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Is it really worth it to get a masters or doctorate if I want to be a dietitian?

I know I want to be a registered dietitian but how much school should I really go through? I know I need at least a bachelors but I have always dreamed of going all the way to a doctorate. I just don't know if my future salary will make it worth while. #college #career #healthcare #dietitian #diet-and-exercise #financial-planning

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Monique’s Answer

Hi Olivia,


Based on the direction of the profession at this time, I would advise going at least, for the masters. Not only does it make you more desirable but it also increases your pay. In fact, beginning in the year 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration will require a masters degree for registration eligibility. This means that anyone interested in taking the exam to become a credentialed dietitian will need to have a masters degree in order to take the exam. As a Registered Dietitian with a masters in nutrition, I can tell you that it has made me a desirable candidate for job positions; Not only do my colleagues look to me for trusted expertise but my clients also feel confident in my knowledge and ability to guide them professionally. I hope this helps! Good luck.

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Hillary’s Answer

As a Registered Dietitian that has my M.S in Food and Nutritional Science, I can not say that my Master's degree has helped me make more money or advancements in my career. It looks great on my resume though and has been useful recently when I was looking for a new job. I don't want to discourage you from getting your Master's however, as the Commission of Dietetic Registration will be requiring dietitians to have Master's degrees soon. I'm really glad that I did go those extra 2.5 years. Unless you want to go into teaching and/or research, I personally wouldn't bother to get your Doctorate. The student debt is just not worth it. I do thoroughly enjoy what I do! I am currently a Renal Dietitian in an outpatient dialysis center after working in hospitals for 10 years. During COVID, working at a hospital was getting pretty stressful as we were all stretched so thin. My current position is a refreshing change! I'm happy to continue to grow in my career and to practice another aspect of dietetics that I have not yet tried. Even after being an RD for 18 years, this new job is challenging in a whole new way that practicing clinical nutrition in a hospital setting was. Good luck!
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