There are two options for applying to our internship program – the preselect option
and the traditional matching DICAS process. Details are outlined below. To be eligible
for acceptance into the program, students choosing either option must complete the
- an undergraduate degree;
- completion of a Didactic Program in Dietetics meeting the academic requirements of
the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
- an acceptable grade point average (> 3.00 on a four point scale);
- acceptable scores on the Graduate Record Examination at or above the 50th percentile.
- applicants must also demonstrate interest in the field of clinical nutrition and the
UM Program by a letter of application, documentation of work experience in the area,
and 3 letters of reference from parties that know your academic or nutrition or foods-related
work experience well.
Twelve interns are admitted to the program each year. Under the pre-select option,
four of the slots may be filled early. For the pre-select option, preference will
be given for students with outstanding qualifications who are (or will be by August
of each year):
1) graduates of the University of Memphis undergraduate dietetics program
2) members of an demographic group under-represented in the dietetics profession.
Pre-select is a two-part process while the traditional match has an extra step to
complete the process.
1. For both pre-select and traditional match:
Application to the Master’s Degree/Dietetic Internship (Clinical Nutrition) Program
at the University of Memphis must be made: Formal application to the Clinical Nutrition
program is achieved by either of the following:
- For pre-select only: completed paper copy of AND application for internship
- For traditional match only: completed DICAS AND application & use of D &D system of
Additionally, for both pre-select and traditional match, the following information
is also required:
a. One official transcript from each undergraduate school attended (please send paper
b. Three recommendation letters on AND recommendation form; the letters should be from
parties that know your academic or nutrition and/or foods-related work experience
c. Personal letter of application with statement of goals and professional interests
addressed to the chair of the selection committee and should take the form of a business
letter, including a signature. This letter should be used to provide information about
you that will not be found in the rest of your application. Areas you might cover
include: how you became interested in the field of nutrition; your personal goals;
how skills you have developed through work, school, or hobbies will make you a successful
intern and dietitian; special challenges you may have faced; if you have a deficiency
in your application, why that has happened. Finally, discuss how you heard about
this program, why you feel this program is best for you and the UM program. Your letter
should give us a feel for who you are and should not be more than 2 pages long, and
display exceptional grammar, spelling, and punctuation skills.
d. GRE Test: Quantitative, verbal and analytical Writing Scores. Scores are reported
on the AND application but official scores are not necessary for the initial review;
a snapshot will suffice.
e. Declaration of intent to complete an AND approved Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
or verification of completion of an AND approved DPD (obtained from the director of
your undergraduate didactic program)
f. Non-refundable application fee of $35.00. Checks should be made payable to: The University
of Memphis. Include an e-mail address to receive immediate confirmation when check
is received. A mailing address is also required to mail an official receipt. Due
to the bureaucratic nature of a large institution, it can take several weeks after
the check was mailed to receive it in the clinical nutrition department. Please do
not contact the director or clinical coordinator until ample time has passed. Our
receiving your check late does not make you ineligible for consideration of your application.
As long as your application was received by DICAS or early admission by the due date,
we will consider your application.
FOR PRE-SELECT: Send paper application, accompanying materials (a-f) and application fee to: Ruth
Williams-Hooker, Selection Committee Chair, University of Memphis Master’s Degree/Dietetic
Internship Program, 161A2 Fieldhouse, Health and Sport Sciences, Memphis, TN 38152.
Applications for the pre-select option must be received by the 2nd Monday in January.
Candidates that are pre-selected will be notified at the end of January.
FOR TRADITIONAL-MATCH: Application materials for the Clinical Nutrition program must be filed electronically
through the DICAS System. Application for the April match must be submitted by the
second week in February. Your undergraduate didactic director can provide more information
about this process. The $35.00 program application fee should be mailed to: Ruth Williams-Hooker,
Selection Committee Chair, University of Memphis Master’s Degree/Dietetic Internship
Program, 161 A3 Fieldhouse, Health and Sport Sciences, Memphis, TN 38152.
2. For Traditional Match Only:
In addition to the above steps, the prospective intern must make entry into the D
& D Digital Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Internship Matching. Applications for
the April match must be received by D & D no later than the second week in February.
Check the D & D site for the exact deadline date. Applications received after the
postmark deadline will not be considered. More information about D & D may be obtained
from your undergraduate didactic director.
The following policies were developed to ensure that each dietetic intern receives
frequent feedback throughout the course of the internship, and understands the requirements
necessary for program completion and award of Dietetic Internship Verification Statement.
Dietetic Intern Evaluation Process
The evaluation of the dietetic intern is measured using a variety of formative and
summative strategies. Formative strategies assess the student's progress, and summative
strategies evaluate knowledge and performance at the end of rotations and courses
and at the end of the Dietetic Internship.
