The courses and programs in nutrition and food sciences have emerged from and are integrated with the physical and life sciences. The science of nutrition is concerned with the ingestion and utilization of food for the purposes of survival, prevention of disease, and the promotion of positive health. Courses for non-majors, as well as majors, are offered.

Faculty and Facilities

Faculty members, in addition to teaching and advising, are actively involved in research and other professional activities. Facilities include laboratories for courses and research in food science and nutrition. Our computer facilities improve instructional quality with programs for nutrition analyses of diets, food cost control, recipe and menu evaluation, tutorials, and simulations. Externships are coordinated for majors in a variety of community programs such as the Sierra Cascade Nutrition and Activity Consortium (SCNAC) and the Overweight Prevention and Treatment (OPT) for the Fit Kids program, both directed by Cindy Wolff. These programs are designed to assist North State residents in making changes in nutrition, exercise, and lifestyle that promote healthy eating and activity patterns.

Career Outlook

Dietetics is the study of the relationship of food to the health and well-being of individuals and groups. The US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects the employment of dieticians is expected to increase 18–26% through the year 2014 as a result of increasing emphasis on disease prevention through improved health habits. A growing and aging population will boost the demand for employment in hospitals, residential care facilities, schools, prisons, community health programs, and home health care agencies. Public interest in nutrition and increased emphasis on healthy lifestyles also will spur demand, especially in management.

Graduates may also work in food service and processing industries, wellness programs, public communication, and product development and promotion. Courses in the Option in General Dietetics meet the requirements of the American Dietetic Association for an accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD).

Nutrition and Food Science majors gain knowledge and skills in medical nutrition therapy, community nutrition, food science, and foodservice management.

The Minor in Nutrition offers an area of specialization for majors in exercise physiology, child development, nursing, health and community services, and others. The Minor in Foodservice Administration offers an area of specialization for majors in business administration, management, marketing, recreation, and tourism.

The MS in Nutritional Science provides an opportunity for students to increase competence in the science of nutrition subject matter in preparation for college teaching, research, administrative positions in public and private agencies, and graduate study beyond the master’s degree. The Option in Nutrition Education is designed specifically to facilitate nutrition professionals in communicating information to promote optimal health and nutritional status.

A post-baccalaureate Dietetic Internship, which is accredited by the American Dietetic Association, is available for graduate students who wish to become eligible to sit for the registration examination to become registered dietitians and who are enrolled in the MS in Nutritional Sciences program. The Dietetic Internship consists of thirty-two weeks of actual practice at sites in the area. An application to the Dietetic Internship program must be submitted to the program director after completing graduate course work.