Dietetic Internship Program

The dietetic internship, or supervised practice experience, is a critical requirement for careers in nutrition and dietetics. Cedars-Sinai Medical Center is the home of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Dietetic Internship Program (CSMC DIP) where dietetic interns complete a variety of supervised practice experiences (rotations) within a leading and nationally recognized healthcare facility. Cedars-Sinai is committed to training medical professionals of tomorrow while setting new standards for quality and innovation in patient care. Since the inception of the CSMC DIP, we have accepted DPD graduates with diverse backgrounds. Interns in our program have represented a variety of ethnicities.

CSMC DIP is 10 months, 1104 total hours of supervised practice (16 hours is in alternate practice experience and 1088 hours is in professional work settings) and designed to prepare interns for a career in nutrition and dietetics. Cedars-Sinai DIP’s concentration is clinical nutrition. There is a strong focus on leadership and diversity as well as food service management, community nutrition and research MNT. Upon completing the program, graduates are eligible to sit for the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) national credentialing examination, the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

About the Program


The mission of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Dietetic Internship Program is to provide a learning environment that prepares innovative, well-rounded, entry-level registered dietitian nutritionists to become future leaders in the nutrition and dietetics profession. Founded on the Judaic tradition, Cedars-Sinai strives to provide quality, compassionate care to the patients and the community it serves.

The Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Dietetic Internship Program: 

  • Fosters an educational foundation with the provision of high-quality nutrition care for all patients
  • Encourages the acknowledgement of diversity and individuality in our patients, staff and community
  • Models and teaches integrity with high ethical standards
  • Cultivates registered dietitian nutritionists to think critically, share innovative ideas and be inquisitive
  • Increases diversity in the nutrition and dietetics profession
  • Provides a supportive learning environment that fosters a team approach in clinical nutrition, food service management, research and community nutrition

Program Overview

The program begins in August and ends in May. There is a two-week mandatory orientation for interns starting at the end of August. Interns attend mandatory class days each Monday as part of the Greater Los Angeles Dietetic Internship Consortium (GLADIC). Scheduled supervised practice rotations are held Tuesday through Friday.

The program currently admits six interns per year.

Program Goals and Objectives

Goal #1: Program graduates are competent for entry-level practice as registered dietitian nutritionists.


  1. At least 80% of interns complete program requirements within 15 months or 150% of planned program length.
  2. At least 80% of program graduates take the Commission on Dietetic Registration credentialing examination for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of graduation.
  3. The program’s one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within one year of first attempt) on the Commission on Dietetic Registration credentialing examination for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80%.
  4. At least 80% of program graduates self-rate as prepared for their first position as a registered dietitian nutritionist.
  5. At least 80% of employers of program graduates report that graduate’s knowledge and competency are satisfactory for current position.
  6. At least 80% of graduates and 80% of employers rate the program graduate’s critical thinking skills as satisfactory for their scope of practice.
  7. At least 80% of employers of program graduates rate graduates’ communication skills as effective.

Goal #2: Program graduates assume positions in a variety of career opportunities and are involved in activities and demonstrate leadership ability within the profession of nutrition and dietetics.


  1. Of graduates who seek employment at least 80% are employed in nutrition and dietetics-related fields within 12 months of graduation.
  2. At least 80% of graduates and 80% of employers of program graduates report that graduates find innovative solutions to problems and share ideas with others.
  3. At least 80% of graduates and 80% of employers report that program graduates lead/assume responsibility for activities/others outside of routine duties.

Outcome data is available upon request.

Accreditation Status

Cedars-Sinai’s Dietetic Internship Program status is Candidacy for Accreditation by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics, or ACEND, of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, 120 S. Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995,, 800-877-1600 ext. 5400. Candidacy for accreditation is the interim status for new programs prior to review for full accreditation. It confers all the rights and privileges to graduates upon successful completion of the program, including eligibility to take the CDR credentialing examination, the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

Supervised Practice Rotations

Cedars-Sinai dietetic interns complete a variety of supervised practice rotations on campus within the Department of Food and Nutrition Services, Cedars-Sinai Cancer and the Center for Integrative Research in Cancer and Lifestyle.

The clinical nutrition rotation is made up of 12 cumulative weeks in inpatient adult clinical nutrition, plus two weeks of inpatient adult clinical staff relief, three weeks in Pediatrics/NICU, and two weeks in an outpatient clinic at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. During the 12 weeks of inpatient adult clinical nutrition, interns are assigned to rotations that cover a variety of medical and surgical conditions. They perform medical nutrition therapy by utilizing the Nutrition Care Process under the supervision of preceptors who guide and mentor them for assigned patients. Medical conditions include but are not limited to: General Medical/Surgical, Cardiology/Cardiothoracic Surgery, Diabetes, GI/GI Surgery, Neuro/Neurosurgery, Oncology, Telemetry, Transplant, Wounds/Pressure Injuries, Hepatic, Renal, Geriatric, Pulmonary, Trauma and Critical Care. Three clinical projects are completed during the clinical rotation, including a comprehensive patient case study presentation and research paper, a nutrition product comparison report and presentation, and an intern-led Journal Club.

