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Can J Diet Pract Res. 2019 Mar 1;80(1):44-46. doi: 10.3148/cjdpr-2018-034. Epub 2018 Nov 15.

Diversity and Equity in Dietetics and Undergraduate Nutrition Education in Manitoba.

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a Department of Community Health Sciences, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB.
b Department of Food and Human Nutritional Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB.
c Ongomiizwin Research, Indigenous Institute of Health and Healing, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB.
d Diabetes Integration Project, Nanaandawewigamig, First Nations Health and Social Secretariat of Manitoba, Winnipeg, MB.



The objectives of this study were (i) to describe ethnicity, tuition funding sources, and living arrangements during degree among Registered Dietitian (RD) and non-RD alumni of the University of Manitoba's undergraduate nutrition program and (ii) to describe barriers to obtaining an internship among those who did not become an RD.


A 31-item, self-administered, online questionnaire was distributed to nutrition graduates. Binary logistic regression was used to test for predictors of RD status (vs. non-RD).


Of the 195 participants who completed the survey (37% response rate), 68% identified as an RD and 31% did not. White students had 3.8 times higher odds of being an RD (P < 0.001) compared with students of an ethnic minority. Those who had received a student loan (P = 0.033) or lived with their parents during their degree (P = 0.004) also had significantly lower odds of being an RD. The most common barrier for not completing the dietetic internship by non-RDs was that the application process was too stressful.


Results from this study highlight the need for the dietetics field to address systemic barriers for students of ethnic minorities and low socioeconomic backgrounds, including barriers during the degree program and in the internship selection process.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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