eighty percent of surveys returned by employers will rate graduates as meeting or exceeding entry-level competencies and potential for leadership.
    3. Objective 3.3 — Eighty percent of graduates will pursue leadership roles in the community or profession within 2 years of completing the dietetic internship.

All of these goals and objectives can also be found in the Dietetic Internship Handbook. The mission, goals, and objectives will be monitored at least annually for program effectiveness. Program outcomes data are available on request.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must first apply on the Dietetic Internship Centralized Application Services (DICAS) online applicant portal. DICAS is a service of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and offers applicants a convenient, state-of-the-art, web-based application service. The DICAS application may be accessed at https://portal.dicas.org.

The admission requirements for the DICAS are:

  • Complete the online application and pay application fee;
  • Submit three letters of recommendation;
  • Submit any/all official transcript(s) in English (or translated to English) of all previous college work. The transcript must indicate a bachelor's degree in Nutrition or related field from a regionally accredited college or university;
  • Submit a personal statement which includes the following: Short-term and long-term professional goals (after completing the dietetic internship); please address how faith can inform your work in the profession of dietetics, describe experiences you have had working with individuals who are dealing with poverty or are at risk for homelessness and how you felt about those experiences; and please explain your philosophy of working with the impoverished.
  • Submit a personal resume; and
  • Register with D&D Digital for the computer match and rank each of the dietetic internships that you are applying to by the computer match deadline date. D&D Digital is the company that matches applicants with Dietetic Internships. Use the following link to access the D&D Digital Web site: http://www.dnddigital.com. Once the student has been matched with the ACU Dietetic Internship, he or she should apply separately for admission to ACU.

The admission requirements for the ACU Dietetic Internship program:

  • Complete an online ACU application and pay the $25 fee;
  • A cumulative undergraduate approximate 3.2 and a minimum grade of B in Didactic Program in Dietetics courses and supporting courses including the sciences, statistics, and management; and
  • Applicants must have completed Didactic Program in Dietetics requirements in an accredited program as specified by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND).

 

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