Staff Relief Rotation

After completion of the 12 weeks in inpatient adult clinical nutrition, interns complete two weeks of adult clinical staff relief. In this rotation, they practice working independently by implementing all they learned during their clinical rotation. Interns are assigned a medical-surgical floor, performing medical nutrition therapy care for patients via use of the Nutrition Care Process. Preceptors oversee and co-sign all intern notes. In addition, interns attend interdisciplinary care rounds as they gain simulated experience of working as an entry-level clinical dietitian.

Pediatrics/NICU Rotation

In this three-week-long specialty rotation, interns spend one week in Inpatient Pediatrics, one week in Outpatient Pediatrics and one week in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. They perform medical nutrition therapy by utilizing the Nutrition Care Process under the supervision of preceptors who guide and mentor them for assigned patients with a variety of medical conditions. This rotation focuses on the neonatal, pediatric (child and adolescent) and maternity patient populations.

Outpatient Rotation

During the two-week-long outpatient rotation, interns spend two weeks in an outpatient clinic setting at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. They are given a choice of either the Minimally Invasive Surgery (MIS) Bariatric Clinic or the Comprehensive Transplant Center (CTC) clinics. In the MIS clinic, interns work alongside the bariatric dietitian preceptor, counseling preoperative and postoperative bariatric patients. In the CTC clinics, interns work alongside the transplant dietitian preceptor in pre- and post-kidney and liver transplant, hepatology and fatty liver clinics. They attend Selection Committee Meetings with the interdisciplinary team for recipient selection of kidney and liver transplants.

The research rotation is completed at the Cedars-Sinai Center for Integrated Research in Cancer and Lifestyle (CIRCL). It includes two weeks of remote learning led by a research dietitian with Cedars-Sinai Cancer. The rotation includes daily meetings and lectures with the research dietitian, self-reflective written assignments, Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) training, and a cumulative research project proposal and presentation. Depending on the open trials, students will be able to have an active role in shadowing the research RD providing the intervention and help with data entry.

Interns are scheduled for seven weeks in the food service management rotation. The rotation covers the following areas: patient food service, food and materials handling, production, kosher kitchen, human resources, financial management, business administration and clinical nutrition management. Interns spend time with managers, diet technicians, supervisors, dietitians and an executive chef in the Food Service Department. A variety of projects and presentations are conducted on topics such as staff in-servicing, quality improvement, plate waste, inventory, and food safety and sanitation, in addition to self-reflective projects covering topics such as mentoring, professional development and skills assessment.

The community rotation is split into two sub-rotations for a total of six weeks. Interns complete four weeks with Cedars-Sinai Cancer, rotating at the main campus and off-site Cedars-Sinai Oncology Enterprise locations with multiple oncology dietitians. The rotation includes patient assignments, evidence-based research and article reviews, projects and presentations to both the cancer center staff and community groups. Interns participate in nutrition education material development, wellness and lifestyle events/activities, and “Nutrition in Your Kitchen” classes for cancer survivors. Interns also complete two weeks with an alternate community organization.

Sample Rotation Schedule for the Dietetic Internship Calendar Year

SP Hours*


Orientation to the Dietetic Internship Program




Inpatient Clinical Nutrition Rotation




Staff Relief




Winter Vacation












Community Rotation




Research Rotation




Spring Break




Food Service Management Rotation




Exit/RD Exam Test Prep/Graduation



*Supervised Practice Hours





Preceptors oversee, mentor/guide and evaluate interns throughout the supervised practice rotations. They are responsible for completing the formal, written evaluations at the end of each rotation. Preceptors involved in the CSMC DIP include registered dietitians in clinical, food service, community and research rotations. There are also experienced and knowledgeable food service manager-preceptors, who are non-RDN, but are excellent mentors in the food service management rotation. They share their wealth of knowledge and experience in food service operations with interns. Interns also work with registered dietetic technicians in the diet office during the clinical portion of the program.

The program manager is the internship director who has responsibility and accountability for all aspects of the program. The director is assisted by an internship coordinator. The coordinator is a lead, senior-level clinical dietitian who oversees the daily activities of the program including intern schedules, evaluations, problem-solving and interacting frequently with interns and preceptors.

