UNH Dietetic Internship Program
- The practice of dietetics encompasses the application of principles of food and the nutritional sciences to maintaining and achieving the health of both individuals and groups who would benefit from the management of disease through nutritional intervention.
- The dietitian whose training is focused on health promotion/disease prevention is capable of promoting health and nutrition, from farm to fork to health and nutrition outcomes.
- The emerging practitioner reflects dietetic professionalism through the adaptation and integration of the Foundation Practice Elements indentified in the 2008 ADA (now Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics) Phase II report (and identified below.)
- The professional is capable of performing and supervising food production and service.
- The health promotion/disease prevention dietitian is also prepared to provide nutrition education related to eating habits and food choices of healthy individuals and communities, as well as to design appropriate nutrition care for individuals who require dietary prevention strategies or management of existing disease.
- The dietetics practitioner is a Registered Dietitian who is formally recognized as having professional competence.
The practice of dietetics includes Standards of Professional Practice, which define desirable and achievable levels of performance for entry level practice. These standards are not requirements; rather, they are broad statements describing the minimum expectations of dietetics professionals in providing nutrition services to the public. The Standards of Professional Practice characterize the competency levels of entry-level dietitians and are included below and reflect the 2008 Standards of the ADA (now Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics) report of the Phase 2 Future Practice & Education Task Force.
The following Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation Practice Elements are consistent with all of the described practice roles included in entry-level dietetics training. The entry level RD thus:
- Provides patient/client-centered care.
- Practices using evidence-based recommendations and professional judgment to challenge the status quo.
- Contributes to the body of knowledge by participating in operational analyses, business process improvement and other applied research by monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of the nutrition care provided and reporting results.
- Analyzes, interprets and applies research.
- Adopts technology advancements.
- Utilizes informatics.
- Demonstrates leadership in multidisciplinary teams.
- Contributes to the advancement of food and nutrition policy through advocacy.
(*Final Report of the Phase 2 Future Practice of Dietetics Report, ADA Page 62) (now Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics)
Additionally for those in Health Promotion/Disease Prevention, the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics identifies an entry level RD as one who is:
- A food and nutrition expert and contributing member of the healthcare, public/community health, or school team.
- Capable of assessing, delivering and evaluating individual and population-based nutrition health promotion/disease prevention programs that promote health, prevent disease through reduction of chronic disease risk factors and contributes to healthy pregnancy outcomes.
- Provides nutrition care and services in a variety of settings including community health organizations, school nutrition programs, public health organizations/agencies, community based organizations/agencies, and public, private and non-profit healthcare/wellness organization/agencies.
- Applies concepts of assessment, planning, marketing, and evaluation to health promotion/disease prevention using creative and innovative methods that are culturally sensitive and appropriate.
- Utilizes knowledge of foods and food preparation to deliver culturally, ethnically, and developmentally appropriate educational programs and materials to clients, students, and employees.
- Functions with a degree of professional autonomy commensurate with the complexity of the situation.
Our Mission Statement
These preceding Foundation Practice Elements and attributes of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Health Promotion/Disease Prevention professional serve to inform our DI mission statement:
“The mission of the University of New Hampshire's Dietetic Internship is to recruit students who meet the program's admission criteria, and who, with training, will be able to function as capable, competent entry level dietitians in the field of nutrition, food service, health promotion, disease prevention and/or dietetics. The didactic and practicum opportunities provide an opportunity for the development of competencies and skills through supervised practice consistent with the Standards of Education as defined by Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.”