University Hospitals Dietetic Internship Program Provides Comprehensive Clinical and Research Training
University Hospitals’ accredited Dietetic Internship Program, founded in 1933 and the second oldest program in the nation, is recognized for providing graduates with a solid background in the field. Upon completing the program, graduates will be effectively prepared to pursue positions as entry-level registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs). In addition, the UH Dietetic Internship Program has a strong focus on providing each student with the foundation of research processes and applications.
In 1965, the dietetic internship linked with the Department of Nutrition at Case Western Reserve University and the Louis Stokes Cleveland Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center as part of the Combined Dietetic Internship/Master’s Degree Program.
Dietetic Internship Program’s Mission Statement
Graduates of the program will be well prepared to pursue positions as entry level Registered Dietitian Nutritionists. They will be able to begin a professional practice with a solid background encompassing the breadth of the field of dietetics. Their depth of knowledge will allow them to provide quality of service, effectively apply knowledge and provide a continuous systemic approach to evaluating outcomes. The graduate will be able to base their practice on significant scientific principles and best evidence.
Our program offers a unique variety of educational experiences in a diverse environment and provides interns with the following:
- A pediatric experience at University Hospitals Rainbow Babies & Children’s Hospital (ranked as one of the leading children’s hospitals in the country)
- A rotation at University Hospitals Seidman Cancer Center (part of the Case Comprehensive Cancer Center, one of only 36 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the country)
- Exposure to University Hospitals MacDonald Women’s Hospital (rated as one of America’s 10 best maternity hospitals)
- Intense acute care rotations
Dietetic Internship Program’s Goals and Objectives
- Graduates will be competent entry-level dietitians.
- Objective 1: At least 80% of program students complete program requirements within 18 months (150% of the program length).
- Objective 2: Of graduates who seek employment, 90% are employed in nutrition and dietetics or related fields within 12 months of graduation.
- Objective 3: 80% of program graduates take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion.
- Objective 4: The program’s one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within one year of first attempt) on the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80%.
- Objective 5: 100% of the graduates will self-report scores indicating satisfactory or higher as their perceived level of skill as an entry-level dietitian nutritionist.
- Objective 6: 100% of graduates’ employers who respond to the survey will rate graduates performance as satisfactory or higher for entry-level dietetics-related work.
- The graduates will be empowered to conduct research; both the graduate and graduate employer will understand the impact of completion of a Dietetic Internship Program focused in Research Processes and Applications.
- Objective 1: At least 80% of the graduates will self-report scores indicating satisfactory or higher as their perceived level of preparedness to participate in research related activities.
- Objective 2: At least 80% of the graduates will self-report scores indicating that completion of a concentration in Research Processes and Applications as valuable to their careers.
- Objective 3: 90% of employers, who indicate they themselves are knowledgeable in the field of research, report that the graduate’s knowledge of Research Processes and Applications was a factor influencing the hiring of the graduate.
- Objective 4: 90% of employers, who indicate they themselves are knowledgeable in the field of research, will rate graduates as adequately prepared to conduct research.
**Program outcomes available upon request.
Starting Professional Practice
After graduation, our registered dietitian nutritionists can begin practice with a solid background encompassing the breadth of the field of dietetics. Their depth of knowledge will allow them to provide quality of service, effectively apply knowledge and provide a continuous systemic approach to evaluating outcomes. The graduate will be able to base their practice on significant scientific principles and best evidence.
Strong Research Environment
The UH Dietetic Internship Program focuses on research processes and applications. The strong research environment provides students with many opportunities to expand and apply their research knowledge. This process begins during the fall semester when each student is paired with a research mentor in their coursework at Case Western Reserve University. The student and mentor continue to work together throughout the spring semester to complete the competencies/learning outcomes for the concentration.
Combined Master’s Degree Program
The Combined Dietetic Internship/Master’s Degree Program is 16 months long. The first 11 months are devoted to completing the accredited Dietetic Internship Program and 14 hours of graduate school coursework. The remaining graduate school requirements are completed during the final months. To have a Master’s Degree and registered dietitian nutritionist credentials at the end of the 16-month program is a winning combination and provides the student with a competitive edge when entering the job market for the first time.
The Dietetic Internship at University Hospitals provides a minimum of 1,587 hours of full-time scheduled supervised practice experience within a 49-week period. The program has an annual enrollment of five full-time interns.
The University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center Dietetic Internship (DI) Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND), 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995, 312-899-0040 ext. 5400.
Notification to Prospective Dietetic Interns
Effective January 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master’s degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). In order to be approved for registration examination eligibility with a bachelor’s degree, an individual must meet all eligibility requirements and be submitted into CDR's Registration Eligibility Processing System (REPS) before 12:00 midnight Central Time, December 31, 2023. For more information about this requirement visit CDR's website: https://www.cdrnet.org/graduatedegree. In addition, CDR requires that individuals complete coursework and supervised practice in program(s) accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). Graduates who successfully complete the ACEND-accredited dietetic internship program at University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center are eligible to apply to take the CDR credentialing exam to become an RDN.
In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. For more information about state licensure requirements click here.
For more information about educational pathways to become a RDN click here.