Nutritionist and Dietitian Programs in Kansas
When it comes to food, nutrition and healthy dieting, nutritionists and dietitians are the experts. Dietitians and nutritionists might work directly with individuals to help develop healthy eating habits, or they might work for organizations, hospitals, schools, clinics, cafeterias and other settings where food choices should be healthy and suited for a particular population. They evaluate the food offerings, adjust them to suit government or individual guidelines, evaluate the effects of the meal change, explain nutrition issues and educate the public on healthy eating.
Those who work directly with individuals can assess dietary practices, assist the client make appropriate changes, and then follow-up on a regular basis to track the effects of the new meal plan. They might also work closely with patients who have eating disorders in order to help ensure their optimum health and recovery.
Dietitian Training in Kansas
Those interested in pursuing a dietitian or nutritionist career in Kansas should find the process similar to that of many other states. Although the requirements can vary depending on the career path, or area of specialization, most routes to a career begin with a bachelor's degree. Example degree areas include nutrition or related fields, such as dietetics, health sciences, food service system management and more.
Following the completion of a degree program, aspiring nutritionists and dietitians are typically required to complete a set number of supervised practice hours, as well as pass a state-approved exam in order to practice professionally.
Several licenses and certifications are available, including the following:
- Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN). An individual who has been trained at the technical level to provide the delivery of safe, quality food and nutritional services.
- Registered Dietitian (RD). An individual who has met the academic and professional requirements to qualify for the credential of RD and may be considered a nutritional expert.
- Dietetic Technician Registered (DTR). An individual who has been training to assist an RD in the delivery of quality, culturally caring food and nutritional services.
- Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS). An individual who has completed a master's degree in nutrition or a related field and has passed a course on science-based nutrition therapy.
There are other credentials possible as well, including the board certified specialist in renal nutrition (CSR) and the board certified specialist in pediatric nutrition (CSP), among others.
Registered Dietitian Requirements in Kansas
Prospective dietitians in Kansas must obtain a license in order to move into practice. New applicants should complete the following steps to earn a dietetic license in Kansas, according to the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services:
- Earn a bachelor's, master's or PhD degree that includes a course of study that has been approved by the American Dietetic Association, is accredited, or has been deemed an equivalent by the Secretary of Aging and Disability Services
- Complete 900 hours of supervised and approved dietetic experience
- Pass the Commission of Dietetic Registration test
Individuals who have not yet passed the test can apply for a temporary license while they work their way toward the requirement. After earning a dietitian license, registered dietitians are required by the state to earn continuing professional education (CPE) hours to maintain an active license. The state of Kansas requires 15 CPE credit hours on a biennial basis.
Other credentials might have additional requirements. To be certain of the expectations, the Commission on Dietetic Registration is a good place to begin research. For more information on how to become a nutritionist in Kansas, start with the requirements listed at the Kansas Department for Aging and Disability Services.
Kansas also allows professionals prepared in other states to put their qualifications towards a dietetic license in Kansas, although there is a different set of licensing standards for that process.
For more information:
Health Occupations Credentialing
Department of Health and Environment
Curtis State Office Building
1000 S.W. Jackson, Suite 200
Topeka, KS 66612-1365
Nutritionist Salary and Career Outlook in Kansas
According to the Kansas Department of Labor’s Labor Market Information Services, as of 2012 dietitians and nutritionists made a median annual wage of $50,330 (ks.gov, 2013). Additionally, from 2010 to 2020 nutritionists and dietitians may experience an employment growth of up to 19 percent. This is comparable to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ national outlook of up to 20 percent for nutritionists and dietitians during the same time period (bls.gov, 2012).
Information provided by the BLS (bls.gov/oes, 2013)
Commission on Dietetic Registration, http://cdrnet.org/
Dietitian Information, , http://www.kdads.ks.gov/HOC/Dietitian/Dietitian_Index.html
Laws that Regulate Dietitians/Nutritionists, , http://cdrnet.org/vault/2459/web/files/Licensurelawsregulations.pdf
Licensure CPE Requirements by State, Commission on Dietetic Registration, http://cdrnet.org/pdp/licensure-cpe-requirements-by-state
, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment Statistics, May 2012, Nutritionists and Dietitians in Kansas - http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_ks.htm
, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition, Dietitians and Nutritionists - http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Healthcare/Dietitians-and-nutritionists.htm
, 2012 Kansas Wage Survey, Labor Market Information Services - https://klic.dol.ks.gov/gsipub/index.asp?docid=436