Graduate Certificate in Dietetics
The Dietetic Internship program is part of the Graduate Certificate in Dietetics. The Dietetic Internship provides the knowledge and practice requirements necessary to be eligible to take the Registered Dietitian (R.D.) examination. Interns are placed in rotations in hospitals, long-term care/skilled nursing facilities, health clinics, community nutrition programs and other health/community organizations in the Bay Area for supervised practice experiences. In addition to the internship portion of the program, interns take graduate-level academic courses in nutrition on management, nutrition in the lifespan, research and medical nutrition therapy.
24-unit graduate certificate and internship
How to Apply
Admission criteria and application process
Dietetic certificate/internship faculty
Meet the Interns
Meet the dietetic interns and graduate certificate students.
About the Program
The mission of the San Francisco State University Dietetic Internship is to provide a high-quality program that prepares interns in the areas of medical nutrition therapy (concentration), community nutrition and management.
Upon completion of the program, graduates will be prepared for entry-level work as Registered Dietitian Nutritionists/Registered Dietitians (RDNs/RDs) to provide services to individuals, families, consumers and the institutions, industries and businesses serving them in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area.
Program Goals and Measured Outcomes
Program outcomes data are available on request.
Graduates of the program will be prepared for entry-level practice as Registered Dietitian Nutritionists/Registered Dietitians (RDNs/RDs).
- Objective 1: At least 80% of program graduates complete program requirements within 16 months (150% of the program length - standard completion time is 11 months).
- Outcome: 97% of interns from the last five years finished the program within 16 months.
- Objective 2: 95% of program graduates take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion.
- Outcome: 99% of graduates from the last five years took the RD exam within 12 months of program completion.
- Objective 3: 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%
- Outcome: 96% of graduates, over the last five years, passed the credentialing exam within 1 year of program completion. (84% pass the exam on the first attempt.)
Graduates of the program will became gainfully employed as Registered Dietitian Nutritionists/Registered Dietitians (RDNs/RDs).
- Objective 1: Of graduates who sought employment in dietetics, 50% will be employed within 3 months of program completion (and after starting job search) in nutrition and dietetics or related fields, and 95% within 1 year.
- Outcome: 69% of graduates from the last five years found employment within 3 months, and 98% within 12 months.
- Objective 2: 80% of employers of DI graduates will consider them to be prepared for employment.
- Outcome: 85% of employers who responded to the survey considered graduates from the last five years, to be prepared.
- Objective 3: At least 80% of graduates will be employed in a nutrition/dietetics related position located in the greater San Francisco Bay Area one year after program completion.
- Outcome: 86% of graduates from the last five years, one-year post program completion, were employed in the Bay Area.
Outcomes for Interns Completing the Program, 2015 - 2020
- 96% passed the credentialing exam within 1 year of program completion.
- 69% found employment in the nutrition/dietetics field within three months of program completion, and 98% found employment in the field within 12 months of program completion.
- 86% were employed in the Bay Area one year after program completion. (The rest were employed outside of the Bay Area, mostly in Southern California.)
How does this program help me become an RDN/RD?
This certificate program/dietetic internship provides the knowledge and supervised practice requirements necessary to be eligible to take the RD/RDN credentialing exam.
In order to be eligible to take the RD/RDN exam, individuals must have completed a bachelor’s degree, a DPD program and a Dietetic Internship. This program provides the last step in this process.
Upon completion of all program requirements, graduates will be given a verification statement stating they have completed an accredited Dietetic Internship program. The program director will submit graduates to the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR), stating eligibility to take the RD/RDN exam. After successfully passing the exam, graduates may put the credential of RD or RDN after their name.
The State of California does not currently have licensure for dietitians. However, California does have a Business and Professions Code which provides title protection for Registered Dietitians and describes scope of practice. Employers in California who typically hire dietitians, such as hospitals, health clinics, skilled nursing facilities, dialysis units and public health departments, typically require the RD/RDN credential.
Most other states in the United States have state licensure for RDs/RDNs. A graduate of this program who passes the RD/RDN credentialing exam would be eligible for licensure in these other states as long as they meet that state’s licensure requirements. (May require application, fees, verification forms, transcripts, evidence of continuing professional education, etc.)
- What is a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist?
- State Licensure Requirements - Commission on Dietetic Registration
- Educational pathways to become a RD/RDN - ACEND
Master's Degree Requirement for RD/RDN Credential Starting in 2024
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/registered dietitian nutritionist (RD/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 midnight Central Time, December 31, 2023.
For more information about this requirement visit the CDR website.
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 [program type] program at [Institution name] are eligible to [apply to an ACEND-accredited supervised practice program/apply to take the CDR credentialing exam to become an RDN].
Cost and Length
Tuition: $1,650 - $3,300, subject to change
Length: The Dietetic Internship is a full-time, 11-month program, from mid-July through early June the following year.
When to Start: Summer
Those enrolled in the Certificate in Dietetics/Dietetic Internship may be eligible for a Federal Direct Student loan. Those interested in financial aid should complete the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) application after admittance to the program.
Please note that Financial Aid is not available until the fall semester. Tuition (estimated to be $1,650 - $3,300, subject to change) for the summer will need to be paid in full prior to Financial Aid monies being available.
Please note that financial aid has covered only partial tuition costs for previous interns, and is a loan, not a grant. Applicants should consider their ability to financially cover tuition, all living expenses and other program-related and personal costs for the program year prior to applying to our program.
As this is a full-time program, any outside employment or other significant time commitments during the program are very strongly discouraged.
As per federal regulations for programs that qualify for financial aid, the following information is provided:
A dietetic internship prepares students for the following careers:
SOC# 29-1030 "Dietitians and Nutritionists" and SOC# 29-1031 “Dietitians” Job description for “Dietitian and Nutritionists”
Please also visit the SF State Office of Student Financial Aid website.
Applicants are encouraged to apply for Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, California Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and other scholarships. Private student loans are also available.
This is an accredited Dietetic Internship (DI) program of the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND). A DI offers the practicum experiences and competencies required prior to taking the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist/Registered Dietitian (RD/RDN) exam which is given by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). Upon successful completion of this program and all its requirements, graduates receive a verification statement from the DI Director. Graduates are then eligible to sit for the RD/RDN exam.
In July 1997, San Francisco State University’s Dietetic Internship Program was granted an initial accreditation for a period of ten years by the Commission on Accreditation for Dietetics Education (CADE), now ACEND. A five-year interim report was submitted in February 2002. The Self-Study was submitted February 2009 and the re-accreditation site visit was in May 2009. The program was granted continued accreditation for 10 years. The five-year interim report was completed in November 2014 and approved for continued accreditation. The program submitted a Self-Study in August 2018 for re-accreditation. The Re-accreditation Site Visit took place in November 2018 and the program was granted continued accreditation through December 2027.
Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190
Chicago, IL 60606-6995
Phone: (800) 877-1600, ext. 5400
Family, Interiors, Nutrition & Apparel (FINA) Department
This program is offered in partnership with the Family, Interiors, Nutrition & Apparel (FINA) Department, part of the College of Health & Social Sciences.
The FINA Department is composed of four programs, uniquely woven together to provide an integrative student experience, advancing understanding of contemporary issues that impact the food, shelter, clothing and relationship needs of individuals, families and communities.
At the heart of the FINA programs is the goal of providing an enriched student educational experience that builds on the tenets of the family and consumer sciences body of knowledge through research-based practices that address quality of life issues.
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