Completing the Program

Interns are required to complete the internship in full and meet the competencies, supervised practice hours, assignments and expectations set forth by the internship. The intern is expected to complete all requirements within 10 months. Interns must meet competencies at or above 70% (or >3.5 on a 5.0 rating scale) on all competencies, assignments, projects and case studies. Interns receive continuous and regular feedback from preceptors during rotations and interns receive a written evaluation for all rotations and major projects. Interns receive a formal, written midpoint evaluation for clinical nutrition and food service management due to the length of these rotations. If an intern fails to complete assignments or supervised practice hours at the expected level of performance, the assignments or hours must be made up prior to graduation.

If an intern fails to achieve expectations during the program, remedial work and additional supervised practice hours and/or a tutor may be assigned to support the learning and skill development process. If the intern fails to show improvement following additional supervised practice hours and assignments, tutoring, counseling sessions and other interventions, the intern may be placed on a 30-day probation. The intern may risk dismissal from the program without tuition reimbursement. Written documentation of all interventions, agreements and outcomes will be completed and shared with the intern by the internship director in this situation. Interns must meet program requirements no later than 15 months from the start of the program. The internship director makes the final determination in situations involving dismissal from the program.

Upon successful completion of the CSMC DIP, interns receive a verification statement on the last week of the program during the exit interview. The verification statement indicates that the internship program has been completed. Interns are eligible at this time to become active members of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and sit for the CDR credentialing examination, the Registration Examination for Dietitians.

Effective Jan. 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master’s degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN). In order to be approved for registration examination eligibility with a bachelor’s degree, an individual must meet all eligibility requirements and be submitted into CDR's Registration Eligibility Processing System (REPS) before midnight Central time, Dec. 31, 2023. Visit CDR's website at for more information about this requirement. In addition, CDR requires that individuals complete coursework and supervised practice in program(s) accredited by ACEND. Graduates who successfully complete the ACEND-accredited dietetic internship program at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center are eligible to apply to take the CDR credentialing exam to become an RDN.

Dietitians are not licensed to practice nutrition in California; therefore, there are no additional costs for state licensure for nutrition professionals. In most states, graduates also must obtain licensure or certification to practice. Learn more about State Licensure—Commission on Dietetic Registration ( All U.S. states and territories with licensure and certification laws accept the RDN credential for state licensure and certification purposes.

The internship's mission is to train competent, well-rounded, entry-level registered dietitian nutritionists to ensure the viability of the dietetics profession as the recognized leaders and experts in food and nutrition.

Program Costs

The intern should have a personal financial plan and understand the full cost of the program to ensure success. The intern must plan for expenses over and above personal cost-of-living expenses such as housing, food, private vehicle costs, insurance(s) and other expenses that are the responsibility of the intern. Examples of program expenses include books, lab coats, student dietetic membership dues, conferences and other professional meetings, office materials and other materials used in completing projects, study books and study programs, and similar items. The intern is responsible for these costs.

Estimated Program Costs

  • Tuition: $12,000
  • Parking Permit: $20 one-time fee
  • Books/Software: $300-400
  • Professional Liability Insurance: $30 (approx./varies) per year
  • AND Student Member Annual Fee: $58 per year
  • Health Insurance: $200/month (approx./varies)
  • Conferences: $100 (approx./varies)
  • Living Expenses: Approx. $2500/month

Financial Aid

The Cedars-Sinai Dietetic Internship Program is a certificate program; and therefore, interns enrolled in this program are not eligible to receive federal financial aid. Interns who are able to secure deferment of student loans may request the internship director to provide documentation of your status as dietetic intern.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation and many state-affiliated dietetic associations have excellent scholarship programs available. Contact your academic adviser, the Academy Foundation and/or your state dietetic association for more information. The California Dietetic Association Foundation has scholarships available for students who attend a California college and/or university.

Interns in the CSMC DIP are not paid an educational stipend.

Program Requirements

Dietetic interns may be required to work weekends. Interns attend class day virtually, in most cases. Therefore, each intern must have a computer and internet access to attend class. Computers and internet access are available in the Department of Food and Nutrition Services in the dietetic internship office if the intern does not have a personal computer and/or access to the internet.

Eligibility and Admission Requirements

Cedars-Sinai dietetic interns are expected to be independent self-starters who are flexible, passionate about their chosen profession and willing to excel above the minimum performance standards. The internship program expects to cultivate confident leaders who are excellent communicators and respectful of the needs and desires of others.


