Nursing Education
Nursing Education Opportunities in Mississippi - 2006  <more..>
 
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Dietitian

   
Dietitians learn the fundamental principles of food and nutrition and help educate people on a healthy diet and ways to prevent diseases. They plan and supervise the preparation and serving of meals in facilities such as schools, hospitals, and restaurants. They are highly trained in the art of feeding individuals and large groups. Dietitians help decrease malnutrition, promote healthy lifestyles, and control diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. They are often in a managerial role that has them training and supervising the food service personnel who prepare and serve the meals. They apply the principles of food service, nutrition, physiology, and biochemistry to make recommendations for the nutritional management and support of patients. Other responsibilities for dietitians include establishing quality control standards for food service, supervising personnel, and controlling costs. They also spend a great deal of time on educational programs for nutrition, diet modification, and diet therapy. This is an essential service because a patient's diet can have a tremendous impact on the outcome of many medical therapies and procedures. Regardless of age, nutrition plays a major role in everyone's well being. Individuals interested in this field should have a good understanding of foods and nutrition, possess excellent communication skills, and be compassionate and understanding.

Work Environment:

Dietitians and nutritionists work in a variety of settings including secondary schools, colleges and universities, government agencies, hospitals, nursing homes, prisons, voluntary health agencies, health clubs, various support programs, research facilities, and food related industry.

High School Preparation:

Students interested in a career as a dietitian should take high school courses in biology, chemistry, algebra, English, business, health occupations/medical professions education, physical education, psychology, computer skills, social studies, and home economics.

College Requirements:

Employers usually prefer to hire individuals who are members of the American Dietetic Association (ADA). To become a member, students must receive a bachelor's degree from an ADA-approved institution, and then complete an approved pre-professional practice program or dietetic internship. Once the prerequisites are met for membership, individuals must pass the ADA examination in order to become registered. Dietitians must also complete continuing education hours to remain in good standing. Students interested in this field should contact schools for information on admission and course of study.

For educational institutions in Mississippi
offering this course of study click here.

Career Outlook:

Employment opportunities for dietitians are expected to grow about as fast as the average, which is an increase of 10%-20% over the next eight years. This is largely due to the emphasis that the medical community is placing on disease prevention through improved dietary habits. The growing aging population will also increase demand for dietitians because they will need balanced meals and nutritional counseling in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. As in most other occupations, job openings will result from the need to replace experienced workers who retire or leave the profession for other reasons.
 

 

 

Salary:
Average Annual Salary
$42,800


Salary Range
$36,900-$54,100

 

Professional Organizations:

American Dietetic Association
216 West Jackson Blvd., Suite 800
Chicago, IL 60606
Phone: (800) 877-1600
Phone: (312) 899-0008
 www.eatright.org

American Society for Nutritional Sciences
9650 Rockville Pike
Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: (301) 530-7050
 www.faseb.org/asns


Society for Nutrition Education
7101 Wisconsin Avenue, Suite 901
Bethesda, MD 20814
Phone: (800) 235-6690
Phone: (301) 656-4938
Fax: (301) 656-4958
Web: www.sne.org
 

 

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