The University of Central Arkansas (UCA) Dietetic Internship (DI) is a post-baccalaureate, supervised practice program. Graduates of the DI receive a verification statement and are eligible to sit for the national exam for Registered Dietitians. Interns selected for the UCA DI program enroll as a graduate student at UCA . There are two components of the DI, a supervised practice portion and a didactic portion. The didactic portion includes two graduate courses, completed in the fall and spring semesters, and weekly class meetings during the twelve week summer sessions. Interns are kept abreast of their progress in course work through grades on exams, assignments, and/or written papers. The supervised practice component includes practice hours accumulated during assigned rotations. Preceptors and/or the DI director evaluate intern performance of each rotation. Successful completion of required supervised practice hours and all didactic work is required for program completion. After passing the Registration exam, graduates may apply for Arkansas licensure. More information on requirements for the Licensed Dietitian in Arkansas can be found at ardieteticslicbrd.net.
The UCA DI is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND), formerly the Commission on Accreditation for Dietetic Education (CADE), of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, a specialized accrediting body recognized by the Council on Post-secondary Accreditation and the United States Department of Education. Contact information for ACEND includes:
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000, Chicago, IL 60606-6995
Phone: 312.899.0040, ext. 5400
The UCA Dietetic InternshipI is a fifteen month post-baccalaurate program, concurrent with the UCA academic calendar, beginning mid May and concluding mid-August of the next year (example May, 2011 entrants graduate August, 2012). The program consists of 1200 hours of supervised practice, a seven day orientation, and approximately 200 hours of didactic hours. The DI provides full time supervised practice hours over two summers (12 weeks each summer) with an additional six weeks of supervised practice during the fall and spring semesters, to meet the 1200 hour requirement.
The Program area of concentration is Community Nutrition, using 2008 Eligibility Requirements and Accreditation Standards and Competencies for Dietetic Internships. Planned learning experiences include but are not limited to public and university school settings, community hospitals, local health departments, wellness facilities, specialty clinics, retirement communities, extended care facilities, and the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service. A wide variety of experiences in a community setting serve to enhance learning and is in keeping with the mission statement of the Internship. A pool of approximately 40 facilities with qualified preceptors is available for rotation experiences in the area. The majority of facilities are located within 50 miles of UCA, however some facilities may be located beyond the 50 mile radius. Interns are responsible for their own living arrangements and the use of a vehicle is mandatory in order to commute to assigned rotations.
MISSION AND GOALS OF THE DIETETIC INTERNSHIP
The mission of the UCA DI is to maintain a high quality program in dietetics, dedicated to assisting interns with development of needed skills for the varied roles of the dietitian in today’s society, and which ultimately culminates in registration eligibility with the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). Interns will be provided opportunities to develop expertise in nutrition therapy, community nutrition, foodservice systems management, and business/entrepreneur competencies while developing professional attitudes, maturity, and competent professional behavior.
The dietetic internship implements its mission through the establishment of the following goals and outcome measures
Goal #1 – Prepare graduates to be competent, professional entry-level dietitians.
- Eighty percent of students initially enrolled in the DI will complete the program within 24 months (150% of time planned for completion). (1.3.1)
- Within 12 months of completing the program, a minimum of 70% of graduates will have taken the RD exam
- Over a 5 year period, 70% or more of program graduates who sought employment in dietetics will be employed within three months of program completion (1.3.2)
- Over a 5-year period, the pass rate for program graduates taking the registration examination for the first time will be at least 80%.(1.3.3)
Goal #2 – Provide graduates with a basic knowledge of a broad range of career opportunities in the field of dietetics.
- A minimum of 70% of dietetic interns will indicate on exit interviews or surveys a rating of “satisfactory” or above with respect to whether a broad range of career opportunities were presented to them
- Seventy percent of dietetic interns will score a “satisfactory” or above rating on non-traditional rotation evaluations
Goal #3 -Prepare graduates for employment in a community-based setting.
- Seventy percent or greater of employers will rate program graduates at “satisfactory” or above on performance on employer surveys
Summer I 12 credit hours – tuition and fees Arkansas residents $3215 (Out of State --$5953)
Fall -- 3 credit hrs. – tuition and fees Arkansas residents $942 (Out of state--$1425)
Spring - 3 credit hours - tuition and fees Arkansas residents $942 (Out of state--$1425)
Summer II 6 credit hours – tuition and fees Arkansas residents $1731 (Out of State --$2805)
Tuition Total Arkansas residents $6830 (Out of State $11,608)
*Tuition based on 2011-2012 academic year and is subject to change as mandated by UCA Board of Trustees.
II. Estimated Related Expenses
Graduate Application Fee $25.00
Computer Matching Fee $50.00
Professional Liability Insurance (Paid by the program) $0
Personal Health Insurance @ $112.00 per summer or proof of personal health insurance (required) $224.00
Uniforms and/or Lab Coats $75.00
Housing/Meals @ $1000.00 per summer** $2000.00
Transportation (personal transportation required) Varies
Professional Meeting Registration $ 50.00
Registration Review School $325.00
Activity Fee @ $10.00 per summer term $40.00
Other Fees @ $24.50 per summer term $98.00
**Students are not required to live in university housing.
Available financial aid includes federal aid programs, state aid programs, and veteran's education benefits and aid programs. For additional information on financial aid and loan deferments, please visit http://www.uca.edu/financialaid/programs
Admission Requirements to the Dietetic Internship
Students in the program must meet the following requirements:
1. Completion of Baccalaureate Degree.
2. Statement of Verification regarding completion of the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) or Intent to complete form from an accredited DPD.
3. Official transcript(s) of course work from all colleges and universities attended.
4. Minimum 3.0 GPA (on a 4.0 scale)
5. Work experience in nutrition related area, under the supervision of a Registered Dietitian.
6. Completion of the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) with score forwarded to UCA Graduate School.
7. Completion of the on-line application (DICAS), which can be accessed at https://portal.dicas.org. A personal statement and three references are part of the DICAS application. The portal opens in December.
8. Participation in the computer matching program sponsored by D & D Digital Systems, which can be accessed at www.dnddigital.com.
The on-line application (DICAS) must be completed and submitted no later than 11:59 pm Central time on February 15, 2012. The fee for the first application submitted is $40 and $20 for each additional application. (Example: a potential intern applies to three programs. The applicant would pay a total of $80; $40 for the first application and $20 each for the other two).
The UCA DI participates in D & D Digital computer matching process. Applicants rank their choice of internships using codes supplied by D & D. There is a flat fee of $50 for this service. Registration with D & D begins in December.
UCA graduate school enrolled is required of dietetic interns. Information on graduate school admission requirements can be found at www.uca.edu/graduateschool/
Interns are required to enroll and pay for 24 hours of graduate credit. The outline below details the breakdown of the hours:
Admission Summer – Management Emphasis –
Summer I (6 hours)- FACS 5321 Nutrition Services Administration
FACS 5315 Nutrition Services Practicum I
Summer II (6 hours)- FACS 5316 Nutrition Services Practicum II
FACS 5317 Community Nutrition Practicum
FALL BETWEEN SUMMERS (3 hours): FACS 5324 Nutritional Assessment
SPRING BETWEEN SUMMERS (3 hours): FACS 5330 – Special Topics – Diabetes Education
Second Summer - Clinical Emphasis
May Intersession (3 hours): FACS 5318 Clinical Nutrition Practicum
Summer II (3 hours): FACS 6313 Diet Therapy
NOTE: Students are expected to maintain a 3.0 average in all graduate level coursework.