Dietetic Internship at Northwell Health

About our program

The Northwell Health Dietetic Internship Program prepares individuals to transition from student to professional by integrating didactic knowledge of food and nutrition with practical experience in dietetics. This program focuses on medical nutrition therapy and will take 40 weeks to complete.

One class of 12 interns is admitted annually. Interns are based at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset and complete rotations at Northwell Health facilities throughout Long Island, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island and Westchester County. Graduates of this program will receive a verification statement that will establish eligibility to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

Applicants interested in our program are encouraged to attend the open house informational session held once a year in December at North Shore University Hospital in the Kaufman Conference Center auditorium. Please RSVP by emailing Luz E. Valencia-Penagos at [email protected]  or by calling (516) 562-8514.

Application & acceptance requirements

Northwell Health Dietetic Internship application

The Northwell Health Dietetic Internship Program online application deadline is February 1. All applications are to be submitted through Dietetic Internship Centralized Application Services (DICAS). The DICAS website lists and provides directions for all general application requirements.

The early application deadline allows for qualified applicants to be notified regarding a personal interview by February 15, the date of the national computer matching. Applicants are screened by an admissions committee and are considered without regard to age, sex, race, creed, national origin or physical handicap.

There is an application fee of $50. Please see the fees and expenses section below for more information.

A GPA of 3.0 is required. The Northwell Health Dietetic Internship requires the following information be addressed in your DICAS application materials:

  • Personal statement – Please address the following points in 1,000 words or less:
    • Examples of leadership, time management, teamwork and customer service orientation that have helped prepare you for your career
    • Your short-term and long-term goals
    • Your strengths and areas needing improvement
    • Why you choose the Northwell Health Dietetic Internship
    • Any other information that you feel would assist the committee in making the decision to admit you to the internship program
  • Recommendations - Three recommendations are required, two of which should be from college instructors in the applicant's major field of study. If you have already graduated and are working, the references can be from your employer and/or supervisor(s).

Computer matching

Applicants must participate in computer matching through D&D Digital Systems. The code #185 must be listed when selecting the Northwell Health Dietetic Internship. Please note that the Northwell Health internship participates in spring matching only.

Refer to D&D Digital’s website for application information and deadline submission. If you have any questions, you can contact D&D Digital at (515) 292-0490 or [email protected].

Acceptance requirements

Applicants must hold a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a United States (US) regionally accredited college or university and course work accredited by the ACEND.  International students must have the academic degree validated as equivalent to the bachelor's or master's degree conferred by a US regionally-accredited college or university and course work accredited by the ACEND.

Upon acceptance into the program, interns will be asked to provide the below for registration and enrollment into the Northwell Health Dietetic Internship:

  • Completed official college transcripts: The DICAS internship application contains copies of the transcripts. The original documents are required for your registration (including all courses and date of degree conferral). If you are graduating during the application process, request the transcripts after graduation to ensure that the transcript will list the date of degree conferral.
  • Completed official verification statement:  The verification statement must bear the original signature of the Official Didactic Program Director with the date in month, day and year format for both the program completion date and the signature date by August 15.
  • Proof of medical insurance:  You must provide evidence of medical insurance.  Please bring in your medical insurance card along with front and back copies of the medical insurance card.
  • Professional liability insurance:  You must obtain professional liability insurance for a minimum of $1 million each incident/occurrence and $5 million aggregate.  Coverage should be effective by August 15.  A copy of the Memorandum of Insurance is required.

You may contact Mercer Consumer, a service of Mercer Health & Benefits Administration, LLC, an agency recommended by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, at (800) 503-9230 or proliability.com any time from 8am to 5pm CST, Monday through Friday.

  • Physical examination and immunization:  All interns will be scheduled for a physical examination by Employee Health Service Department. Immunization records will be reviewed and any required immunizations will be provided.
  • Screening for tuberculosis: Quantiferon Gold-TB blood test or Mantoux tuberculin test (PPD skin test): You must have this done by your primary physician or Employee Health Services after August 1.  A copy of the test result should be submitted by August 25. 
  • Drug testing, criminal background checks, and verification of student identity is facility specific and will be conducted as required. The facility will coordinate and cover any costs incurred.
  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics student membership:  You must maintain your student membership status during the internship. Please bring in a copy of your student membership card or proof of current membership.
  • Long Island Dietetic Association (LIDA) student membership:  You must become a member of, or renew your membership for, LIDA prior to starting the internship. Please request verification of membership and bring a copy with you.
  • Resume:  Please have an updated electronic copy of your resume available by orientation. It will be sent to your preceptors throughout the internship.

The above required documents will be due during the Northwell Health Dietetic Internship orientation. 

