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Entrance Requirements

  • A baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Successful completion of an ACEND accredited didactic program in dietetics (DPD Verification Statement).
    • The degree and all course work must be successfully completed before the internship begins. 
    • Degrees granted more than five years prior to application must be updated through completion of additional course work in MNT/the Nutrition Care Process and food systems management.
  • We DO NOT require a personal interview for acceptance into the Vanderbilt Dietetic Internship.
  • The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is not required for admission or application.

International Applicants

Applicants with pre-requisite course work from an institution outside of the United States MUST have an official, detailed translation of their coursework into the US equivalency sent to the program from the World Education Services (WES). International applicants who do not provide official documentation of acceptable US course and degree equivalency will not be considered during the application process.

VUMC is not able to admit international students at this time. Green Card holders are not considered International Applicants and are therefore eligible for admission consideration.

  • The program considers applicants as an international student if the applicant is a citizen of any nation other than the United States of America. Applicants will not be considered as an international student if you are a dual U.S. citizen, U.S. Permanent Resident, refugee/asylee, or a U.S. citizen living abroad. 

Graduation Requirements

A variety of experiences are planned to enable the dietetic intern to attain competence for entry level dietitians as outlined in the Standards of Education. The planned activities for each rotation, professional development days and special projects are minimum requirements for every intern. Experience and initiative of the intern will determine the objectives accomplished beyond the minimum.

Code of Ethics: Interns are expected to comply with the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice of The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Evaluation of professional development occurs throughout the program.

Measuring Performance: A numerical system is used to ascertain that the intern has attained entry-level competence. An overall average score of 70 is required for continuance in the program at mid-term. A minimum score of 80 must be achieved to meet requirements for graduation in the following:

  • as an end of year average
  • as a group score in each of the 5 competency categories (includes concentration competency)
  • and on specified projects

Verification Statement: Upon successful completion of the dietetic internship, the graduate will receive a verification statement which enables them to establish eligibility to take the national registration examination for dietitians.


The Vanderbilt Dietetic Internship Program provides comprehensive supervised practice experiences as a route to eligibility for the national credentialing examination for Registered Dietitians as well as for licensure in Tennessee. Many states require licensure before being able to practice as a Registered Dietitian. Please check licensure guidelines for the state in which you plan to seek employment.

Steps to Becoming a Registered Dietitian

1. Minimum of a Baccalaureate degree granted by a U.S. regionally accredited college/university

2. Completion of an Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics.

3. Completion of a supervised practice program: Accredited Dietetic Internship Program.

4. Receipt of a dietetic internship verification statement upon successful completion of academic and practice requirements. 

5. Successfully passing the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) national credentialing examination for registered dietitians. 

6. Licensure (varies by state).