Beginning this fall the WKU Department of Family & Consumer Sciences is offering a Dietetic Internship Program. Successful completion of this nine-month internship program will result in eligibility to take the national dietetic registration exam and receive a Graduate Certificate in Dietetic Practice.
The extreme shortage of internships available in this field nationwide is the driving force behind this program. In the past three years only fifty percent of those who apply for dietetic internships are placed. By developing this program, administrators hope not only to increase intern placement but also to generate more Registered Dietitians for the western region of Kentucky.
The program has accepted ten interns in the first cohort which began this fall. This year five of the ten interns are Western Kentucky University graduates. Interns will complete 32 weeks of supervised practice at designated healthcare sites throughout Kentucky, focusing on the concentrations of Medical Nutrition Therapy, Community Nutrition, and Foodservice Systems Management. This hands-on training will be done in conjunction with online graduate courses in each corresponding area.
“The internship will provide the student interns with opportunities to acquire the competencies necessary to function as entry-level practitioners and to become eligible to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians,” explains Program Director Jane Simmons.
The Western Kentucky University Dietetic Internship has been granted candidacy for accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
The graduate certificate is designed for students who have completed an undergraduate Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) and have been accepted into the WKU Dietetic Internship. Students interested in the WKU Dietetic Internship will be required to apply online using a national centralized application system.
For more information, visit http://www.wku.edu/facs/dieteticinternship or contact Jane Simmons, Program Director at (270) 745-5224.