Master's Degree (MS) in Nutrition

Nutrition: The UDC Edge

As part of our land-grant mission of service to the community, the University of the District of Columbia has long been at the forefront of educating the next generation of nutrition specialists to combat nutrition-related diseases (e.g. obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart and kidney disease) and reduce health disparities among an urban and often underserved population.

The University’s location in the District of Columbia gives you the opportunity to collaborate with legislators and regulatory agencies in order to gain the advocacy skills needed to shape public policy related to nutrition issues and health disparities.

 

Master's Degree (MS) in Nutrition

Nutrition is not an issue we can avoid. It is an issue that impacts our lives everyday. Whether your motivation for studying nutrition comes from personal experience or simply a desire to change your community for the better, the University of the District of Columbia has a place for you.

The master's degree program in nutrition in the College of Agriculture, Urban Sustainability and Environmental Sciences (CAUSES) trains you to address the health and nutritional needs of urban and ethnically diverse populations and to be a leader in implementing the necessary laws and policies to reduce health disparities.

In addition to a strong foundation in science, the graduate program emphasizes public policy, technology and information systems, communication and clinical experiences.  You will work with leading experts in all areas of public health, applying your education to real life scenarios.

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Curriculum and Requirements in the UDC Nutrition Graduate Program

Applicants should already possess a bachelor's degree in nutrition. If you do not, you may have to take additional prerequisites in the sciences before gaining admission to the master's degree program in nutrition.

The master's degree in nutrition is a two-year program requiring 32 credit hours. The first year is entirely course work, while the second year consists of course work, research and a thesis.

Select courses include:

  • Group Design and Intervention
  • Nutrition Epidemiology
  • Politics: Public Policy and Health Issues
  • Medical Nutrition Therapy
  • Molecular Biology
  • Leadership in Organization
  • Mass Media for Public Administration
  • Pharmacology for Nutrition Professionals
  • Nutrition Research Methods

Student Organizations and Activities in the UDC Nutrition Graduate Program

The nutrition program at UDC has active chapters of the Student Dietetic Association and Minorities in Agriculture, Natural Resources and Related Sciences (MANNRS), which participate in outreach activities such as local community health fairs (including the NBC4 Health and Fitness Expo) and provide mentorship opportunities for students. In 2008 and 2010, UDC hosted the regional meetings for MANNRS.

Students also sponsor conferences through the local District of Columbia Metropolitan Area Dietetic Association and regional and national offices of MANNRS. 

Internship opportunities are available at local community agencies, health care facilities like the Specialty Hospital of Washington-Hadley Campus and D.C. public schools. While the national acceptance rate for acceptance into the dietetics internship program is 53 percent, UDC nutrition students have more than an 80 percent chance of acceptance.

Faculty Spotlight: UDC Nutrition Graduate Program

Dr. Prema Ganganna, PhD., RD., LD., is chair of the Department of Nutrition, with more than a quarter-century of experience in nutrition from the clinical, management, research and academic perspectives. In 2006, Ganganna visited China as a delegate dietitian and nutritionist and participated in an Oxford University roundtable on health and nutrition policy issues. She was also a member of the technical advisory panel on dietary modifications charged with recommending strategies for dietary modifications published by the Department of Health and Human Services, Commission of Public Health, Bureau of Cancer Control.

Career Pathways and Prospects

The master’s degree program in nutrition and dietetics will prepare you for the following careers:

  • Public policy advocate
  • Community educator
  • Policy analyst
  • Public policy evaluator
  • Lobbyist
  • Researcher
  • Manager in health service delivery organizations and systems, managed-care programs, and other population-based organizations.

You may find work in a range of settings:

  • Health care facilities (hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient care centers, physicians’ offices)
  • Federal, state or local government agencies (such as the USDA, FDA, school lunch programs, Headstart)
  • Nonprofit organizations (such as the American Heart Association or the National Cancer Society)
  • Food services industry
  • Pharmaceutical companies
  • Self-employment/consulting

Additional Resources:

Contact info:

E: pganganna@udc.edu | T: 202.274.5516 | F: 202.274.5577