Our mission statement

In accordance with The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Standards of Professional Practice for Dietetic Professionals (2008) and the Standards of Education (1997) and consistent with the Northwell Health mission statement and the vision and values as defined therein:

Northwell Health Dietetic Internship strives to prepare individuals to transition from student to professional by integrating didactic knowledge of food and nutrition with practical experiences in nutrition and dietetics consistent with the preparation of entry-level registered dietitian nutritionists. The program will provide the highest quality clinical care; educate the current and future generations of dietetic practitioners; search for new advances in nutrition and food service through the conduct of outcomes-based dietetic research; and promote health education. 

Fees and expenses

Fees

The below fees cover application and enrollment costs:

Application fee: bank check, personal check or money order in the amount of $50 payable to Nutrition and Dining Services, NSUH. Credit cards are not accepted. Please include the following with your payment:

  • Applicant name
  • Email address
  • Telephone number
  • DICAS ID number
  • DPD program completed/in progress at (name of school)

Send your payment to:

North Shore University Hospital
Nutrition and Dining Service Department
300 Community Drive
Manhasset, NY 11030
Attn: Luz E. Valencia-Penagos, MS, RD, CDN, CNSC

  • D&D Digital Systems Inc. fee for national computer matching: $55
  • DICAS fee: $40 for one internship program; $20 for each additional program. 
  • Northwell Health Dietetic Internship enrollment fee: Bank check, personal check or money order in the amount of $12,000 payable to: Nutrition and Dining Services, NSUH. Credit cards are not accepted.
    • Payment options:
      • Option 1: Two payments of $6,000 each with the first payment due in July and the second payment due in August.
      • Option 2: One payment of $12,000 due in August. 
    • Withdrawal and refund of fees:
      • 100 percent before June 1
      • 75 percent before September 1
      • 50 percent before October 31
      • No refunds thereafter

Estimated expenses

Interns are responsible for housing, books, liability insurance, memberships and travel expenses. Following are estimated prices made in good faith.  Prospective interns are encouraged to do further price searching.

  • Housing: Interns will be responsible for securing housing in the immediate area. Rent for a studio apartment ranges from $1,200 to $1,800 per month. Rent for a one bedroom apartment ranges from $1,800 to $2,400 per month. 
  • Professional liability insurance: Interns are required to obtain professional liability insurance at their own expense (typically less than $45) for a minimum of $1 million for each incident and $5 million aggregate. 
  • Memberships:
    • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Student Fee: $65
    • Long Island Dietetic Association Student Fee: $20
  • Books: Estimated price $100
    • “Medical Terminology: A Short Course” by Davi-Ellen Chabner (Latest edition)
    • Leadership book assigned during summer orientation
  • Travel expenses: Interns are responsible for their own transportation, including public transportation costs and/ or personal vehicle expenses.
    • Northwell Health is a large health system.  Interns are based at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset and complete rotations at Northwell Health facilities throughout Long Island, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island and Westchester County.
    • Prior to the start of the internship, there will be three meeting days at North Shore University Hospital:
      • Mentoring day - one Sunday in May
      • Summer orientation - two weekdays in July
  • After the completion of the dietetic internship, the following expenses are estimated:
    • Examination fee to become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN): $200
      • Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) maintenance fee: $60 (billed after successfully passing the RDN examination)

New York State Certification as a Dietitian-Nutritionist (CDN): $294 

Financial support

Financial aid is not available for this program, but loan deferment is available as the internship is full-time status. We encourage you to look for scholarship opportunities, including those from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. For eligibility and application information, visit eatright.org.  

Program curriculum & schedule

The program requires a minimum of 1,455 hours of supervised practice. The intern may need to dedicate more hours to complete assignments. The program allows for 11 holidays:

  • Thanksgiving and the Friday after
  • December 24 through January 1
  • Martin Luther King Day
  • Washington's birthday
  • Memorial Day

In addition, interns have up to four days of scheduled time off.  Additional time lost to illness, absence or emergency leave must be rescheduled with the program manager.

Curriculum

Northwell Health Dietetic Internship provides a comprehensive clinical supervised practice where interns experience progression of nutrition skills from a community to a quaternary hospital, work together with a well-structured health care team to contribute to the best possible outcomes for patients, and develop communication skills interacting with diverse cultural populations at different stages of their lifespan.  The program offers a concentration in high-risk pregnancy and neonatal ICU nutrition providing graduates with unique skills as entry-level registered dietitians. 

Lectures and workshops will be presented on various clinical, food service management and community dietetics topics. The interns must attend seminars as scheduled.

