Supervised Practice Rotations

  • Food and Nutrition Students in front of a display

    Nutrition Intervention and Community Education

    This 440-hour rotation is a combination of both intervention and community education experiences that occur (university, county, regional) for 11 weeks. In the intervention portion of this rotation, individual and small group nutrition counseling practice focuses on clients in the areas of wellness, perinatal care, weight management, oncology, and renal dialysis. Thus, interns participate in the continuing care of diverse clientele.

    The community education portion of this rotation involves instructional design that includes active learning strategies. Lesson presentations and subsequent evaluation will be observed and practiced. Emphasis is on enhancing oral communication skills while incorporating current instructional technology to provide food and nutrition education for a variety of target audiences. Students will teach classes to adults and children of various ages, design nutrition education displays, and develop a distance education module. Sites for the nutrition and community education rotation include:

    • IUP Community Nutrition Services
    • Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
    • Indiana Regional Medical Center
    • Indiana County Head Start, Inc.
    • the YMCA of Indiana County
    • Indiana County Community Action Program (ICCAP)
    • Indiana County Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Education
    • Indiana Community Garden

    Clinical

    The 560-hour clinical rotation is practiced at a variety of both acute and long-term care facilities. The rotation is 14 weeks long with 11 weeks in acute care and three weeks in long-term care. In the clinical rotation interns practice medical nutrition therapy and all aspects of the nutrition care process, under the supervision of registered dietitians. Interns quickly progress from performing responsibilities of support staff to working side-by-side with both generalist and specialized dietetic professionals. Interns perform staff relief at the end of the acute care portion of the rotation.

    In addition to applying medical nutrition therapy principles, interns perform a quality management project and collect information for a case study presentation. In long-term care, interns complete the standardized assessment for long-term care residents (MDS), represent residents at team care planning meetings, and work with speech pathologists. Healthcare facilities that participate in the clinical rotation include:

    • Armstrong Center for Medicine and Health
    • Butler Memorial Hospital
    • Cambria Care Center
    • Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center, a Duke LifePoint Hospital
    • Hillsdale Rehabilitation and Nursing Center
    • Penn Highlands DuBois Medical
    • Excela Health Latrobe Area Hospital
    • Excela Health Westmoreland Regional Hospital
    • Ohio Valley Hospital
    • Punxsutawney Area Hospital
    • St. Andrew’s Village
    • The Communities at Indian Haven
    • University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC) Altoona
    • UPMC Shadyside

    Management

    The management rotation includes 320 hours in a foodservice management operation. Interns are supervised by experienced foodservice managers and apply knowledge to all aspects of quantity food production, human resource management, application of HAACP plans, food safety and sanitation, budgeting, quality assurance, and evaluation. In addition, interns manage the successful “Breakfast-to-Go” delivery service on the IUP campus. In addition to IUP, sites that participate in the management rotation include:

    • Armstrong School District
    • Indiana Regional Medical Center
    • Penn Highlands DuBois Medical
    • Seton Hill Child Services Inc.
    • Torrance State Hospital
    • Butler Memorial Hospital

    Continuing Education Opportunities

    In addition to completing supervised practice hours (rotations), continuing education contributes to updating and expanding your professional knowledge base as well as expanding your network. Moreover, these group events allow interns to gain hours. Interns will attend the following:

    1. Scheduled meetings and transition days
    2. Western Pennsylvania Dietetic Education Study Group Seminars (DESSG)
    3. Pittsburgh Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (PitAND)
    4. Pennsylvania Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics (PAND)
    5. Webinars, Readings, and other opportunities are announced

    Attendance at one or more professional meetings and/or seminars for a total of 15 hours is required. All didactic hours must be met to complete the dietetic internship and receive a verification statement.