There are a wide range of nutrition courses and degree programs offered in Minnesota. Students have the opportunity to take individual nutrition courses that cover the basics of food and diet, but there are also degree programs that cover nutrition science, dietetic technology and food science. These degree programs are meant to train students for careers as nutritionists, dietitians, and food scientists. Some schools offer internships for students to gain direct clinical experience in working with nutritionists and clients.
Learn more about the courses and programs related to nutrition available in Minnesota, as well as about the schools that offer them by reading on.
College of Saint Benedict
This Saint Joseph college offers a Bachelor of Arts in Nutrition for students who are interested in careers as nutritionists or other diet and food science specialists. Within the program, students can choose a concentration in dietetics, nutrition science or food studies, or they can opt for a general nutrition program with no concentration. In general, courses cover food science, diet and health, public health, nutrition therapy and nutrition education. A research seminar and capstone class are requirements for the degree. The general nutrition program, nutrition science concentration and food studies concentration do not prepare students for state licensure; however, the dietetics concentration fulfills the requirements necessary to become a registered dietician and later obtain state licensure, provided students complete a postgraduate internship.
Students who enroll at this Moorhead college can major in food, nutrition and dietetics. As part of the undergraduate degree program, students take classes in food science, food production, fundamental microbiology, statistics and human anatomy. Before earning a Bachelor of Arts, students must complete a final capstone class. The program prepares students for dietetic internships so that they can qualify to become registered dieticians and earn state licensure. There is a minor available for students who want to major in another discipline but still gain a general understanding of food and nutrition.
Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College
At this Cloquet school, students can earn an Associate of Science in Nutrition in two years. Classes cover microbiology, food safety, human anatomy and chemistry. The degree program prepares students for a range of careers in health care, education and food science. The program does not prepare students for licensure as nutritionists or dieticians, but graduates can transfer to four-year universities to work on fulfilling licensure requirements.
Inver Hills Community College
This Grove Heights school does not offer degree programs in nutrition, but students can choose from a handful of nutrition classes. For instance, the nutrition course offers an introduction to the role of diet in a person's health. Students learn how the body takes in and processes nutrients, and they discuss topics in weight control and nutrition. The school also offers other classes in personal and public health. These courses can be applied toward an associate degree.
Mayo Graduate School
Located in Rochester, this school offers continuing education courses in nutrition. The curriculum is designed specifically for physicians, nurses, dietitians and other health specialists who want to learn more about nutrition in medical settings. Topics cover nutrition supplements, weight management and disease prevention through diet. Classes vary and can include panel discussions, lectures and case studies. While continuing education classes won't qualify one for licensure, they can be applied toward maintaining it.
Minnesota State College - Southeast Technical
Students who enroll at this Winona school can choose between two nutrition courses. The first is a general nutrition course that covers the basics of the discipline and the role of nutrition in the human body. Students explore their own diets and gain an understanding of the significance of a positive nutritional lifestyle. The second course covers health, safety and nutrition. Students learn how healthy nutrition can prevent illness as well as how to handle health emergencies. Emphasis is placed on how to create a safe environment for young children and meet their nutritional needs.
Minnesota West Community and Technical College
Located in Granite Falls, Minnesota West Community and Technical College offers a basic nutrition class and an Associate of Science in Food Science program. For the nutrition class, students gain a basic overview of the field by learning about the relationship between food and the human body. There's also a focus on food and dietary assessments and ways to improve diet. For the associate degree program, students take classes in microbiology, chemistry, anatomy, physiology and basic nutrition. The associate degree program does not prepare one for licensure, but students who earn this degree are likely prepared for a bachelor's degree program in nutrition.
Normandale Community College
Students who study at this Bloomington school can choose between continuing education nutrition courses or an Associate of Applied Science in Dietetic Technology. The continuing education courses can be taken by individuals who are new to the field as well as by professionals looking to maintain licensure. The nutrition classes change frequently to stay current with the latest research. One class may focus on the habits of healthy eaters, while another teaches students about gluten intolerance. Another course concentrates on food as energy and as natural medicine and another looks at balancing the thyroid hormone.
