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Combined Master’s Degree and Dietetic Internship
The integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program is a 21-month program that integrates didactic and supervised practice experience. Students will also complete a master’s research project. Upon completion of the program, the student earns an MS degree with a major in clinical nutrition, completes an accredited dietetic internship and is eligible to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians.
The integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and dietetic internship is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND).
Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics
Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
120 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190
Chicago, IL 60606
(800) 877-1600, ext. 5400
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Admission Requirements
All who apply to the integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program must have a baccalaureate degree and a verification statement from an ACEND accredited didactic program in dietetics (DPD). Accredited DPD programs can be found on the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics website at www.eatright.org/acend.
Application requirements, fees and the application process are specified on the Department of Clinical Nutrition webpage at www.rushu.rush.edu/cndi.
If you have questions, contact Mark McInerney, DHSc, RD, LDN, at Mark_C_McInerney@rush.edu or (312) 563-0990.
Once students are accepted into the Dietetic Internship, they are then required to complete the application for Rush University. A program acceptance confirmation fee of $250 is required at this time. The fee is nonrefundable and will be applied to tuition for the first term.
Rush University Medical Center requires that all prospective employees, including dietetic interns, undergo drug testing as a contingency for employment or enrollment.
Criminal Background Check
All dietetic interns will undergo a criminal background check to comply with legislation regarding employment in the health care field to assure patient safety.
Required Testing for all Applicants
Those applying to the Integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program need to submit results of the following:
- International applicants: Graduates who obtained their education outside the United States and its territories must have their academic degree(s) validated as equivalent to the baccalaureate or master’s degree conferred by a regionally accredited college or university in the United States. These applicants also must submit results of TOEFL examination (see College of Health Sciences TOEFL requirements).
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Graduation Requirements
Once admitted to the Integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program, students will need to successfully complete the required 48 credit hours for graduation. This includes a minimum of 1,000 hours of supervised practice experience. In order to be eligible to take the registration exam for dietitians administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration, students must fulfill all requirements of the MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship to receive a verification statement. Students must complete all MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program requirements within 31.5 months from the time they began the program.
Students must meet the following in order to graduate and have the degree conferred:
- Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or greater
- Successfully complete all didactic coursework
- Successfully complete all required supervised practice hours
- Successfully complete all requirements of the master’s research project
- Pass the Rush University Interprofessional course
- Complete a minimum of 16 contact hours of approved professional or community service
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Research Activities
Students will be required to complete a master’s research project. Faculty members of the Department of Clinical Nutrition are involved in basic and applied nutrition research. Faculty and students present at professional meetings and publish in peer reviewed journals. A list of faculty and student research presentations and publications can be found at the Clinical Nutrition webpage.
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Service Activities
Students are required to complete 16 hours of community or professional service during the program. Students meet this requirement in a variety of ways, including assisting at health fairs, volunteering at the local food pantry, and helping at local clinics.
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Academic Policies
The Integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program is offered on a full-time basis only. The program spans five terms, including the summer term. The program must be completed within 31.5 months.
Rush University requires continuous enrollment through the completion of the degree (see Rush University Policies for further information). Students may be allowed to transfer up to 12 term hours of applicable graduate credit from another accredited university for the MS degree portion. Graduate courses must be completed with a B or better and approved by the student’s supervisory committee to be awarded transfer credit.
Students in the Integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program are required to earn a Passing (P) in all supervised practice courses and a grade of C or better in all didactic courses. Failure to earn minimum required grades may result in dismissal from the integrated MS in Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship program and will result in a performance review by the Clinical Nutrition Academic Progress and Promotions Committee. The faculty reserves the right to request the withdrawal of any student whose conduct or performance demonstrates lack of fitness for continuance in the graduate program.
Automatic probation will occur for any student results when a student’s cumulative GPA falls below 3.0 or when a student receives a grade of D or F in any course. The Clinical Nutrition Academic Progress and Promotions Committee notifies any student placed on probation, states the reason(s) for probation and indicates the conditions that must be satisfied for removal of probation.
A student who earns a grade of D or F in a course other than those listed above must repeat the course and earn at least a C. A student who earns a grade of D or F in more than one required course will be dismissed. Full-time students on probation must earn a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or greater by the end of the next two consecutive terms.
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Technical Standards
Rush University is committed to diversity and to attracting and educating students who will make the population of health care professionals representative of the national population.
Our core values I CARE (innovation, collaboration, accountability, respect and excellence) translate into our work with all students, including those with disabilities. Rush actively collaborates with students to develop innovative ways to ensure accessibility and creates a respectful, accountable culture through our confidential and specialized disability support. Rush is committed to excellence in accessibility; we encourage students with disabilities to disclose and seek accommodations.
The following technical functions are required of all students enrolled in the Clinical Nutrition program:
- Acquire information from demonstrations and experiences in courses, such as lecture, group and physical demonstrations
- Acquire information from written documents and computer systems (e.g., literature searches and data retrieval)
- Identify information presented in accessible images from paper, slides, videos with audio description and transparencies
- Recognize and assess patient changes in mood, activity, cognition, verbal and non-verbal communication
Use and Interpret
- Use and interpret information from assessment techniques/maneuvers
- Use and interpret information related to physiologic phenomena generated from diagnostic tools
- Possess psychomotor skills necessary to provide or assist in holistic clinical nutrition care and perform or assist with procedures and treatments
- Practice in a safe manner and appropriately provide clinical nutrition care and assessment in emergencies and life support procedures, and perform universal precautions against contamination
- Communicate effectively and sensitively with patients and families
- Communicate effectively with faculty, preceptors and all members of the health care team during practicum and other learning experiences
- Accurately elicit information, including a medical history and other information to adequately and effectively evaluate a population’s, client’s or patient’s condition
- Measure, calculate, reason, analyze and synthesize data related to the diagnosis and treatment of patients and populations
- Exercise proper judgment and complete responsibilities in a timely and accurate manner according to the clinical nutrition role
- Synthesize information, problem-solve and think critically to judge the most appropriate theory, assessment or treatment strategy
- Maintain mature, sensitive, effective relationships with clients/patients, families, students, faculty, staff, preceptors and other professionals under all circumstances
- Exercise skills of diplomacy to advocate for patients in need
- Possess emotional stability to function under stress and adapt to rapidly changing environments inherent to the classroom and practice settings
- Demonstrate concern for others
- Integrity, accountability, interest and motivation are necessary personal qualities
- Demonstrate intent and desire to follow the Rush University and Clinical Nutrition Code of Ethics
The technical standards delineated above must be met with or without accommodation. Students who, after review of the technical standards, determine they require reasonable accommodation to fully engage in the program, should contact the Office of Student Accessibility Services to confidentially discuss their accommodations needs.
Given the clinical nature of our programs, time may be needed to implement the accommodations. Accommodations are never retroactive; therefore, timely requests are essential and encouraged. Contact the Office of Student Accessibility Services to learn more about accommodations at Rush University:
Marie Lusk, MBA, MSW, LSW
Director, Office of Student Accessibility Services
600 S. Paulina St., Suite 901
Chicago, IL 60612
Master of Science Clinical Nutrition and Dietetic Internship: Curriculum
Program Total: 48 Credit Hours
Program Total: 48 Credit Hours
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