Alaska is one of the most remote states in the country, which makes it hard for Alaskan citizens to access the healthy food that they need. In order to make sure that Alaskans can eat healthy, you might consider a career as a licensed dietitian. However, to work as a registered dietitian in Alaska, you must register and be licensed by the state. Failing to do so and attempting to work without a license can result in steep penalties.
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How to Become a Dietitian in Alaska
To be granted a license to work as a dietitian in Alaska, you must first become a registered dietitian with the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR). The qualifications to become a registered dietitian with the CDR are as follows.
- Age: You need to be over the age of 18.
- Education: A minimum of a bachelor’s degree is required from an accredited university. You also need to have completed a Didactic Program in Dietetics that has been approved by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND).
- Licensure: If you’ve already been registered with a foreign association similar to the CDR, you can provide verification and be made eligible.
- Experience: Before sitting the CDR exam, you will need 1200 hours of supervised work experience as a dietitian. This can be done during an internship after your degree, or during your degree if your program provides it.
- Citizenship: Potential registered dietitians should either be legal aliens or US citizens.
- Exam: You must sit and pass for the CDR exam.
- Character: To gain your licensure in Alaska after being registered with the CDR, you will need to be of good moral standing. If you have committed any felonies or misdemeanors, or any offenses that could be considered immoral, you will need to submit a letter from an attending physician that states you are fit to practice.
Once you have become a registered dietitian with the CDR, you can apply for your license to practice as a dietitian in Alaska.
- Licensure: You will submit your application with the Department of Commerce, Community and Economic Development. The application must include an authorization to release your records, verification of your registration with the Commission on Dietetic Registration and verification of any professional licenses that you may hold in other states. A $125 license fee and a $100 application fee is also required.
Degrees Related to Dietitians
Many degree programs hold similarities to what you would study to become a dietitian. Some examples of similar degrees include nutrition education, clinical nutrition and human biology. All of these degrees center on how the human body functions properly.
Major Cities in Alaska
- Anchorage is the state’s largest city. It holds over 40% of the population, totaling nearly 300,000 people, all of whom need proper nutrition.
- Juneau is the capital city of Alaska. It is also one of the most isolated, usually accessed by boat or plane. Its remote location makes it important that its citizens have proper eating habits.
- Fairbanks is very close to the Arctic Circle, which affects the sunlight this city gets during both the summer and the winter.
What Does a Nutritionist Do?
- Talk with patients and determine their nutrition needs.
- Work to develop meal plans for a wide variety of people, including those suffering from diseases that make eating difficult.
- Promote health eating habits in communities.
The career most similar to a dietitian is a dietetic technician. However, you could also work as a nutrition educator, a nutritionist or in some area of the food industry.
Employment Numbers in Alaska
Compared to other states, there are a small number of dietitians working in Alaska. As of 2015, the Bureau of Labor statistics estimates there are 180 working dietitians in this state.
Salary Ranges in Alaska
Your salary working as a dietitian in Alaska will depend on where you are employed. Anchorage Dietitians can make an annual wage of $70,780. In Fairbanks, the annual wage can be as much as $66,340.
Alaska Dietitian Links