Career Opportunities with a Master's Degree in Nutrition Education

Become a Health Advocate Within Your Community

Many students have gone ahead and taken nutrition to the next level, and that would mean taking and doing their own research or their own internship or experience in their own communities. I've had several students who have gone into Arlington, Virginia, where I have done some work before and start to look at the competitive food environment, start to work with parent groups, to be able to work with PTAs within the school system, to set nutrition education policies. And this type of experiential learning, this type of research that students have gone on to do, many have been able to then sell that knowledge for their job for their next career. And that's what's really exciting about the work that we do here. It makes an impact in people's lives, but it also makes an impact on the student’s life. Because they can talk first hand to a future employer about the type of approach they're going to use to providing sound nutrition education to individuals into communities, as well as to society.

The need for nutrition education is surging, and the nationwide campaign for healthy nutrition and better lifestyle choices is picking up momentum. Whether it's addressing chronic illness, the obesity epidemic, or the needs of the ever-increasing aging population, highly-credentialed nutritionists are needed in a wide variety of areas. Employment of dietitians and nutritionists is expected to increase 16 percent from 2014 to 2024, much faster than average for all occupations.

Graduates who have completed our courses in nutrition education are able to claim the following skills and areas of expertise when entering the job market:

  • Knowledge of how to design nutrition education programs and advance nutrition education in various settings including schools, communities, public health departments, and the food industry
  • Familiarity and experience with nutrition research and an understanding of where to find and interpret accurate, reliable, and evidence-based nutrition information
  • An understanding of how nutritional health intersects with many other health topics such as physical activity, child development, aging, quality of life, disease prevention, and health policy
  • Understand the gender and cultural differences affecting health and nutrition and be able to reach across cultures to educate people of all backgrounds
  • The ability to use cognitive behavioral techniques to address health risk factors such as over-eating, stress, smoking, poor diet, and limited physical activity

We Know Success

Our Graduation Census shows that 93 percent of our master's graduates in the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) were employed within six months of graduation. That includes graduate programs in the Department of Health Studies (DHS), which is part of CAS. Following is a sampling of where some of our former graduates from DHS have secured employment:

  • NextJump
  • Fairfax County Public Schools
  • A Wider Circle
  • Sodexo
  • AARP
  • LiveHealthier
  • Whole Foods

Choose Your Field of Interest

With an online Master of Science in Nutrition Education, you have the advanced credentials needed to obtain a position in a variety of fields, including:

Read a transcript of our recent webinar with Dr. Anastasia Snelling which goes into details on the career paths with a Master’s in Nutrition Education.

Nutrition Career Resources

Faculty, students, and alumni in the online Master’s in Nutrition Education are dedicated to helping you reach your career goals. Resources available include:

  • Mentorship Program: Halfway through your graduate program, you will be matched with a faculty mentor who will work with you on resume development, job search navigation, and making connections based on location and professional interests.
  • Student Webinars: Webinars are hosted every semester on popular topics and trends such as Health Literacy in the Federal Government Nutrition Policy, Food Access and Nutrition Education Insights, and Creating and Running an Online Business and Food and Nutrition Writing
  • Networking Events: Events are available to students local or willing to travel to meet peers, faculty, and industry experts.
  • Social Media: Students, alumni, and faculty share job opportunities postings on dedicated Facebook and LinkedIn pages.
  • Career Services: American University’s career center also offers valuable online resources to students and alumni including job search resources, internship resources, and career counseling. Graduated and current students can also network online and upload their resumes directly to prospective employers by making an account at AU Career Web, our online career search tool.

Nutrition Education In Action

Keep up with the latest happenings, news, and accomplishments of our program faculty here.

Dr. Anastasia Snelling on the Healthy Schools Act
Dr. Anastasia Snelling and her research team discuss the impact of the Health Schools Act, five years later.

Health Trends from American University
Top research in the Department of Health Studies focuses on nutrition trends that can help people, organizations, and communities change lifestyle behaviors to move toward a state of improved health.

Dr. Anastasia Snelling’s Study on Pairing Fruit and Vegetables in Elementary School Cafeterias Published in the School Nutrition Association’s Journal
Department of Health Studies Program Director Dr. Anastasia Snelling, was recently published in the School Nutrition Association’s Journal of Child Nutrition and Management on her study Pairing Fruit and Vegetables to Promote Consumption in Elementary School Cafeterias.

* Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2014-15 Edition, Dietitians and Nutritionists, on the Internet at (visited September 9, 2015).

Be a driving force behind nutrition education. Click here to learn more about the online Master of Science in Nutrition Education or call 855-725-7614 to speak with an admissions adviser today.