The purpose of Field Experience (NUTR 600) is to provide students with an opportunity to apply theory and concepts learned in an academic environment to real-life situations in the community, foodservice, research, teaching or clinical setting. Field experience in nutrition is encouraged to enhance a student’s understanding of the role that nutrition can play in meeting individual needs as well as the needs of the community at large.
Time Commitment – Field experiences involve 4-6 hours per week for two (2) credits. This time is spent primarily at the agency or program. In addition, there will be a 1 hour weekly class on campus.
Goals and Objectives – For each experience, a protocol is developed with the field experience site preceptor to define goals, objectives and projects to be completed. There is generally some flexibility in the final goals as the needs and program objectives of agencies and healthcare facilities are constantly changing.
Student Expectations – Each field experience is different and requires a variety of skills and competencies. Prior to each field experience, the student completes a form stating reasons for desiring a field experience. Each student is required to maintain a weekly log or journal that will be brought to class. Students must also complete a final subjective paper to be submitted to the UNH coordinator. Students are also responsible for making sure their preceptors complete their midpoint and final evaluations in a timely fashion.
Student Evaluations – UNH Evaluation Forms are provided to preceptors to evaluate the student at the midpoint and end of the field experience. These evaluations are done online, but can be done on paper if your preceptor prefers.
Legal Agreements for Field Experience – Many hospitals, healthcare agencies and community programs are requiring that a legal document be developed between the agency and the University of New Hampshire. Students may be asked to allow criminal background checks, health and immunization information, drug tests, and/or immigration status.
Permission is needed to take this course and all paperwork should be submitted by the first week of December for spring semester requests and the first week of April for fall semester requests. You will need to complete appropriate paperwork before beginning any field experience.
Field Experience Sites - Descriptions for placement sites can be found here.
How do I go about signing up for a field experience?
Space in Field Experience (NUTR 600) is limited. Students sign-up for NUTR 600 AFTER an application and selection process. Unfortunately it is common for there to a greater number of students interested than available placement spots. Students are selected based upon a number of factors including class standing, scheduling needs, transportation requirements, maturity, and interest.
I don't have a car. Will I still be able to do a Field Experience?
Most Field Experience sites do require a car, but there are limited on campus sites available.
Now that I have decided on a Field Experience site, am I guaranteed a placement?
Yes and no. We will not "overbook" and offer a placement site to more students than they can handle. However, once you meet with your Field Experience preceptor, they (or you) may decide that the placement site is not a good fit or match. Please realize that if you or a preceptor decide that a site isnt a good fit, you can try another site, but most likely, they will all be filled.
I thought I wanted to enroll in Field Experience, but I changed my mind because of school/work/life, etc. What should I do?
PLEASE contact the NUTR 600 Instructor right away! We only assign students to open placement spots, so if you do not tell us you have changed your mind, you have prevented another student from having a field experience opportunity.
I have an idea for a placement site. Can I find my own Field Experience site?
Yes! We are always looking for new sites for students. The NUTR 600 Instructor will need to meet with your potential preceptor to determine if the site will meet the criteria for NUTR 600. The site will also need to have a contract with UNH. Please realize these site visits and contracts are time consuming, so setting up a placement site for Field Experience cannot be done last minute; they usually need to be done at least 2 months prior to the start of the semester.
Want to learn more about Field Experiences? Contact Professor Gretchen Arnold at firstname.lastname@example.org or (603) 862-3083.