The associate degree program is for students who want to enter careers as dietetic technicians. Students gain an in-depth understanding of nutrition through courses that cover food systems management, principles of nutrition, medical nutrition therapy and experimental foods. Students are also required to take part in clinical experiences. Though Minnesota does not require licensure for dietetic technicians, completion of the associate degree program qualifies graduates to take the Registration Examination for Dietetic Technicians given by the Commission on Dietetic Registration.
St. Catherine's University
At this Saint Paul university, students can major in nutrition: science. The school gives students the option of earning a Bachelor of Arts or a Bachelor of Science in the discipline. As part of the program, students take classes in biology, chemistry, nutrition and food sciences. By the final year of study, students are required to take part in an internship and complete a medical nutrition therapy course. There are research opportunities for students who want to learn about the latest in food sciences and nutrition. The program is not designed to prepare students for dietician licensure, but for graduate school, medical school and other health care programs.
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities
Students enrolled at this Minneapolis school can choose from a number of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in food science and nutrition. At the undergraduate level, the Bachelor of Science in Food Science program prepares students for careers as food scientists and researchers. Students in the undergraduate nutrition program must choose from one of three tracks: the nutrition studies track, didactic program in dietetics (DPD) track or nutritional science track. The DPD track is the only undergraduate option that prepares students to take on postgraduate internships and become registered dieticians, qualifying them to later earn state licensure. The nutritional science track is meant for students who want to pursue a professional program in the health care field or attend graduate school, while the nutrition studies track is designed for students who have a strong interest in the subject but do not want to become registered dieticians.
Graduate students can earn a Master of Science in Food Science or a Master of Science in Nutrition. Students who aspire to conduct independent research in the field can choose between a Doctor of Philosophy in Food Science or a Doctor of Philosophy in Nutrition. The graduate nutrition programs offer students the opportunity to take part in a dietetic internship, which counts toward the requirements to become a registered dietician and earn state licensure as a nutritionist or dietician. The food science programs are geared toward students who want to work in the food industry and evaluate the quality and safety of different foods.
To become licensed as a nutritionist in Minnesota, applicants are required to have completed a postgraduate program in nutrition or a related area and obtained at least 900 hours of supervised experience. Dieticians need to have completed a bachelor's or postgraduate program in nutrition or a related area, obtained at least 900 hours of supervised experience and passed the Commission on Dietetic Registration's registration exam to receive state licensure. Licensed dieticians and nutritionists in Minnesota must earn 45 continuing education units every three years to maintain licensure.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Nutrition Courses and Degree Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition and Fees (2018-2019)|
|College of Saint Benedict||4-year, private, not-for-profit; midsize suburb||Bachelor of Arts in Nutrition||$45,264 per year*|
|Concordia College||4-year, private, not-for-profit; midsize suburb||Bachelor of Arts in Food, Nutrition and Dietetics||$39,878 per year*|
|Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College||2-year, public; fringe town||Associate of Science in Nutrition||$5,319 per year*|
|Inver Hills Community College||2-year, public; large suburb||Nutrition Course||$5,332 per year*|
|Mayo Graduate School||4-year, private, not-for-profit; midsize city||Continuing education courses in nutrition||$12,223 per year (graduate tuition and fees)*|
|Minnesota State College - Southeast Technical||2-year, public; distant town|| Nutrition Course,
Health, Safety and Nutrition Course
|$5,628 per year*|
|Minnesota West Community and Technical College||2-year, public; remote town|| Nutrition Course,
Associate of Science in Food Science
|$5,692 in-state; $10,838 out-of-state*|
|Normandale Community College||2-year, public; small city|| Nutrition & Diet Courses,
Associate of Applied Science in Dietetic Technology
|$5,791 per year*|
|St. Catherine's University||4-year, private, not-for-profit; large city|| Bachelor of Arts in Nutrition: Science,
Bachelor of Science in Nutrition: Science
|$39,554 per year*|
|University of Minnesota - Twin Cities||4-year, public; large city|| Bachelor of Science in Food Science,
Bachelor of Science in Nutrition,
Master of Science in Food Science,
Master of Science in Nutrition,
Doctor of Philosophy in Food Science,
Doctor of Philosophy in Nutrition
| $14,760 in-state; $30,438 out-of-state (undergraduate)*
$18,583 in-state; $27,931 out-of-state (graduate)*
Source: *NCES College Navigator