Nutrition and Dietetics

Simmons University’s Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics degree focuses on the study of practices and tools that improve the health, quality of life, and eating behaviors of a multicultural and diverse population.

Students in a food lab

Why study Nutrition and Dietetics?

The Simmons BS in Nutrition and Dietetics program is firmly rooted in the ideal that food can be the best medicine and reflects how integrated the field of nutrition is with all other scientific, medical, and biological studies.

The chemistry of food can cause a wide range of reactions to the body’s functions and long-term health. Accordingly, coursework establishes a base in core scientific subjects, such as biology, anatomy and physiology, chemistry, and biochemistry. Nutrition students then move on to more advanced, specialized topics in dietetics, including food science, community nutrition, nutrient metabolism, and food production.

Through the curriculum and hands-on learning, students become confident nutrition professionals capable of advocating for and influencing a healthier public. Explore the full BS in Nutrition & Dietetics curriculum in the Program Requirements section below.

Enriching Internships and Research Opportunities in Boston

Research, internships, and clinical experience are essential to nutrition students, providing the opportunity to explore interests, build skills, and develop mentor relationships with leaders in the field. Our Nutrition students work alongside practicing Nutrition Professionals reviewing medical records, interviewing and assessing the nutritional status of clients, and advising on healthy diets.

Students in the Nutrition and Dietetics bachelor’s degree program have access to a wealth of resources and external hands-on learning experiences throughout the City of Boston, which is a worldwide leader in health and medicine.

BS in Nutrition students have secured internship placements at the following prominent institutions and organizations:

  • Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources
  • Ethos
  • Women’s Lunch Place
  • Community Servings
  • Greater Boston Food Bank
  • WIC Programs

Students also benefit from hands-on learning experiences in the world-renowned medical centers in the nearby Longwood Medical Area, including Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston Children’s Hospital, and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.

Post-Graduation Dietetic Internship Program

As the BS in Nutrition and Dietetics degree provides preparation for entry into the dietetics field, students can apply for an accredited supervised practice program upon graduation. This is a crucial first step in becoming a Registered Dietitian. Following the supervised practice program, students can sit for the Registered Dietitian registration exam.

Simmons University continuously has excellent match rates, as our students work closely with faculty to secure supervised practice placements locally and nationwide.

Program Accreditation

Our Nutrition and Dietetics program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL, 60606 telephone: (800) 877-1600, ext. 5400.

Effective January 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master's degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). In order to be approved for registration examination eligibility with a bachelor's degree, an individual must meet all eligibility requirements and be submitted into CDR's Registration Eligibility Processing System (REPS) before 12:00 midnight Central Time, December 31, 2023. For more information about this requirement visit CDR's website: https://www.cdrnet.org/graduatedegree. In addition, CDR requires that individuals complete coursework and supervised practice in program(s) accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). Graduates who successfully complete the ACEND-accredited DPD program at Simmons University are eligible to apply to an ACEND-accredited supervised practice program/apply to take the CDR credentialing exam to become an RDN.

In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. For more information about state licensure requirements see https://www.cdrnet.org/state-licensure

For more information about educational pathways to become a RDN, see https://www.eatrightpro.org/acend /students-and-advancing-education/information-for-students.

Admission Requirements

Additionally, aApplicants must submit the following items to be considered for undergraduate admission:

  • Completed online application
  • High school transcript
  • SAT or ACT test scores
  • TOEFL Scores (required if English is not your first language)
  • College essay
  • College transcript (if applicable)
  • Two letters of recommendation (one teacher, one counselor)

Learn more about Simmons University’s first-year undergraduate application process, including deadlines and what we look for in an applicant.

Students interested in the BS in Nutrition and Dietetics degree must formally apply for the major during the second semester of their sophomore year. Students will formally declare the Nutrition and Dietetics major if they meet the following academic requirements:

  •  A minimum of a 3.0 cumulative overall GPA for the freshman year and first semester of the sophomore year (this includes any courses transferred in).
  • A minimum of a C in all science courses required for the Nutrition and Dietetics major (including statistics, chemistry and biology).
  • A minimum of a B- in all nutrition courses.

Shape the Health, Quality of Life, and Eating Behaviors of Your Community

The Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics degree at Simmons University prepares students to be advocates for healthy lifestyles through a firm scientific understanding of food and the human body and how the two interact. Interested in learning more? Request information or start your application today!

Research, internships and clinical experience are essential to nutrition students. You’ll have opportunities to explore your interests, build your skills and develop mentoring relationships with leaders in the field. We take full advantage of our location in the heart of Boston, and more specifically the Longwood Medical Area. Our students have been placed at the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources, Ethos, Women’s Lunch Place, Community Servings, Greater Boston Food Bank, a variety of local WIC programs, and a variety of local hospitals. 
 
Upon graduation, completing a Dietetic Internship Program is a crucial step in becoming a Registered Dietitian. Our students are successful in internship programs nationwide – we have an excellent placement rate.

The mission of the Simmons University Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) is to educate students and foster an appreciation of lifelong learning in preparation for their success in the nutrition and dietetics profession. We aim to prepare students to be effective in a profession that improves the eating behaviors and subsequent health and quality of life of a multicultural and diverse population, a profession that adds to the scientific investigation about food and health, and one that fosters an appreciation of nutrition and dietetics' relationship to other sciences.

The Didactic Program in Dietetics' goals and corresponding program outcomes (updated June, 2018) are shown below:

Goal # 1:
Simmons University DPD graduates will be prepared to become competent entry level dietetics professionals.

Corresponding program outcomes:

  • At least 80% of program students enrolled in the BS/DPD and DPD Certificate will complete the program/degree requirement within 3 years for BS students and 4.5 years for DPD students (150% of the program length)
  • The program's one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within one year of first attempt) on the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80%.
  • At least 75 % of graduates will assign a 4 (i.e., "agree") or a 5 (i.e., "strongly agree") to being prepared on 75% of the items (that pertain to content they learned at Simmons) on the graduate survey.
  • At least 75% of Directors of Supervised Practice will rate Simmons University DPD graduates as acceptable or higher on 75% of items listed on the survey.

Goal # 2:

Simmons University DPD graduates will be prepared to succeed in one or more of the following: a graduate program, an accredited supervised practice program, or employment.

Corresponding program outcomes:

  • 50% of BS/DPD, and 70% of DPD graduates apply for admission to a supervised practice program within 12 months of graduation.
  • 55% of BS/DPD and 80% of DPD graduates are admitted to a supervised practice program within 12 months of graduation*.

*Among those who applied for supervised practice programs.

Program outcome results for the Simmons University DPD are available upon request.

The estimated expenses for a typical full-time undergraduate resident student who is a non-nursing major and additional information pertaining to program cost and financial aid can be found here. Students can also review the Simmons University Academic Calendar to review information regarding semester dates.

Prospective and current students are encouraged to review the Nutrition Student Guide for more information pertaining to programmatic policies and procedures.

So you know that Simmons is a great place to be, you've learned about our programs, maybe even come for a visit...now you're ready to apply! Let's get started.

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Our Faculty

Lisa Brown photo

Lisa Brown

  • Associate Professor and Director of the Dietetic Internship Program
Teresa Fung photo

Teresa Fung

  • Professor and Director of Didactic Program in Dietetics
Sharon Gallagher photo

Sharon Gallagher

  • Associate Professor of Practice and Assistant Director of the Dietetic Internship Program