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College of Education and Human Development at The University of Texas at San Antonio Online Magazine

Coordinated Program in Dietetics

Newly transferred Coordinated Program in Dietetics admits first class

The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) Coordinated Program in Dietetics admitted the first class of students in fall 2013. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board approved the establishment of the program in May of 2012 that will allow students to earn a bachelor of Science in Nutrition and a subsequent master of Dietetic Studies degree. Students in the program will be eligible to sit for the Commission on Dietetics Registration national exam to become registered dietitians (RDs).

Program in Dietetics

The program, which is housed in the Department of Kinesiology, Health, and Nutrition in the UTSA College of Education and Human Development, currently has 10 students enrolled. The program was granted Candidacy for Accreditation in 2009, and hosted a site visit November 3 - 5, 2013, from the Accreditation Council for Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) for its full accreditation. Students completing the program will be considered graduates from an accredited program.

“As the interest in food and nutrition has grown and people better understand the link between proper nutrition and the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases, the need for health professionals in the dietetics field has increased,” said Carmen Roman-Shriver, associate professor and director of the program. “The new Coordinated Program in Dietetics will help UTSA create a pipeline of new professionals who will encourage people to adopt healthy lifestyles.”

Registered dietitians are an integral part of the U.S. health-care system. They are trained to translate the science of food and nutrition to prevent chronic diseases and improve the overall health and well-being of people of all ages.

Commonly, registered dietitians focus on the nutrition interventions in the treatment of diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular disease, hypertension, gastrointestinal disorders, and renal diseases. They also provide medical nutrition therapy for infants and children with different disorders, as well as trauma patients who may not be able to consume food orally but need alternate ways of nutrition for proper healing.

Currently, the program only offers junior-level courses, but the university will continue to add courses each year as the current class progresses through the undergraduate curriculum and into the master’s program of study.

Master’s-level students will be in the classroom once each week and at rotations 32 hours per week Tuesday through Friday during the fall and spring semesters. Supervised hours will be available at a variety of locations in San Antonio and other South Texas areas.

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