Program requirements

How do I become a RD or RDN? 

Registered Dietitians (RDs) or Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) are food and nutrition experts who have met the following criteria and earned the RD or RDN credential: 

  • Completed a minimum of a bachelor's degree at a U.S. regionally accredited university or college or foreign equivalent, and coursework through an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) or Coordinated Program in Dietetics (CP). 
  • Complete required hours of supervised practice through an ACEND accredited Dietetic Internship, Coordinated Program in Dietetics or an Individualized Supervised Practice Pathway (ISPP) offered through an ACEND accredited program. 
  • Passed a national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). For more information regarding the examination, refer to CDR's website at www.cdrnet.org. In order to maintain the credential, an RD or RDN must complete continuing professional educational requirements. 

In addition, many states have regulatory laws (i.e. licensure) for food and nutrition practitioners. All states accept the RD or RDN credential for state licensure purposes. The GPHN provides an opportunity for eligible students to complete the required hours of supervised practice while enrolled in our MSDI or DI program. 

Becoming a Registered Dietitian

A Career Changer's Pathway to Becoming an RDN

What are the prerequisites to entering any GPHN program?
For information on admission requirements, visit the Application and Admissions page for the DI, MSDI, MS in Human Nutrition or MS in Food Systems and Society. Please note that each applicant must meet the stated requirements. The admission requirements apply to everyone, including those who have not yet completed a DPD or a bachelor's degree from an accredited university. GPHN does not offer conditional acceptance. 

Haven't completed a DPD program? Find a DPD program near you!

I am an international student, what steps do I need to take to apply to the program?
Please visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics for information for international students. For information on admission requirements for international students, visit the Application and Admissions page for the DI, MSDI, MS in Human Nutrition or MS in Food Systems and Society. Please note that each international applicant must meet the stated requirements. GPHN does not offer conditional acceptance.

What does the "ideal applicant" look like?
Ideal applicants to our programs must have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on 4.0 scale and strong grades in the professional and science DPD courses. The selection committee will review each application packet for evidence of prior work experience, significant volunteer activities that demonstrate the spirit of community involvement, excellent written and verbal communication skills, and a commitment to the profession of nutrition and dietetics. 

We would love to get to know you! Send us an email today to set up a campus visit or to learn more about our program.

What is the match program and how does it work?
All applicants to the OHSU MSDI and DI must participate in computer matching through D&D Digital. For more information, please visit the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Computer Matching Policy and Procedure webpage and D&D Digital

Do you require GRE scores for admission?
No, GRE scores are not required for the MSDI, DI or MS program. While the program no longer requires the GRE for admission, applicants are welcome to submit their scores to OHSU (Institutional Code: 4865).

Financial aid and program costs

What is the cost for the programs and do you offer scholarships, fellowships, or stipends?
For information more information regarding tuition estimates, fees, financial aid, debt counseling, stipends, fellowships, and scholarships, visit the Tuition and Financial Aid page for the DI, MSDI, MS in Human Nutrition or MS in Food Systems and Society

Will the program pay for my living costs or provide housing?
No, the program does not pay for living costs or provide housing. We encourage applicants to consult with OHSU Financial Aid Office for information on financial aid. Housing may be provided to students who complete rotations at distance sites from their primary placement, however this will be explained to students more fully in preparation for those rotations and is not guaranteed.

Are dietetic interns at OHSU eligible for financial aid?
Yes, dietetic interns at OHSU are eligible for financial aid since they earn graduate credits throughout the program. The OHSU code for FAFSA Form is 004883.

General questions

How do I apply to any the GPHN programs?
For information on applying to our program, visit the Application and Admissions page for the DI, MSDI, MS in Human Nutrition or MS in Food Systems and Society.

Do I need a car?
Yes, you will need personal reliable transportation to and from rotations. Due to parking limitations on Marquam Hill, students are encouraged to use public transportation getting to and from the OHSU campus. More information is available through OHSU's Transportation and Parking office.

Where should I live?
Students often choose to find housing near their primary placement site to cut down on travel time during the bulk of their supervised practice rotation hours. We recommend that students keep in mind public transit options when considering housing for easy travel to campus on class days. This applies even more so to MSDI students who will be on campus more during the second year of the program. MS students are also encouraged to live close to the main Marquam Hill campus to attend classes and work on thesis and capstone projects.
OHSU Off-Campus Housing List 

Where are your rotation sites located?
Supervised practice rotations are located throughout the Portland metropolitan area, SW Washington, and Medford in both rural and urban communities. Students placed in Medford will complete all supervised practice rotations in their community for the duration of the program, but are expected to travel to Portland for special academic events associated with the GPHN program. These events will be discussed with students placed in Medford prior to and during GPHN's Orientation Week. 

Regardless of location, all students are required to attend and participate in all scheduled supervised practice rotations and other required activities and/or events. 

Can I be employed while enrolled in the DI or MSDI? Can I complete the DI or MSDI part-time?
We do not encourage employment due to the intensive rotation experiences and course work requirements. Some students in the MSDI have been employed or received fellowships during the second year of the program, after completion of the supervised practice rotations. The DI and first year of the MSDI is full-time and cannot be completed on a part-time basis. Students enrolled in the stand-alone MS in Human Nutrition program can complete it on a part-time basis.

What is a day like in the internship? 
Generally, students are in didactic courses on Mondays from approximately 9am - 4pm. Tuesdays through Fridays are full day supervised practice rotations at the various sites. These schedules are subject to change and rotations, community outreach projects, or other course requirements may take place outside of these hours and/or days. 

Example of OHSU Placement Rotation Schedule

What is the difference between the MS thesis option and the MS with non-thesis (capstone) option? Why should I choose a thesis or a non-thesis track? 
Prospective students should review the program pages of the Combined MS/DI (for those interested in completing a MS with their dietetic internship) or the Master of Science in Human Nutrition (for those who have already completed a DI or who are already a RDN) for more information on each program and past thesis and capstone projects.

Thesis or Capstone: A Guide for Prospective Students

What is the length of each program?
The DI is approximately nine months, starting in September and ending in June each year. The MSDI can be completed in approximately two years, completing the supervised practice portion in the first year and additional graduate work in the second year. The MS program, thesis or non-thesis option, is generally completed in one to two years.  

Do you certify your graduates to be RD/RDNs?
After successful completion of the DI or MSDI, the graduate completes eligibility paperwork to apply to sit for the national RD/RDN exam administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) and receives a verification statement signed by the Dietetic Internship Director documenting successful completion of the internship. 

What are the employment opportunities available to graduates of your program?
Our graduates work in all sectors of the nutrition and dietetics profession, from clinical to community to foodservice to research and more! Most of our graduates have employment opportunities presented to them while completing their program, but please note that Dietetic Interns (DI or MSDI tracks) cannot begin employment until after graduation.  Many sites will not hire graduates until after they’ve passed the RD/RDN exam. The program also forwards job postings to students nearing the completion of their program and recent alumni (within the last five years).

What perks and resources are offered to OHSU and GPHN students?
OHSU students have access to many campus resources, such as the Student Center (Student Life) with a media and game room, March Wellness & Fitness Center with pools and other health resources, Student Interest Groups, the Library and more. 

Do you offer a tour of the OHSU campus?
Not quite yet! Due to COVID-19, we are currently only offering virtual meetings. 

Schedule a visit today!