Loyola University Chicago

Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing


Loyola Dietetic Internship Track Selection

Two Options for completing the Loyola Dietetic Internship

The Loyola Dietetic Internship offers two options or tracks. Each track meets ASCEND standards for dietetic internships. Ten students are admitted annually to each track of the LDI as coordinated by nationwide, computerized matching by D&D Digital.

FeaturesDI onlyMS/DI
Anticipated time for completion 13 months 22 months
Credits 13 47
Hours of Supervise Practice 1200 1200
Supervised practice starts The first semester after admission After completing majority of the graduate course work
Upon completion student receives... ACEND verification statement of DI completion ACEND verification statement of DI completion


Loyola Master of Science (MS) in Dietetics degree
Eligible to take the registration examination for dietitians Yes Yes
D&D Digital matching number 494 156

Summary of Supervised Practice Experiences

Interns complete eight rotations during the course of the program which are nested within FONU 423, 425 and 427. Interns are typically scheduled to complete supervised practice eight hours per day, typically Monday through Friday. Interns should expect to be in supervised practice two-three weekend days per semester. Time for travel is not part of supervised practice.

FONU 423 (2 credits): Supervised Dietetic Practice in Medical Nutrition Therapy and Dialysis

Medical Nutrition Therapy (55 days): Interns develop skills to meet the responsibilities of a clinical dietitian and follow the host facility's standards of care and practice guidelines. Interns are initially assigned a low number of assessment, screening, educational and follow-up activities per week on less-complex patients. As the weeks proceed, interns are assigned more complex cases and the volume of patients increases. In addition, interns participate in the quality management program for clinical nutrition care, in-service presentations, patient care conferences and departmental meetings.

Dialysis Medical Therapy (5 days): Interns develop medical nutrition therapy skills with a focus on renal patients.

FONU 425 (2 credits): Supervised Dietetic Practice in Public Health Nutrition, Research, Marketing and Professional Development

Public Health Nutrition (35 days): This experience allows interns to work with diverse age groups, as well as socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds. Interns are involved in planning and delivering nutrition programs including those provided by the Women, Infant, Children’s (WIC), schools and school-based health clinic, Catholic Charities and outpatient departments.

Professional Development (10 days): Students identify an area of professional dietetic practice that they would like to explore with additional experiences.  The DI Director and student collaborate to develop this individualized experience using available resources.

Research (10 days): Students develop and engage in scholarly inquiry under the direction of faculty and preceptors including perspectives of ethical considerations, research methods, statistical analysis and dissemination of findings. Projects may be individual, group and/or at other supervised practice sites.

Marketing Rotation (5 days):  Interns have the opportunity to work on marketing a food product or nutrition service, employing market strategies, evaluating consumer needs and trends, testing products and interacting with the media. Possible sites include food and pharmaceutical companies, public relations firms and wellness programs.

FONU 427 (1 credit): Supervised Dietetic Practice in Management of Food Systems and Long Term Care

Management Rotation (25 days): Interns actively participate in all aspects of food-service management, including production, purchasing, service, inventory systems, human resources, safety and sanitation. Through this experience, interns gain experience in problem solving, quality management and fiscal management.

Long-Term Care Rotation (5 days): (5 days): Interns work collaboratively with preceptors to provide nutrition care to the elderly, developmentally disabled, psychiatric and rehabilitation residents in long-term care facilities. This rotation includes experiences in both clinical nutrition care of residents and management of food-service operations within long-term care facilities.

Summary of Graduate Coursework

Students completing either track of the LDI are required to complete 13 graduate credits as follows: a) 8 credits in didactic course work (FONU 420, 422, 424, 426), and b) 5 credits in supervised practice (FONU 423, 425, 427 as described above) for a total of 13 credits. Once a week, students are required to participate in class at the Loyola University Health Sciences Division (HSD) campus in Maywood, Illinois. Class time is not calculated in the supervised-practice hours and typically are scheduled from 6 p.m. - 9 p.m. Classes include lecture, discussion, group problem-solving, critical-thinking activities, exams, and additional assignments. In addition to the courses below, dietetic interns are required to attend seminars, both internal and external to the University, that enhance knowledge and skill development. 

Course #Course TitleCredits
FONU 420 Dietetic Internship: Orientation 1
FONU 422 Medical Nutrition Therapy Theory 3
FONU 423 Supervised Practice in MNT and D-MNT 2
FONU 424 Public Health Nutrition and Research Theory 3
FONU 425 Supervised Practice in Public Health Nutrition,
Research, Prof Development and Marketing
FONU 426 Food Management Theory 1
FONU 427 Supervised Practice in Food Management
and Long-Term Care

Besides those listed above, students enrolled in the MS/DI program are required to take additional courses which are part of the Master of Science in Dietetics degree program. Please note that completion of the MS in Dietetics degree also requires successful comprehensive exam completion according to policies of the School of Nursing.

Details about the Loyola academic calendar, including the start dates of each semester, can be found at: http://www.luc.edu/academics/schedules/index.shtml.

Monthly Seminars and Activities

Interns broaden their perspective on various areas of dietetics through seminars, group tours and other activities. Participation in all seminars and related activities is mandatory for all interns. Examples include: participation in the Distinguished Speaker Seminar Series and the Palmer Research Symposium sponsored by the Marcella Niehoff School of Nursing, Illinois Dietetic Association (IDA) Annual Assembly, IDA Lobby Day in Springfield, IL, seminars on sports nutrition, reimbursement and ethical issues in dietetic practice, media training, and an ethnic food tour. Participation in these activities is required. This time is not calculated as part of supervised-practice or didactic hours. An additional fee is added to tuition to cover the costs of seminar participation.

Completion Requirements

Loyola Dietetic Internship Certificate (DI/C) Track Program Completion Requirements:

Completion of the LDI/C requires successful completion of:

FONU 420, 422, 423, 424, 425, 426, 427 and all required seminars.
This is 7 courses, 13 credits and includes 1200 hours of supervised practice as part of FONU 423, 425 and 427.

Upon completion of the DI/C requirements, the student receives the ACEND Verification Statement of Completion of a Dietetic Internship and is eligible to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

Loyola Dietetic Internship + Master of Science in Dietetics (MS/DI) Track Graduation and Program Completion Requirements:

Completion of the MS/DI requires successful completion of:

FONU 420, 422, 423, 424, 425, 426, and 427, 503, 505, CMAN 410, 435, 439, 330, 468, 533, 568, GNUR 402, 408, 410, 436.
This is 20 courses, 47 credits and includes 1200 hours of supervised practice as part of FONU 423, 425 and 427, and the comprehensive exam.

Upon completion of the MS/DI requirements, the student receives the ACEND Verification Statement of Completion of a Dietetic Internship and is eligible to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians, and a Master of Science in Dietetics degree from the Loyola University Chicago Graduate School.