Highly anticipated Nutrition and Dietetics program now available in Meridian, Idaho.

The program has been widely requested for years as credentialing requirements increase.

IDAHO DIETITIANS–Dietetics education is changing in the great state of Idaho as Idaho State
University’s Department of Nutrition and Dietetics will soon offer a Bachelor of Science in
Dietetics to those in the Treasure Valley, based on demand for the program and the growing
need for registered dietitian nutritionists (RDNs) in the area. The only program of its kind in the
state, it will offer ten seats for qualified students in the first cohort, beginning in fall 2024.

“The landscape for dietitians is changing in Idaho,” says Char Byington, department chair at
ISU. “Beginning this year, dietitians in Idaho must now have a master’s degree to take the credentialing exam to become an RDN. The bachelor’s degree in Dietetics is the first step toward that degree, so we are thrilled to be able to offer it both at our campus in Pocatello and now in Meridian.” 

Jenifer Reader, the undergraduate program director, says their newly renovated Foods Lab in
Pocatello, with state-of-the-art equipment, provides the ideal learning space for the introductory
Foods and Experimental Foods courses are required for the degree. In Meridian, Renaissance
High School’s culinary arts kitchen will provide the lab space for students in these courses. Distance learning classrooms are also equipped to teach classes to students from either location.

“This expansion offers an option for students to pursue a career as an RDN more easily
Idaho. Our program incorporates various experiential learning opportunities for undergraduate
students, and I am looking forward to collaborating with new community partners in the
Treasure Valley,” Reader adds.

An internship program for Nutrition and Dietetics students has been available in the Treasure
For nearly 20 years, Valley allowed students to obtain an additional certificate beyond the
bachelor’s degree. In 2019, the internship program was converted to a master’s degree program
in response to the upcoming credentialing exam requirements. To accommodate the
increase in students for the bachelor’s program, one new faculty member will be added to teach
the additional courses in Meridian. 

The job outlook is bright for those in this industry, particularly in the Treasure Valley and Magic
Valley areas. Byington explains that in health care, in particular, these jobs genuinely reach across the
lifespan of individuals, with nutrition education and care needed from early childhood to older adults.