Frequently Asked Questions

Congratulations! By visiting our webpage, you are taking positive steps toward a brighter future. Many students like you have wondered how the program can help them create the career they’ve always wanted. We’ve compiled some of our most Frequently Asked Questions so you can find out a little more about our program, to see if it’s right for you.


Does the Dietetics program at UW-Stout meet AND [Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics] standards for accreditation status?

The Dietetics program is currently granted accreditation status by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics, 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000, Chicago, Ill, 60606-6995, 1-800-877-1600. Completion of the Didactic Program in dietetics and the baccalaureate degree meet minimum academic requirements for AND membership, registration eligibility, and application to a dietetic internship. In order to be eligible to take the registration exam, students must complete an internship after graduation.

What distinguishes Stout's program from other UW programs?

  • National and international reputation
  • A wide variety of courses
  • A 320-hour field experience
  • Hands-on activities which include food nutrition assessment and human performance laboratories

What is the faculty-student ratio?

  • 21:1
  • Lecture class: 34
  • Lab situation: 20

Is employment available on campus or in the area related to the program?

There is student work-study and state payroll money available, and the work can be either related or non-related to the program.

Students can also find jobs in the area related to assisted living, hospitals, nursing homes and community nutrition (WIC, Office of Aging and the like).

What is the probability of finishing in four years?

If you choose to take a minimum of 16 to 18-credit load each semester, you would finish in four years. Meeting with your advisor each semester is crucial to developing and ensuring course sequencing.

If I were to travel and study abroad would this affect my graduation date?

Probably not, because we recommend you study abroad early in your career. This allows you to take general or humanities courses while studying abroad. It is important to know early in your college career if you will be studying abroad.

What skills or competencies will I develop in the Dietetics program at UW-Stout?


  • Writing skills/education materials development
  • Interviewing/counseling
  • Public speaking/presentation skills

Physical And Biological Sciences

  • Nutrient metabolism
  • Drug-nutrient metabolism
  • Nutrition care as related to disease states
  • Medical terminology
  • Laboratory parameters

Social Sciences

  • Psychology, health behaviors and educational needs


  • Research methodologies/interpretation of research and statistics


  • Delivery/availability of community nutrition programs
  • Food and nutrition laws/regulations/policies
  • Function of ingredients in foods/recipe modification
  • Food preparation, food safety and sanitation
  • Food service purchasing, distribution, and service
  • Translate nutrient composition of foods and nutrition needs into menus for individuals and groups


  • Nutrition screening and assessment
  • Nutrient requirements across lifespan
  • Measure and interpret body composition data
  • Calculate and/or define diets for common conditions
  • Calculate enteral and parenteral formulations


  • Human resource management
  • Financial management
  • Marketing

Health Care Systems

  • Health care/reimbursement issues/ethics of care

Where do dietitians work?

Business: food manufacturing, advertising, and marketing, entrepreneurs, and own their own companies.

Clinical: outpatient or patient in hospitals, sports teams, nursing homes, clinics, health maintenance organizations, doctors' offices, other health care facilities.

Community: international organizations, federal, state, local governments, food business, and trade associations, volunteer organizations (UN and Peace Corps), USDA. FDA, WIC

Consultant: Self-employed in own private practice under contract to one or more health facilities, industry or businesses.

Education: universities, four-year colleges, community colleges, technical schools, dietetic internships, and extension and industry (Dairy Council).

Management: hospitals, nursing homes, retirement residences, company cafeterias, correctional facilities, elementary and secondary schools, food factories, colleges and universities, transportation companies, restaurants, the military and recreational facilities.

Research: government agencies, food and pharmaceutical companies, academic medical centers, educational institutions

What are employment opportunities?

  • Athletic trainer/dietitian
  • Caterer
  • Clinical dietitian
  • Commercial foodservice administrator
  • Community college educator
  • Community health programs
  • Consulting dietitian
  • Consumer and public relations specialist for food companies
  • Educational representative for business
  • Extended living facilities
  • Eating disorder facility
  • Extension service 4H coordinator
  • Extension service home advisor
  • Food advertising consultant
  • Food analyst/technologist
  • Food broker
  • Food editor
  • Food journalist
  • Food photography specialist
  • Food quality assurance specialist
  • Food research and marketing specialist
  • Food scientist
  • Food science educator
  • Foodservice administrator
  • Foodservice management business
  • Food stylist
  • Gerontological dietitian
  • Health club nutrition consultant
  • Home economist for food or equipment company
  • Hospital foodservice administrator
  • Marketing specialist for food and nutrition company
  • Medical nutrition therapy
  • Nursing Homes: clinical/food service director
  • Nutrition consultant
  • Nutrition counselor
  • Nutrition educator
  • Nutrition researcher
  • Peace Corps representative
  • Pediatric dietitian
  • Personal nutrition consultant
  • Private practice
  • Product development researcher
  • Public health nutritionist
  • Rehabilitation consultant
  • Research dietitian
  • Restaurant foodservice administrator/manager
  • Sales representative for food or equipment
  • School foodservice administrator
  • Sports dietitian
  • Taste panel coordinator
  • Test kitchen scientist
  • Weight management clinics

(This list is not all-inclusive of every opportunity)

What is a field experience?

