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Nutrition and Hospitality Management

The Nutrition and Hospitality Management Program at AAMU is designed for students who possess a strong interest in the sociological, psychological, and economical aspects of food as it relates to nutritional status and world hunger. The program provides a broad education in the science of nutrition and preparation of food as related to an individual’s lifestyle, culture, and health.

The two concentrations within the Nutrition and Hospitality Management program are Hospitality Management and General Dietetics or the Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD).


The mission of the Didactic Program at Alabama A&M University is to produce graduates who have the academic preparation necessary for success in a supervised practice program leading to eligibility for the CDR credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist who is an active professional and engaged in lifelong learning.

  • Professional Association

    Students and graduates are eligible for membership in The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The Association grants student membership at a reduced rate, as long as they are enrolled in approved or accredited programs. Along with membership in the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, students become members of the North Alabama Dietetic Association (ALDA). Students are encouraged to join the local ALDA affiliation.

    Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website:

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  • Becoming a Registered Dietitian

    According to the ACEND web site, in order to become a registered dietitian, one must do the following:

    Complete a minimum of a bachelor’s degree at a US regionally accredited university or college, and course work accredited or approved by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND).

    Complete an ACEND-accredited supervised practice program at a health-care facility, community agency, or a foodservice corporation or combined with undergraduate or graduate studies. Typically, a practice program will run six to 12 months in length or a 1200-hour.

    Pass a national examination administered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). For more information regarding the examination, refer to CDR’s website.

    Complete continuing professional educational requirements to maintain registration.

    Additional certifications in specialized areas of practice, such as pediatrics, weight management, renal nutrition, nutrition support, and diabetes education are available for RD’s. These certifications are awarded through CDR, the credentialing agency for AND, and/or other medical and nutrition organizations recognized within the profession, but are not required.

    In addition to RD credentialing, many states have regulatory laws for dietitians and nutrition practitioners. Often these state requirements are met through the same education and training required to become an RD. Licensure for dietitians in Alabama is required. Information for Alabama licensure of dietitians may be viewed here ( Once registered, dietitians have a wide range of career options available to them.

    Finally, students are highly encouraged to take the GRE exam, late fall semester of their senior year. More and more internship programs are requiring a GRE score even though their internship does not have a master’s degree component. If a student has not taken the GRE, they may be limited in their application process.

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  • Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)

    The Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) at AAMU is offered in the undergraduate program in the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences and the Area of Nutrition and Hospitality Management as the General Dietetics option. Upon completion of the program, the student is qualified to apply for admission to an accredited dietetic internship. Upon successful completion of the dietetic internship, the student is eligible to write the registration examination to become a registered dietitian.

    The dietetics concentration is appropriate for students who would like to become recognized nutritionists or registered dietitians. There are three steps to becoming a registered dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) including:

    • Completion of an ACEND accredited Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD)
    • Successfully obtaining and completing an accredited supervised work experience (dietetic internship)
    • Taking and passing a national registration examination
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  • Additional Information

    RD Exam Prep Course


    ACEND Website


    Dietetic Internship Program Directory


    DICAS Website


    DICAS Instructional Video


    D&D Digital Instructional Video

    D&D Digital Website


    Suggestions to improve your chances for Dietetic Internship


    ISSP Information

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    The Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) at AAMU is currently accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND) of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

    120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000,
    Chicago, IL 60606-6995
    800-877-1600 Ext 5400

    For additional program information, please contact:

    Nahid A. Sistani, Ph.D., RD, LD
    Interim Chair/Professor, Coordinator and DPD Director
    Nutrition and Hospitality Management
    Department of Family and Consumer Sciences
    Carver Complex South-Bonner Wing Room 108D
    Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University
    Normal, AL 35762
    Phone: 256-372-4105

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  • General Program Requirements

    Students are referred to the University Bulletin for specific requirements for admission and graduation for all students. Additional departmental program and DPD requirements include:

    1. Completion of all NHM and FCS courses with a minimum grade of C.
    2. Students are also required to maintain an overall and DPD GPA of at least 2.75 and 3.0, respectively, to maintain their DPD student status.
    3. Completion of required semester hours as listed by program areas. Students seeking verification of DPD completion must maintain a grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.0 in DPD completion courses (see advisor). In addition these students must achieve a grade of B or better in the following DPD courses: NHM 302L, NHM 407 and NHM 408L. Students are also strongly recommended to acquire work experience in patient care and food service.
    4. University Disciplinary and Termination Policies: The Dietetics program abides by the university policies regarding disciplinary action and termination procedures. Information is found at:
      Judicial Affairs - Student Code of Conduct
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Goal 1: Program graduates will successfully apply to accredited supervised practice programs, graduate school, or a career in food/nutrition.

  • Objectives 1: At least 80% of program students complete program/degree requirements within 6 years (150% of the program length)”. (DPD Program length is four years). [ACEND required]
  • Objectives 2:  40% of program graduates apply for admission to a supervised practice program prior to or within 12 months of graduation. [ACEND required]
  • Objectives 3:  60% of program graduates are admitted to a supervised practice program within 12 months of graduation. [ACEND required]
  • Objective 4: At least 80% of graduates who did not begin supervised practice program within 12 months of graduation will obtain employment in dietetics or a related field or plans to apply to supervised practice in the future. [ACEND required]

Goal 2: Graduate will add to the cadre of historically under-represented individuals who are successful professionals in delivering food and nutrition services to the people of Alabama and beyond.

  • Objectives 1: At least 80% of program graduates will rate overall satisfaction with program at 3.0 or higher on a five-point scale. [ACEND required]
  • Objectives 2:  At least 80% of supervised practice program directors will rate satisfaction with preparation of DPD graduates at 3.0 or above on a five-point scale. [ACEND required]
  • Objectives 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%. [ACEND required]


Program outcomes dates are available upon request.


Nahid A. Sistani, Ph.D., RD, LD
Interim Chair/Professor, Coordinator and DPD Director
Department of Family and Consumer Sciences Carver Complex South-Bonner Wing RM 108D
Phone: 256-372-4105