The program is 40 weeks long (37.5 hours per week) and begins the last week of August.  The typical schedule breakdown is as follows:

Rotation Weeks
Clinical - Medical nutrition therapy  
Acute care 21
Long-term care 2
Outpatient 2
Food service management  
Institutional food service 5
Business plans 2
Food service skills 1
Community nutrition  
Hunger relief organization 1
Woman, Infants, and Children (WIC) program and community service 1
Elective 2
Orientation 2
Winter recess 1
Total number of weeks 40

The intern will receive the program schedule at orientation.

During the medical nutrition therapy portion of the curriculum, emphasis is placed on nutritional assessment and the relationship between the pathophysiology of disease to nutrition principles.

  • Interns work one-on-one with registered dietitians in all aspects of patient care at various hospitals within Northwell Health.
  • Acute care rotations include, but are not limited to: general medicine, cardiology, surgery, neurology, orthopaedics, maternity, oncology, adult and pediatric intensive care, bariatrics, psychiatry and nephrology.
  • The clinical schedule will include staff relief experience, during which the intern will work under the direction of the registered dietitian. This experience is meant to give the intern an opportunity to experience day-to-day responsibilities in a controlled setting.  The intern will not routinely replace the hours of paid employees.
  • Long-term care sites include experiences at rehabilitation and nursing homes.
  • Outpatient sites include various specialty areas. Interest areas are taken into consideration during placement.

The food service management rotation includes emphasis on institutional food management, financial management, completion of a business plan, purchasing, food production, food delivery systems, personnel management, computer applications to food service and nutrition analysis.

The community nutrition curriculum covers the lifespan and includes the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program and hunger relief organizations.

Graduation requirements

Please understand that interns are expected to meet the following requirements in order to obtain the verification statement at the end of the program. The verification statement is required in order to take the registration examination to become a registered dietitian.

  • Completion of all rotations, modules, assignments, case studies and presentations as evidenced by satisfactory evaluations by preceptors and program manager
  • Completion of Clinical I, Clinical II and Clinical III exams with a minimum score of 85 percent
  • Self-evaluation with the help of the preceptor after each section of the internship (clinical, food service and community)
  • Participation in a final evaluation process in order to receive your verification statement
  • Ethical performance in accordance with the values of The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics by following the standards of Professional Practice (2008) and The American Dietetic Association Code of Ethics (2009)
  • Demonstrated interest in providing the highest quality of nutrition care and service excellence

State certification

Dietetic internship graduates taking and passing the registration examination in order to become a registered dietitian could apply to become a "Certified Dietitian-Nutritionist,” "Certified Dietitian" or "Certified Nutritionist"  within New York State by applying to the New York State Education Department/ Office of the Professions/ Dietetics and nutrition. Click here for more information on certification requirements. 

Goals and objectives

Program goal one: To prepare program graduates to perform effectively as entry-level registered dietitian nutritionists in health care and other settings that foster strong clinical nutrition skills.

  • 90 percent of enrollees will graduate from the Northwell Health Dietetic Internship Program within 60 weeks or 15 months.
  • 80 percent of graduates who seek employment will secure entry-level positions in dietetics or nutrition-related fields within 12 months of graduation.
  • 90 pecent of graduates are expected to take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion.
  • 90 percent of graduates will pass CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists on the first attempt over a five-year period.
  • 90 percent of graduates will pass CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within one year following the first attempt over a five-year period.
  • Based on survey responses received, 80 percent of employers will rank graduates as competent entry-level practitioners one year post graduation. 
  • Based on survey responses received, 80 percent of graduates will rate themselves as “prepared” in entry level competencies for their present job one-year post graduation.
  • Based on survey responses received, 50 percent of graduates will enroll, are actively enrolled in, or completed a graduate program one-year post graduation.

Program goal two: To prepare program graduates who will demonstrate nutrition knowledge and skills in high-risk pregnancy and adult and neonate enteral and parenteral nutrition support.

  • Based on survey responses received, 80 percent of graduates, will rate themselves as “meeting” nutrition support competencies one year post graduation.
  • Based on survey responses received, 80 percent of graduates will rate themselves as “meeting” high-risk pregnancy competency one year post graduation.
  • Based on survey responses received, 80 percent of employers will rate graduate competency in nutrition support as meeting expectations one year post graduation.
  • Based on survey responses received, 80 percent of employers will rate graduate competency in high-risk pregnancy as meeting expectations one year post graduation.
(516) 562-8514
Get in touch with us!

Applicants invited for interview will be notified by email. For additional information on how to apply contact Luz E. Valencia-Penagos, MS, RD, CDN, CNSC.

  Email the Dietetic Internship Program