Q & A for Prospective Preceptors

Q & A

The Bowling Green State University Distance Internship Program in Nutrition and Dietetics is designed for students who are geographically bound and cannot attend a traditional internship program. The basic schedule, required courses and supervised practice experiences are the same for both the on-site program interns and the distance interns. Interns in the distance program are required to locate their own rotation sites. A preceptor Information form and site information form must be submitted to the program director for approval, prior to beginning rotations.

Interns will attend an on-site orientation in August. Fall semester, they will be enrolled in three on-line courses: Introduction to Dietetic Internship, Advanced Clinical Nutrition and Micronutrients or Macronutrients. Rotations for most interns will begin in January.

Your intern will provide all of the necessary paperwork including the Competency Form (examples can be round on the resources and forms page) and evaluation forms.  They will also provide a time sheet for you to sign documenting their hours. 

You can earn a total of eight prior-approved CPEU’s from the Commission on Dietetics Registration free of charge by completing the Online Dietetics Preceptor Training module


There are general expectations for the types of experiences interns will receive in their acute care, community or foodservice settings. Here is some examples of suggested experiences.

Community rotations  
· Plan, coordinate and provide nutrition education for identified groups of clients
· Write a newsletter article for the general public.
· Identify and apply appropriate interventions/modifications and develop outcome measures for community   needs
· Understand the funding process and legislative issues in community nutrition
· Identify available community resources – make a list of area resources
· Participate in community based food and nutrition programs, identify their missions and objectives

     • Food stamp program
     • National School Lunch Program
     • School Breakfast Program
     • Summer Foodservice Program
     • Child and Adult Care Food Program
     • Food Distribution Program (food bank)
     • WIC
     • Commodity Supplemental Food program
     • Congregate and Home-Delivered Meal Programs

Acute care rotations 
· Screen, assess and develop care plans for patients with a variety of illnesses
· Apply and interpret lab values for appropriate patient evaluation
· Create written patient/client education materials
· Identify components of quality management in the clinical setting – collect data if possible
· Measure a specific component related to outcomes and provide recommendations for improvement
· Review budget, payment and reimbursement issues for clinical nutrition services
· Select, implement, and evaluate standard enteral and parenteral nutrition regimens
· Prioritize patients for nutritional care in a clinical setting
· Attend patient care conferences or discharge planning meetings as available
· Participate in billing functions for nutrition services with clinical nutrition manager or other responsible   individual

Foodservice management  
· Participate in the collection of and evaluation of quality management data for the departments TQM plan
· Work with the foodservice manager to review planning and goal setting for the department
· Apply computer hardware, software technology to the following: purchasing, forecasting, menu   planning, inventory, productivity assessment, employee scheduling, production scheduling, nutrient   analysis and/or financial management as available
· Attend and/or participate in foodservice meetings/conferences with a member of the management team
· Attend professional organization meetings, departmental meetings, in-service education sessions
· Create appropriate education and training opportunities and material and conduct in-service training for   employees
· Identify local, state and federal regulations that influence and affect food procurement, production,   distribution and service
· Discuss menu costs in terms of food, labor, and operating/overhead costs
· Conduct a “make or buy” decision analysis
· Plan, coordinate and participate in a cafeteria/dining room promotional activity
· Participate, as allowed, in personnel activities , as the experience is available
· Discuss employee turnover, employee productivity and job satisfaction in the foodservice with a   preceptor

Precepting an intern in the distance program is essentially the same as working with interns from a program located in your area. Ultimately, interns should be able to carry out the normal tasks associated with your position, albeit at an entry level. For example, an intern should be able to calculate TPN, but not adjust the electrolytes, which is an advanced skill. The type of orientation that a new employee receives will benefit your intern. This can include reading the policy and procedure manual and completing any type of assessment typically required of new employees (HIPPA training, for example).

Interns in most internships attend some type of class (formal, if the internship is within a university structure or informal, if located within a hospital or public health facility). While interns enter the program with a great deal of book learning (and a great deal of enthusiasm), their hands on experience will vary greatly. The Bowling Green State University Internship Program in Nutrition and Dietetics will include interns who are recent graduates and interns who have put their internship on hold, often for several years. The on-line courses the interns will complete fall semester will alleviate the concerns of course recency for interns who are not recent graduates. They still have a lot to learn, even those with substantial work experience.

The powerpoint presentation Precepting 101 and the Preceptor Handbook found in the Resources and Forms section will provide more specific information and strategies for working with interns.

Competency forms have been developed for each of the rotations. The competencies required by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics are listed for each rotation along with the planned experience to meet the objective associated with the competency. The planned experiences can be modified to meet individual site needs. Most competencies appear several times throughout the course of the internship so that the intern will show increased proficiency over time.

The site affiliation agreement can be found in the  Resources and Forms section. This contract does not have to be signed until after the intern has been accepted into the program. 

Each site determines health and any other requirements for the intern with whom they will be working. Interns are typically required to complete the following: hepatitis B - 3 dose immunization series or HbsAg lab test, rubella immunity screen or proof of immunization, rubeola immunity screen or proof of immunization, varicella verified disease history or immunity screen lab test, tetanus shot within the last 10 years, 2 step TB skin test, and physical. Some sites also require a criminal background check and CPR certification. Your intern is responsible for providing this documentation.

The agreement will need to be reviewed by the Bowling Green State University Office of General Counsel to ensure that the language complies with the laws of the State of Ohio.