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Dietetic Internship (NODIP)

The Northern Ontario Dietetic Internship Program (NODIP) is administered by the Northern Ontario School of Medicine (NOSM), in collaboration with multiple preceptors, communities, and facilities throughout Northern Ontario. NODIP is nationally accredited and thus has been designed to develop the competencies required of an entry-level dietitian.

NOSM’s social accountability mandate and a commitment to community engaged and distributed learning is the foundation of NODIP.  

NOSM’s mission is to improve the health of Northern Ontarians by being socially accountable in our education and research programs and by advocating for health equity.  It is the intention of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine to maximize the recruitment of students who have lived in Northern Ontario and/or students who have a strong interest in and aptitude for practicing in Northern urban, rural, and remote communities. We are also committed to recruiting Indigenous, Francophone, and Franco-Ontarian students.

Standing Tall: NODIP@NOSM

Since 2007, the Northern Ontario Dietetic Internship Program (NODIP) has demonstrated a commitment to improving the health of Northern communities. Graduates are trained by dedicated preceptors and committed organizations. Upon completion of their program, NODIP graduates work in diverse practice settings, serving their communities in different ways. To learn more about NODIP, view the video Standing Tall: NODIP@NOSM, created recently by Dr. Hoi Cheu, Professor of English and Film Studies at Laurentian University.

Achievement Report

Since 2007, NOSM has offered the Northern Ontario Dietetic Internship Program, a 46-week internship that teaches dietetic interns the skills and knowledge they need for rural and Northern practice. In July of 2017, NODIP celebrated the tenth graduation of NODIP interns. Here are some of the many successes the program and its faculty, learners, and graduates have garnered over the years.

NODIP Achievement Report

About the Program

NODIP provides practical experience for students to obtain the Integrated Competencies for Dietetic Education and Practice. The internship is a comprehensive 46-week program in which students are exposed to nutrition care, population and public health, and management roles in dietetics.

NODIP offers a wide range of challenging learning experiences in a variety of practice settings including:

  • Regional Hospitals
  • Family Health Teams
  • Public Health Units
  • Community Health Centres
  • Long-Term Care Facilities
  • Small Rural Hospitals
  • Aboriginal Communities
  • Indigenous Communities

This internship will help you develop the unique skills required to meet the growing demand for health professionals in Northern and rural communities.

Up to 12 successful applicants will be selected annually for this 46-week program which begins in early September. Interns will live and practice in one of three primary sites: Thunder Bay, Sault Ste. Marie, and Sudbury.

Applications for the 2020/21 NODIP will be submitted directly to NOSM.  Please refer to Application & Selection Process for more details.

Program Outline

Orientation /Professional Development: 2 weeks
Food Service and Management: 7 weeks
Clinical Nutrition Care: 18 weeks
Population and Public Health: 10 weeks
Practice-Based Project: 4 weeks
Staff Relief: 3 weeks
Vacation: 2 weeks
Total (including vacation): 46 weeks

A minimum four to six-week rural placement is required for this program. NOSM housing is provided for placements outside of the intern’s primary site.

Rotation Examples

Rotations/placements are available for each component of the program. Below are examples; exact placements cannot be guaranteed and may change year to year.

Food Service and Management

  • Food service operations in a  hospital or long term care facility
  • Human resources management
  • Working in a unionized environment
  • Project management

Outpatients

  • Regional bariatric assessment centres
  • Cancer centres
  • Cardiac rehabilitation
  • Diabetes programs
  • Family health teams

Inpatient Clinical

  • Medicine
  • Rehabilitation
  • Long-term care
  • Oncology
  • Surgery
  • Renal Care
  • Critical care
  • Pediatrics

Population and Public Health

  • Public health units
  • Aboriginal Health Access Centres
  • Indigenous Services Canada, First Nations and Inuit Health Branch
  • Family health teams
  • Community health centres

Practice Based Projects

Topics are submitted annually by RD preceptors from the various NODIP placement sites. Two dietetic interns are paired and then assigned to a project, which is completed over the internship year, including four scheduled research weeks.

