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Dietetic Internship

Theresa O'Reilly, MS, RDN
Henderson Hall 146A

Phone: (973) 290-4126

Supervised Practice

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Supervised practice is divided into five areas: Clinical Dietetics, Departmental Management, Community Nutrition, Professional Development and the Entrepreneurial Nutrition Practice (ENP) concentration or Community and Public Health Nutrition (CPHN) concentration. The schedule is planned on a rotational basis. Students will participate in an orientation and simulated practice experience prior to the clinical rotation.

Clinical dietetics includes over 400 hours of intensive training in a variety of medical surgical specialties, nutrition support, critical care, outpatient and extended care environments. Nine weeks of clinical training is completed at either Morristown Medical Center or Overlook Medical Center. Additional hours will be completed at out-patient and extended care facilities. These facilities are located throughout the state.

Departmental Management is completed in a healthcare facility.

During the Community Nutrition rotation, students experience a variety of settings including child nutrition programs, community outreach and maternal health. An 80-hour culminating practice experience, evidence analysis investigation project, participation in the New Jersey Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ Annual Meeting and/or other professional meeting as well as training in Motivational Interviewing and professional use of social media are part of the Professional Development Rotation.

The ENP Concentration includes Nutrition Education and Counseling at the University’s Center for Nutrition, on other campuses and/or in corporate wellness or employee wellness settings. The CPHN Concentration is completed in 3 units, Federal Food and Nutrition Programs (through Child Nutrition Programs), Public Health Nutrition Education and Programming (through SNAP Ed) and with a unit, Farm to Fork completed at a variety of settings.

Schedule and Practice Sites

During the first year, students take coursework on-line and do not need to relocate. The ENP and CPHN concentration complete the program over two academic years with one course in the summer between these years. During Supervised Practice, the practice hours are completed 32-40 hours a week in a rotational basis. Supervised practice will be scheduled on a rotational basis.

Nine weeks of clinical training are completed at one of two medical centers as outlined above. Clinical faculty preceptors employed by the University are responsible for providing and overseeing on-site at Morristown Medical Center or Overlook Medical Center. This is supplemented with simulated work on campus using the simulation labs and case studies.

Each student will complete a clinical unit in extended care at either a long-term care center, rehabilitation center, psychiatric or developmental center. Students will also complete a clinical experience in an outpatient setting, such as diabetes, dialysis clinic. These sites are primarily located in northern and central New Jersey. Every effort is made to place students within a reasonable commute to the student’s residence, except for the nine clinical weeks as described above.

For Community Nutrition, non-profit agencies and corporations provide additional practice opportunities. Experiences will be supervised by Saint Elizabeth University faculty, Registered Dietitian/Nutritionists and other qualified food and nutrition or health professionals employed by the sites.

The faculty/staff of the University are responsible for all contractual and insurance arrangements and placements, except for Community Nutrition Education unit. Students are responsible for identifying a community practice site and assisting faculty/staff with the contractual agreement and complete these during FN677 Program Design and Management in Community Nutrition. However, if a student is unable to locate their own site, faculty will assign one to them. Some practice hours for the CPHN concentration are completed during FN626 Intro to Public Health (nutrition). Students are responsible for their own travel and communicating with sites for workplace details (time/ place to report, ID badge needs, etc.).

A final elective experience is completed at a site of the interns choosing. Other professional and community activities are included at various locations and on campus.

The SEU Combined MS/DI is not accredited to provide supervised practice in a distance format.

Most of the hours are completed during a typical weekday, but weekend hours are common in the community rotations. Students receive prior notice to those hours.