Enrollment in the DPD is limited to 40 students. To be considered for admission into the professional sequence, applicants must be officially admitted to BYU, and:
- Four of the following eight courses must be completed at the time of application: NDFS 100, 200, 290; PDBio 220, 305; Chem 285; MMBio 221; Acc 200
- All prerequisites must be completed before beginning the professional sequence.
- Major GPA and performance in NDFS courses will be considered. Successful applicants typically have a major GPA > 3.0 and NDFS course grades > B-.
- Applicants need at least 300 hours of dietetics-related work and/or volunteer experience (see examples below).
- The application must be submitted by February 15 prior to the Fall Semester of desired acceptance and include:
- the completed application form (located under DPD Application on this web site.)
- an official transcript or Progress Report
- two recommendation forms
- personal interview by the selection committee
Dietetics-Related Work and/or Volunteer Experience
Admittance to the BYU Didactic Program in Dietetics requires 300 hours of dietetics-related experience. [Many internships, including BYU 's, require 1000 hours of related experience-the additional 700 hours are added to the 300 required for the DPD.] The experience can be gained through paid employment, volunteer activities, or a combination of both. Obviously, the types of experience you can gain while still in school are not the things a dietitian actually does, but rather are the things dietitians might plan and supervise.
The experience should be completed under supervision in an established organization. While it is impossible to list all of the experiences that might "count," here are some examples:
Healthcare, (hospital, nursing home, assisted living center, etc); School Lunch/Child Nutrition Program; University/College Dining Service; Commercial restaurant (Restaurant work "counts" only if in a supervisory or food production position-not wait staff, host, cashier positions.)
Diet clerk, diet tech, or dietary aid may have direct patient contact. CNA (nursing assistant), physical therapy aid, occupational therapy aid, and other positions involved with direct patient care in a hospital or nursing home provide excellent experience. Working in the medical billing and reimbursement area of a hospital provides experience with an important part of health care.
Many of the opportunities in the community will be volunteer rather than paid, although some paid positions exist. Any agency that has nutrition education/feeding as a component of its mission is a possibility-Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), Heart Association, Diabetes Association, Cancer Society, March of Dimes, food banks, food/shelter coalition, soup kitchens, meal preparation for Special Olympics, Headstart, Aging Services etc.
Food and Drug Administration, World Health Organization, US Department of Agriculture, and other agencies provide experiences in the legislative and oversight aspects of nutrition and food. If you happen to be in or near Washington DC these may be an option.
Being a teaching or laboratory assistant in nutrition or food science classes, anatomy lab, or other major classes, or the sensory analysis lab gives good experience.