2019-2020 Projects

  • An impact evaluation: Bringing Active Living and Nutrition into your Childhood Everyday (BALANCE) Program and nutrition education on parental efficacy and child health behaviour change
  • Improving nutrient density of food offerings in long-term care
  • Barriers and Facilitators to using the Subjective Global Assessment Tool by Clinical Dietitians
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder: A PEN® Pathway Update
  • The Effectiveness of Oral Nutritional Supplementation on Serum Albumin and SGA Scores in Patients Undergoing Hemodialysis at Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre
  • The Nutrition Education Needs of Older Adults in Rural Northern Ontario

Examples of poster presentations include:

Therapeutic Christmas hampers: Impact on nutrition knowledge, attitudes and behaviour with hemodialysis patients (Northern Health Research Conference 2017, Thunder Bay Regional Hospital Research Day 2018)

Knowledge and attitudes of NOSM medical students on the importance of a supportive food environment and its relationship to healthy eating (Dietitians of Canada National Conference 2017)

Nutrition and Autism Spectrum Disorder: A needs assessment and environmental scan to inform nutrition curriculum and training for non-medical diagnostic and therapeutic service providers in Northern Ontario (Dietitians of Canada National Conference 2018, Northern Health Research Conference 2018)

Student Awards/Bursaries and NODIP Recipients

Dietitians of Canada Morgan Award

For achievements of research projects by dietetic interns or practicum students.

Kira Schan (National Medal recipient) (NODIP Class 2008-09)

Jill Ingribelli (Quebec and Northeast Ontario Region) (NODIP Class 2015-16)

 

Dietitians of Canada Graduate Student Award

Recognizes outstanding academic performance in master’s and PhD programs.

Julie Stachiw (NODIP Class of 2011-12)

 

Dietitians of Canada Judy Van Tilburg Dietetic Intern Bursary

Professional development and networking opportunity at the National Conference.

Julia Freeman (NODIP Class 2011-12)

Brianne Ozimok (NODIP Class 2014-15)

NODIP and NOSM Medical Students

One of NOSM’s Academic Principles is interprofessionalism where learners in all of NOSM’s programs learn with, from and about each other as developing and practicing health care professionals.

In 2017-18, NODIP piloted Culinary Medicine Labs which blends the art of food and cooking with the science of medicine. Through the support of RD facilitators and dietetic interns the pilot was a success.  It has been expanded on both NOSM campuses with efforts to formally integrate this curriculum into the UME Program.

To our knowledge, NODIP is the first Canadian internship program to include dietetic interns in the CML model of medical education training.  Hear more about the benefits from our interns and medical students (see video below).

CML 2020-2021 Recipe Collection

September 2020  (CML 101, Introduction)

October 2020  (CML 102, Gastrointestinal Conditions)

November 2020 (CML 106, Diabetes)

December 2020  (CML 103, Cardiovascular Health)

January 2021 (CML107, Reproductive Health)

Professional Development and NODIP Resources

NODIP’s professional development includes an annual calendar of workshops on topics including research and data analysis, program evaluation, health literacy and clear language, pediatrics, renal disease, food allergies, the International Dietetics and Nutrition Terminology and Nutrition Care Process. There may also opportunities to attend events and workshops offered during some rotations and/or by organizations such as Dietitians of Canada.

NODIP SharePoint Site

As a distributed learning program, the learning SharePoint site is the primary tool for communication. The site includes:

  • All placement information, intern schedules and materials online.
  • Common performance objectives and evaluation forms.
  • A Resource Centre of workshop materials, additional resources and references.

Shown below: NODIP’s professional development opportunities include an annual calendar of workshops on topics including a Growth Assessment Workshop.

Northern Ontario Dietetic Internship Program student measuring a baby's head circumference.