Dietetic Internship Program

The Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship provides a unique opportunity for interns to experience a variety of rotations through Cedars-Sinai and the community we serve. The dietetic internship provides a concentration in medical nutrition therapy and includes rotations in food service management, community nutrition and research. Cedars-Sinai is committed to training medical professionals of tomorrow while setting new standards for quality and innovation in patient care.

The Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship is a 43-week program beginning in August with a two-week orientation and ending in May. Upon successful completion of the internship, dietetic interns are eligible for active membership in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) and to take the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

The mission of the Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship is to provide a learning environment that prepares innovative, well-rounded, entry-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionists (RDNs) to become future leaders in the nutrition profession. Cedars-Sinai strives to provide quality, compassionate care to the patients and community we serve. We are committed to:

  • Fostering an educational foundation with the provision of high-quality nutrition care for all patients
  • Encouraging the acknowledgement of diversity and individuality in our patients, staff and community
  • Modeling and teaching integrity with high ethical standards
  • Cultivating dietitians to think critically, share innovative ideas and be inquisitive
  • Increasing diversity in the nutrition and dietetics profession
  • Providing a supportive learning environment that fosters a team approach in clinical nutrition, food service management, research and ambulatory/community nutrition

Program Goal 1: Graduates are competent for entry level practice as RDNs. 

Program Goal 2: Graduates assume positions in a variety of career opportunities and leadership roles within the profession of nutrition and dietetics.

Requirements and Process to Become a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
  • All interns are required to complete the internship in full and meet the competencies, duties and responsibilities set forth for the internship.
  • Evaluations on the interns' performance will be completed by each preceptor after each rotation.
  • Trimester evaluations with the internship director will also measure progress and review of all evaluations.
  • Interns must meet an overall satisfactory rating or above for all evaluations, projects and case studies.
  • If an intern fails to complete a project or any supervised practice hours due to circumstances beyond their control, these projects/hours must be made up prior to graduation from the program.
  • If an intern fails to achieve this, we will assign remedial work to allow the intern to succeed.
  • If the intern has not improved in performance and competencies remain below a satisfactory rating, the intern may be removed from the program without tuition reimbursement. A detailed description of minimum performance standards can be found in the intern policies and procedures.
  • Upon successful completion of the dietetic internship program, interns will receive a verification statement the last week of the internship at the exit interview indicating that the internship has been completed.
  • Interns are then eligible to become active members of AND and to sit for the Registration Examination for Dietitians administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR).
Internship Program Costs
  • Tuition: $12,000 
  • Parking permit: $30 (one-time fee)
  • Books/software: $300
  • Professional liability insurance: $19 per year 
  • AND Student Member Annual Fee: $58 per year
  • Los Angeles District of AND Membership Fee: $21 per year
  • Health insurance: $100/month (variable) 
  • Conferences: $100 (variable)
  • Living expenses: approx. $2,500/month
Eligibility

Applicants will need to have completed or be in the process of completing:

  • An accredited didactic program in dietetics as specified by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.
  • A signed verification Statement or declaration of intent to complete degree.
  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Approved Minimum Academic Requirements form (also called the DPD Course List form) must be completed.

The intern will provide a signed verification statement with original signature by the start date of the internship.

Students selected for the dietetic internship must have completed a minimum of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution. Academic coursework must have been completed within three years before the date of entrance to the internship. If coursework is older, the applicant must complete an upper division course in physiology and clinical nutrition prior to entrance into the internship.

Effective 2024, the Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship will require a graduate degree (MS or MPH) to be eligible for admission.

Selection Criteria

The selection committee for the Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship Program uses the following criteria when reviewing applications:

  • Academics—applicants need a minimum grade of B in physiology, medical nutrition therapy and advanced nutrition courses.
  • Work Experience—work experience related to nutrition or food service is a benefit. We value experience that demonstrates responsibility, dependability, time management, cooperation and leadership.
  • Extracurricular Activities—we will consider involvement in activities that demonstrate an ability to problem solve and collaborate with others.
  • References—references should include two faculty members and one employer. References should mention the applicant's abilities, such as leadership, academics, self-motivation, time management, communication skills and cooperation skills.
  • Personal Statement Essay—personal statement must address the applicant's professional goals and indicate the student's independence, ability to collaborate, leadership skills, organizational planning and writing ability.
  • Interview—selected applicants will be contacted in early March to schedule an interview with the selection committee. The in-person interview is a mandatory part of the selection process. We appreciate the opportunity to get to know the applicants to the program. Please be willing to be flexible to attend the interview.

Cedars-Sinai is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Food and Nutrition Services is dedicated to increasing diversity in the nutrition and dietetics profession.

How to Apply

Applicants must provide:

  • A signed "Verification Statement of Completion" showing completion of the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) curriculum with original signature.
  • A "Declaration of Intent to Complete" may be uploaded into DICAS during the application process.
  • A final transcript with completed bachelor's degree must be provided before the internship begins.

Applications can be accessed at portal.dicas.org. Email dicasinfor@dicas.org for assistance if you are having trouble accessing the application portal.

For references, applicants must include an email address for each reference. Reference forms will be emailed to each reference and can be completed online.

When applying via the DICAS portal, students will be asked to write a personal statement. Questions asked in the personal statement section for the Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship Program include:

  • Why do you want to enter the dietetics profession?
  • What experiences have helped to prepare you for this program?
  • What are your short-term and long-term goals?
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses, or areas needing improvement?

Please limit your personal statement to 1,000 words.

Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended should be sent directly to DICAS. For more instructions, go to portal.dicas.org.

Matching Information

All applicants to Dietetic Internships must participate in computer matching through D & D Digital Systems. The charge for computer matching is $50 for the first designation and $25 for each additional designation.

For more information, you can contact D & D:

D & D Digital Systems
304 Main St., Suite 301
Ames, IA 50010

Additional Information

Provide only three letters of recommendation. References should include two faculty members and one employer. Recommendations should be current, preferably submitted to DICAS within six months of application.

Supplemental Application Material

Please use the checklist below for material submitted to the Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship Program. Material must be submitted by Feb. 15 and include the following:

Materials should be sent to:

Stephanie Cramer, MS, RDN
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center-Food and Nutrition Services
6500 Wilshire Blvd, Suite 1820 
Los Angeles, CA 90048

It is suggested that you use Express Mail, FedEx or any method that guarantees delivery to us within three to four days past the postmark deadline. Please check mailing options so the postmark date is readily visible. Registered and regular mail may take up to two weeks to arrive. Select your mailing option carefully. All application materials must be received by Feb. 28 for the application to be considered.

Due to the number of applications we receive, we cannot confirm receipt of applications, forms or fees by phone or email. However, if you include a self-addressed, postage-paid postcard with your fee and Authorization form we will mail that back to you as a confirmation of receipt.

Selection Process

Cedars-Sinai will notify top-ranked applicants for an interview mid-March. This interview will take place prior to Applicant Notification Day in April. Five dietetic interns will be selected.

Students must notify the dietetic internship program director, Stephanie Cramer, MS, RDN, at 323-866-2847 or stephanie.cramer@cshs.edu if they accept/reject the computer match by 5 p.m. on appointment day of the program's time zone.

All information obtained during the application period will be held in a secure location for one year. After one year, applications will be moved to a secure disposal company.

Financial Aid Information

As a dietetic intern, you are not eligible for student loans. However, you may receive deferments for outstanding loans, if allowed by your lender. We can provide documentation of your status as a dietetic intern, or complete documents from the loan agency, to verify your status in an accredited certificate program.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation and many state dietetic associations have excellent scholarship programs. You should contact your advisor, the foundation or your state dietetic association for further information. The California Dietetic Association Foundation has a scholarship program for students who attended a California academic program. For more information, contact:

California Dietetic Association
7740 Manchester Ave., Suite 102
Playa del Rey, CA 90293

Dietetic Internship Program Schedule

Each intern has a unique schedule and will complete their rotations in a different order. In addition to supervised practice hours, interns are required to attend Monday classes at a variety of sites in the greater Los Angeles area. These hours are in addition to the 1,200 supervised practice hours in the assigned rotations. Topics covered may include but are not limited to: HIV/AIDS, laboratory values, counseling, nutritional assessment, drug/nutrient interaction, sports nutrition, personnel issues, labor unions, conflict resolution, state and federal legislation, marketing, communication skills, feeding disabilities, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics/California Academy structure and activities, and introduction to community agencies.

Sample Dietetic Internship Schedule

August: Orientation to DI
Aug-Dec: Medical Nutrition Therapy Rotation
Dec-Jan: Vacation 2 weeks (dates will vary)
Jan-Mar: Management Rotation
Mar-May: Community Rotation
May: Research Rotation

Weekly Intern Schedule Sample
Mondays: Attending class
Tues- Fri: Supervised Practice

Graduation and Program Completion Requirements

All interns are required to complete the competencies, supervised practice hours, duties and responsibilities of the Dietetic Internship Program in 10 months.

  • A written evaluation completed by each preceptor will be completed and reviewed with the intern. Trimester evaluations are conducted with the Internship Director.
  • Interns must meet competent or above > 70% (or >3.0 out of 4.0 scale) on all assignments, projects, case studies. If an intern fails to complete an assignment or any supervised practice hours, these assignments or hours must be made up prior to graduation. 
    • If an intern fails to achieve this, the intern will receive a written statement documenting performance and expectations. Efforts will be made for repeat experiences in a rotation and/or remedial or individualized experiences to allow the intern to succeed. If the intern has not improved in performance and competencies remain at <3.0 on 4.0 scale, the intern may be placed on probation for up to 30 days.
    • During probation, the intern will be given every opportunity to correct the deficiencies. At the end of the probation, if the deficiency has not been corrected, the intern may be removed from the program without reimbursement of tuition fees.
  • Interns who are unable to meet completion requirements within 15 months of the start date will be terminated from the program unless there are extenuating circumstances. The internship director reserves the right to make a final decision about the feasibility of an intern completing the internship.
Program Objectives
  1. At least 80% of program interns complete program requirements within 15 months (150 percent of the program length).
  2. 80% of program graduates take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion.
  3. The program's one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within one year of first attempt) on the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80 percent.
  4. 80% of employed graduates will rate themselves as prepared or well prepared for their first position as an RDN. 
  5. Of graduates who seek employment, 80% are employed in nutrition and dietetics or related fields within 12 months of graduation.
  6. At least 80% of employers who return surveys will rate graduates as "satisfactory" or above in professional knowledge and leadership qualities during the first year of employment.
Program Outcomes Data
Program outcomes will be made available once data is collected after the first year. 
Accreditation Status

The Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship Program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995, 800-877-1600, extension 5400, acend@eatright.org. Accreditation confers all the rights and privileges to graduates upon successful completion of the program, including eligibility to take the CDR Registration Examination for Registered Dietitians.