The combined Dietetic Internship Master of Science program is a degree program in the Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences. The facilities where students gain supervised learning experiences are found throughout the State and represent some of the best healthcare institutions in Southern New England. The variety of facilities provides an opportunity for students to experience different management styles and organizational climates. Most participating sites, however, are concentrated in the northern section of the State, approximately 20 miles from the University. Classes associated with the program are generally scheduled at the University in Kingston.
The program is designed as an intense 2-year program. The first year focuses on experiential learning with supportive didactic coursework. The second year focuses on academics and completion of a Master’s Thesis. The first year covers a period of 44 weeks with 1436 hours of supervised practice in health care and research facilities in Rhode Island including a 1-week orientation, one 8-week rotation covering food service management, one 9-week community nutrition rotation (6 weeks EFNEP, SNAP-Ed, 1-week in a private practice setting, 1-week long term care, 3-days outpatient dialysis and 1-day high risk prenatal), a 12 week general medical nutrition therapy rotation, 10 weeks of advanced clinical rotations (6 weeks advanced medical nutrition therapy including critical care, 2 weeks of staff relief, 1 week preparation for staff relief, and 1 week nutrition support), a 1-week elective rotation and 132 hours of applied nutrition research working with a faculty member leading to completion of a Master’s Thesis Proposal.
The program provides general dietetic experience with a concentration in applied nutrition research. At the completion of the internship, students demonstrate satisfactory performance of 40 competencies. Students who enter the internship with significant prior experience will be evaluated on an individual basis and standard rotations may be modified or eliminated. Interns must satisfactorily complete all supervised practice rotations meeting all competencies as well as all requirements for the Master of Science degree before receiving a Verification Statement. This Verification Statement documents their completion of the experience necessary to take the Dietetic Registration Examination and to submit an application for licensure as a Dietitian/Nutritionist certified to practice in Rhode Island. The Dietetic Internship at the University of Rhode Island is accredited by Commission on Accreditation for Dietetics Education, American Dietetic Association, 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60606-6995, 312-899-0040, ext. 5400, Website: www.eatright.org. The first year in the 2-year program covers a 44-week span from the end of August to the beginning of July including state holidays and three weeks of vacation. The second year follows the academic calendar which can be found on the URI website http://web.uri.edu/catalog/academic-calendars/
The Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences provides areas of specialization in nutritional status and health behavior of high risk population groups; dietary behavior change to reduce chronic disease risk; nutrition issues related to aging and weight management; diet and exercise; energy and macronutrient metabolism; metabolic regulation and energy balance and lipid metabolism.
Students enroll for 13 credits in their first year and as full-time students their second year. Students failing to complete the program in two academic years will have to enroll for additional credits. Tuition costs and student fees can be found on the URI website http://www.uri.edu/es/acadinfo/acadyear/tuition.html. There is a $500 internship fee paid to the University of Rhode Island in addition to tuition costs and student fees. In the first year students are also responsible for health insurance, travel to facilities and to the university, housing, books, immunizations, and a criminal background check with total costs estimated at $20, 000. The university provides professional liability coverage at no additional cost to the student. In the second year students have additional responsibilities for health insurance, travel to the university, housing and books with total costs estimated at $15,000. Students are eligible for loan deferments and financial aid. Although many students receive assistantship support during their second year, assistantships are awarded on a competitive basis and are not guaranteed. Assistantship support pays for tuition, health insurance, some fees, parking and provides a stipend estimated at $15, 028 for 2012 – 2013 for 20 hours of assistantship work for 36 weeks.
All applicants must meet requirements for the Master of Science program. Completion of a bachelor’s degree with a cumulative undergraduate 3.0 GPA and GRE examination within 5 years (the equivalent of a score of 500 verbal and 500 analytical recommended; equivalent of minimum score of 450 in each area required). Non-native English Speakers must also send official TOEFL scores unless they have completed a bachelor’s degree from a U.S. institution. Coursework requirements include a minimum of two semesters of chemistry, and one each of biochemistry, anatomy or biology, human physiology, nutrition and statistics as well as an advanced nutrition course with a biochemistry prerequisite. In addition, applicants must define their research interests in their applicant’s statement. Students are only admitted to the program with a faculty member willing to supervise their research; students will not be admitted if they identify a research area that is not compatible with faculty expertise. Information about faculty research expertise is available on the website. However, applicants are encouraged to search current databases such as PubMed because faculty website information may not be updated regularly.
In addition to the general requirements for the Master of Science, completion of an AND (Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics) accredited DPD program within 5 years of the application deadline is required with a Verification Statement signed by the DPD Director. Students completing their DPD more than 5 years before the application may require additional coursework.
GRE examination within 5 years (score of 500 verbal, 500 analytical recommended; minimum score of 450 in each area required). Non-native English speakers must also send official TOEFL scores by the deadline for the centralized application process (DICAS) – see the DICAS website for the specific deadlinehttps://portal.dicas.org.
There are three steps required to apply to the combined Dietetic Internship Master of Science program.
1. Application to the Graduate School
Graduate Application – you must submit the on-line graduate application (http://www.uri.edu/gsadmis/). Note that all materials including transcripts and GRE scores must be received by the February deadline.
