In their major coursework students learn to critically evaluate food and nutrition information and research while they study.
- how the body uses and processes nutrients at the cellular and whole body levels.
- the role of food and nutrition throughout the life cycle for optimal health and wellness.
- how diet and lifestyle choices can help prevent and manage a variety of diseases.
- the principles of food science and food safety.
- the role of community and public health nutrition programs and public policy in the wellbeing of our communities.
- the problems of hunger and food insecurity in our world today.
- the principles of management and business needed for delivering food and nutrition programs and services.
- the roles of nutrition professionals in a variety of practice settings.
Many of the major courses develop communications skills by providing students with opportunities to give oral presentations, teach classes, create and present scientific posters, write research papers, learn and practice counseling skills, and develop nutrition education materials as well as personal portfolios. Students also have opportunities for internships, community service, and independent study.
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The Food and Nutritional Science Major
The Department of Family and Consumer Sciences offers three emphases in the Food and Nutritional Sciences major leading to a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) Degree.
The Dietetics emphasis prepares students for application to a supervised dietetics internship program and for a career as a Registered Dietitian. Additional courses in accounting, business, foodservice management, counseling and medical nutrition therapy are a part of this degree.
The general Food and Nutritional Sciences emphasis provides students with a broad background in food and nutrition.
The Nutrition in Sports and Exercise emphasis stresses the role of food and nutrition for optimal physical performance and for health and wellness. Courses in exercise physiology, exercise science, medical nutrition therapy, and nutrition in sports and exercise are required.
Visit the Undergraduate Catalog for a complete list of degree requirements in FCS Nutritional Sciences. You can also visit the catalog for the minor degree in Food and Nutritional Sciences.
Careers in Food and Nutrition
The dynamic and diverse field of food and nutrition leads to a variety of career opportunities. Those who progress in the field of dietetics and become Registered Dietitians provide practical food, nutrition and/or management expertise in many settings including hospitals, out-patient clinics, long-term care facilities, medical offices, research centers, schools, sports clubs, fitness centers, and private practice. Registered dietitians also manage food service operations in restaurant, health care, school, and industry settings. Others may work in sales or develop careers as authors or editors of food and nutrition-related print media. Graduates of the SPU Food and Nutrition program have many interesting and fulfilling jobs. Recent employers of our graduates include:
- Children's Regional Hospital and Medical Center
- Lifelong AIDS Alliance
- Tacoma General Hospital
- Swedish Hospital and Medical Center
- Harborview Medical Center
- Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
- DaVita Dialysis Center
- Northwest Kidney Center
- Valley Medical Center
- Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
- The City of Seattle Child Nutrition Program
- Highline School District
- Food Sense
- The YMCA
- Publicis Culinary & Nutrition Center
For those interested in further study, the B.S. degree in Food and Nutritional Sciences prepares you for graduate work in public health, food science, nutrition science, clinical nutrition, sports nutrition, culinary arts or other health or food-related fields. Other possibilities include advanced studies in marketing, business education, counseling, or psychology.
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