1. Frequent verbal feedback from the preceptors, clinical coordinator, and internship
director will be provided to the dietetic intern throughout all rotations and projects.
The interns will receive formative oral feedback throughout the program thus the written
summative evaluation at the end of the rotation or project should not contain any
feedback that was not shared throughout the rotation.
2. The dietetic intern must complete 100% of the assigned learning activities. Standardized
competency outcomes (SCOs) are provided for each rotation and intern. The preceptor
will review all SCOs to confirm that all work has been completed and evaluate the
interns on each SCO and overall performance in the rotation using the prescribed evaluation
forms. At the conclusion of a rotation, an intern receiving an overall rating of less
than 3 (Entry Level) on the Professional Performance Evaluation will meet with the
internship director, clinical coordinator and preceptor to discuss a plan for performance
improvement. The intern may be required to repeat the rotation experience or be assigned
additional work to meet the educational objectives of the rotation. Students not receiving
a score of 3 after remediation, and following the appropriate disciplinary action
procedures will be dismissed from the dietetic internship.
3. The dietetic interns must maintain a 3.0 cumulative grade point average in the
University of Memphis graduate courses required during the dietetic internship program.
4. The dietetic intern must complete 100% of all assigned projects and all projects
must be completed with a grade of 80% or better. Any performance that is unsatisfactory
(below 80%) must be performed again for re-evaluation.
5. The dietetic intern must demonstrate professionalism at all times during rotations
and related professional development activities as assessed via verbal feedback from
preceptors, clinical coordinator and internship director, and as rated on the Professional
Performance Evaluation Form completed at the end of every rotation. If at any time
a performance evaluation rating or verbal feedback suggests a lack of professionalism
(e.g., disrespectful interactions, cheating, lying, plagiarism, forgery, violates
confidentiality), the incidence(s) will be investigated and the dietetic intern may
be dismissed from the program, or placed on probation and removed from a rotation
and/or will be assigned additional work and/or counseling until an acceptable level
of professionalism is achieved.
6. Self-assessments are completed by the intern throughout their rotations.
7. Dietetic interns unwilling or unable to meet all of the standards described above
will not be allowed to continue in the Dietetic Internship program.
Dietetic Intern Program Completion Requirements
To earn the Dietetic Internship Verification Statement, the dietetic intern must:
- Maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in graduate courses.
- Complete supervised practice rotations with an overall rotation evaluation score of
> 3 Entry Level”.
- Complete staff relief and residency assignments with preceptor using the facilities
performance evaluation forms used for staff dietitians and receive a score that would
be considered “meets expectations” or above per facility standards.
- Complete all paperwork associated with Competency Outcomes.
In the event that a student in the dietetic internship:
- Exhibits habitual disregard of policies and procedures of the program, department,
- Is absent or late without cause and/or proper notification
- Acts dishonestly
- Uses/has possession of alcohol or illegal drugs immediately before or while on duty
and/or the use of which affects classroom or supervised practice
- Takes on responsibilities without authority
- Violates confidentiality of a patient/client action may be taken to dismiss the student
from the dietetic internship.
If upon review of the above criteria, it is determined that a dietetic intern is failing
to meet performance criteria, the dietetic internship director confers with the dietetic
intern regarding performance and/or conduct and implements a plan for improvement
that includes the following:
1. Written guidelines for improved performance within designated time frames
2. Copies of the guidelines are given to the dietetic intern, preceptor to whom the
intern is assigned, and the department director.
3. The dietetic intern’s performance is evaluated by the dietetic internship director,
clinical coordinator, and preceptor based on the predetermined time schedule as outlined
in written guidelines.
Based upon completed rotation evaluations, the dietetic internship director, in consultation
with the clinical coordinator, department chair, and college dean makes the final
decision on the disposition of the dietetic intern. The disposition will include one
of the following:
1. The dietetic intern improved performance during the probationary period and is
assumed to be able to graduate with the rest of the class unless other problems arise.
2. The dietetic intern is advised that additional time will be required before he/she
can graduate. The time cannot exceed two semesters.
3. The intern is asked to leave the program because it is determined that competencies
cannot be reached in any reasonable length of time
Successful Completion of Internship Requirements
After the program director verifies that each intern has completed all requirements
for program completion, Verification Statements are awarded. Verification Statements
must be signed and dated with month/date/year in two places: (1) when the individual
completed program requirements and (2) the date the Verification Statement was signed
by the dietetic internship director. The program director’s signature must be in an
ink color other than black to distinguish an original from a photocopy.