A 320-hour field experience is required during one summer or obtained during the school year. This field experience is designed to help you obtain work experience in the field and better prepare you for an internship. Other universities do not have this experience, which gives a UW-Stout graduate a definite advantage in securing their first full-time position and in obtaining an internship.

You will be responsible for travel and any additional costs to obtain or secure the field experience as well as purchasing a lab coat as needed. Liability insurance may be required. Check with the site you have been approved to attend. An agreement (affiliation) may need to be established between UW-Stout and the field experience site. Contact the program director early enough to allow time to establish such an agreement.

What is the employment rate of graduates of the Dietetics program?

The College of Human Development has a nationally recognized program of study with an outstanding placement rate into internships of more than 95 percent.

What courses in high school would be beneficial?

Three years of math, chemistry and biology would be very helpful in completion of the program.

What is the mission of the didactic program in dietetics?

The mission of the UW-Stout Dietetics program is to prepare students for successful entry into dietetic internships, graduate studies and entry level employment in dietetics, as a registered dietitian. Learning experiences are situated in curricula that integrate evidenced-based science, critical thinking skills and practical application, while infusing the use of technology.

The Dietetic Program goals are:

  1. Provide education in a hands-on learning environment that prepares graduates to demonstrate foundation knowledge and skills resulting in competency for dietetic registration. This goal meets the program goal standard because it reflects the program’s mission to prepare competent who will be successful dietitians through evidenced based, applied learning activities, infused with technology.

  2. Graduates of the program will participate and contribute to the profession.

  3. Graduates who complete our program but do not complete an internship, obtain meaningful employment in a dietetics related field.

As a transfer student what courses will be transferred to my Stout program?

It is best to meet with your advisor to determine where transfer credits will fit. Courses that are similar in content and credits are generally easy to transfer.

Course prerequisite waivers will be discussed with students based on their knowledge level and will be determined by the program director and course instructor who is teaching that particular course. This will ensure that students are prepared to enter the course and can be assured they have enough prior learning to succeed. In order for a student to progress to future coursework and graduation, a prerequisite may need to be waived. Policies regarding course work completed at another institution and transferred to UW-Stout can be found at:

I'm a "special" student taking classes at Stout. How do I become a degree-seeking student in the Dietetics program?

You will need to go through the change-of-major process with the Advisement Center, Room 11, Bowman Hall.

What if I'm a "re-entry" student?

Whether you have previously attended Stout and are seeking to get back in, or have previously attended Stout, then earned some credit elsewhere and are seeking to bring those back in with you, you'll need to re-apply using the UW System Application for Admission online.

Detailed information on the process is available on the Admissions website

What is the grade point average for graduation?

A 2.75 grade point average is required to graduate.

Are there any courses that require a minimum grade?

Yes. You must earn a "B" or better in FN-212 Nutrition, and grades in FN-212, CHEM-115, CHEM-125, or CHEM135 and BIO-234 Physiology and Anatomy must equal 2.5 overall. Go here for details.

Is there a dietetics student organization?

Yes. The Stout Student Dietetic Association (SSDA) is recognized by the Wisconsin Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The club also works with Chippewa Valley Dietitians with projects in the area of nutrition education. The club also holds social events, community volunteer activities, and sponsors the Optimal Health Fair serving hundreds of community members each year. For more information, visit their website.

How do I get computer-matched for a dietetic internship after I graduate?

D&D Digital is the site for computer-matching information when applying to various internships. Students will rank the internships based on first choice, second choice and so on. You'll receive more information the required FN-408 Preprofessional Development course, usually taken in the fall of your senior/last year.

What is a verification statement?

Program graduates who maintain a “C” or better in all FN courses and maintain a minimum GPA of 2.75 at graduation, will receive a statement from the program director that verifies that compliance with all the Foundation Knowledge and Skills requirements of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Verification statements are mailed out to students once the registrar's office verifies degree completion. Verification statements are needed to enter ACEND-accredited Dietetic internships and will be provided to all students, regardless of acceptance to an internship, who meet qualifications.

Who should I contact for more information?

Karen Ostenso, Ph.D., R.D., C.D.
Dietetics Program Director
225 Home Economics Building
University of Wisconsin-Stout
Menomonie, WI 54751-0790

Phone: 715/232-2394