- Unofficial transcripts from all institutions of higher education must be included in the Graduate School application. Note that you have to have official transcripts sent directly to DICAS. If you are admitted to the graduate program at URI, you will need to have an official transcript indicating completion of your bachelor’s degree sent directly to the Dietetic Internship Director as well as Graduate School before you can enroll in classes or start the internship.
- GRE scores – Official scores should be sent to the University of Rhode Island. Applications without official GRE scores will not be accepted.
- Application fee – you must submit the $50.00 fee for graduate application on-line.
- Please submit the same applicant’s statement submitted with the DICAS application. Include information about your research interests related to a Master’s Thesis at the University of Rhode Island.
- References –Do not insert the email of your referees on the Graduate School application form. In order to complete the form, you must insert two email addresses. Either use your own email for both referees or use generic email addresses. The reference forms required for dietetic internships will meet this requirement and must be submitted as part of the DICAS application. You must include at least one reference from an academic referee discussing your potential to complete an MS program including a Master’s Thesis.
- Non-native English Speakers must also send official TOEFL scores unless they have completed a bachelor’s degree from a U.S. institution.
- If accepted, Rhode Island residents must complete the Proof of Residency form and submit the required documentation before they can register for classes. This does not have to be submitted with the online graduate application.
2. Application to the Dietetic Internship
- This program is using the on-line centralized internship application, DICAS, which may be accessed athttps://portal.dicas.org; e-mail DICASinfo@DICAS.org The on-line application must be completed for our program by the deadline stipulated by DICAS. Please see the DICAS website for current application fee and deadline information.
- Applicants who apply to internships using DICAS will be asked to complete a personal statement with a maximum of approximately 1,000 words. Questions to be addressed in the personal statement include:
- Why do you want to enter the dietetics profession?
- What are some experiences that have helped to prepare you for your career?
- What are your short-term and long-term goals?
- What are your strengths and weaknesses or areas needing improvement?
- What are your research interests for your Master’s Thesis?
- Why did you choose University of Rhode Island?
- Official Transcripts from all colleges and universities attended should be sent to:DICAS – Transcript Dept., PO Box 9118, Watertown, Ma 02472
- When completing the application form, applicants must include the name and contact information (specifically an e-mail address) for each reference. This will trigger an e-mail message requesting completion of a reference form. The form will be completed on-line. Students submitting more than one application will need to use the same individuals as references for each application.
- Please be sure to list all work and extracurricular or volunteer experiences in the appropriate sections; resumes will not be used for evaluation of work and volunteer experiences. Practicum experiences for academic credit are not considered volunteer experiences.
3. Computer Matching
Applicants must also register online for computer matching and select University of Rhode Island as a dietetic internship priority choice by the deadline. Please see the D & D Digital website for current application fee and deadline information http://www.dnddigital.com.
Criteria used for admission include academic achievement, GRE scores, relevant work experience, personal statement of objectives including research interests, recommendation letters, and extracurricular/volunteer activities. Enrollment is expected to be limited to eight students.
Mission Statement – Dietetic Internship
The University of Rhode Island Dietetic Internship represents the successful integration of The University of Rhode Island and the healthcare-related facilities in the state. The Internship is committed to providing the opportunity for the practical application of theoretical knowledge in the area of dietetic practice and to training competent dietitians with demonstrated skills in applied nutrition research. The program provides a broad base of opportunities for learning by utilizing a variety of healthcare facilities and providing diverse didactic programs.
Program Goals and Expected Outcomes and Target Measures
A. To prepare competent entry-level dietetic professionals.
Expected Outcomes and target measures
- Over a five-year period, the pass rate for program graduates taking the registration examination for the first time will be at least 80%.
- Over a five-year period, graduates will rate their competence as “Adequate” to “Above Adequate” on the Postgraduate Survey
- Over a five-year period, employers will rate graduates as “Similar to other students” to “Above Similar” on relevant preparation/performance items on the Employer Survey
- Over a five-year period, 70% of program graduates who sought employment in dietetics will be employed within three months of program completion
- Over a five-year period, 80% of students will complete all program requirements, including a MS degree, within three years
B. To prepare graduates with the ability to conduct nutrition research.
Expected Outcomes and target measures
- Over a five-year period, graduates will evaluate research skills as “Adequate” to “Above Adequate” on the Postgraduate Survey
- Over a five-year period, employers will evaluate graduates’ research skills as “Similar to Other Students” to “Above Similar” on the Employer Survey
C. To prepare graduates who will actively participants in voluntary activities within the dietetic community.
- Over a ten-year period, 10% of graduates will assume leadership positions in the Rhode Island Dietetic Association
- Over a five-year period 50% of graduates will rate their participation in state dietetic associations as “Average” to “Above Average” on the Postgraduate Survey
D. To prepare graduates with skills to practice self-management of lifelong learning needs.
Expected Outcomes and target measures
- Over a five-year period, graduates will rate their confidence in participation in self-management as above average on the Postgraduate Survey.
- Over a five year period, employers will rate graduates’ attendance at CE programs as “Similar to Other Students” to “Above Similar” on the Employer Survey.
For more information, please contact:
Geoffrey W. Greene. Ph.D., R.D., L.D.N.
Professor, Director Dietetic Internship
Department of Nutrition and Food Sciences
112 Ranger Hall
University of Rhode Island
Kingston, RI 02881
Telephone: (401) 874-4028
Fax: (401) 874-5974