To be considered, the applicant must have completed a master’s degree or higher and submit the required materials:

  • A signed verification statement from a U.S.-accredited didactic program in dietetics (DPD) that meets ACEND standards (required before the first day of the program).
  • A Foreign Dietetic Education (FDE) signed verification statement that meets ACEND standards, (required before the first day of the program), if applicable.
  • A completed DPD Course List Form indicating that the student met the ACEND minimum academic requirements.
  • An official transcript of all academic coursework completed leading to the degree, including the grade received for each course, from the university/college granting the degree.
  • Due to the high-acuity patient population and nutrition-related complexity of the internship, plus evolving evidence-based information, if coursework is older than three years, applicants must retake upper-division physiology and medical nutrition therapy and demonstrate a passing grade of “C” or higher prior to entrance into the program. An official transcript that includes the grade achieved for these courses must be submitted.

CSMC DIP does not award credit toward program requirements for previous work or other learning experiences.

Academic and Work Experience Requirements

  • Academics: Overall GPA of 3.0 or higher, with minimum passing grade of “C” or better in physiology, medical nutrition therapy and/or advanced human nutrition classes.
  • Work Experience: Work experience related to nutrition, food service or research is a benefit. We value employment that demonstrates responsibility, dependability, time management, cooperation and leadership.
  • Extracurricular Activities: We will consider involvement in activities that demonstrate an ability to problem-solve and collaborate with others.

Along with required materials listed, applicants may submit a description of their academic achievements, work experience and other applicable activities and/or experiences in the form of a personal resume.

Learn More About Our Program

To learn more about the CSMC DIP, attend one of our virtual open house sessions. Sessions will be held via Microsoft Teams.

Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2023, from 2–2:45 pm PT
Thursday, Jan. 11, 2024, from 9:30–10:15 am PT

Please RSVP to Lisa Sterling by Dec. 6, 2023, for the December open house and by Jan. 4, 2024, for the January open house.

How to Apply

The program uses the online centralized internship application system: Dietetic Internship Centralized Application Service or DICAS; available at:

You may email DICAS at: for questions or information.

When completing the application form, applicants must include the reference’s name and contact email address. The email address triggers an email message to request completion of a reference form. The form is completed online.

  • Provide only three letters of recommendation.
  • References should include one faculty member and one employer.
  • Recommendations should be current, preferably submitted to DICAS within six months of applying.

Applicants who apply to the internship using DICAS will be asked to complete a personal statement. Questions to be answered in the personal statement for CSDIP include:

  • Why do you want to enter the dietetics profession?
  • Why did you choose this internship?
  • What experiences have helped to prepare you for this program?
  • What are your short-term and long-term goals?
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses, or areas needing improvement?

Please limit your personal statement to 1,000 words.

Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended should be sent directly to DICAS.

Applicants to dietetic internships must participate in computer matching through D & D Digital Systems. There is a $65 processing charge for this service.

For more information about applying through D & D Digital Systems:

D & D Digital Systems
Suite 301
304 Main St.
Ames, IA 50010

Supplemental application materials are required and must be sent directly to the internship director. They must be submitted by Feb. 15 and include the following:

These materials should be sent to:

Tara Lovinger, MS, RD
Dietetic Internship Director
Cedars-Sinai Medical Center
Attn: Department of Food and Nutrition Services
8700 Beverly Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Use Express Mail, FedEx or another method that guarantees delivery to us within three to four days past the postmark deadline. Registered mail may take up to two weeks to arrive. Select your mailing options carefully.

Due to the number of applications that we receive we cannot confirm a receipt of applications or fees by phone or email. However, if you include a self-addressed, postage-paid postcard with your fee and authorization form, we will mail it back to you as confirmation of receipt.

The selection committee for CSDIP uses a rubric to score applications. The following items are scored:

  • Academics
  • Work Experience
  • Extracurricular Activities
  • References
  • Personal Statement Essay
  • Interview

Top-ranked applicants will be asked to participate in a personal interview in early March. The interview will take place prior to Applicant Notification Day in April.

Applicants must notify the dietetic internship director, Tara Lovinger, MS, RD, at 310-423-4515 or if they accept or reject the computer match no later than 5 p.m. (PT) on appointment day.

All of the application materials and information obtained during the application process will be held securely in the Department of Food and Nutrition Services for one year. After one year materials will be securely disposed of by a company used by Cedars-Sinai.

Cedars-Sinai is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. The Department of Food and Nutrition Services is dedicated to increasing diversity in the nutrition and dietetics profession.

Have Questions or Need Help?

Call us or send a message to the Nutrition Counseling Services team. You can also have us call you back at your convenience.

Nutrition Counseling Services
Steven Spielberg Building
8700 Beverly Blvd., Suite 290
Los Angeles, CA 90048

7 days a week, 6 am - 9 pm PT


Monday through Friday, 8 am - 5 pm PT

Fax: 310-423-0189