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Dietetic Internship Program

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VA Caribbean Healthcare System (San Juan)

We appreciate your interest in the VA Caribbean Healthcare System (VACHS) Dietetic Internship Program (DIP). We hope you can find all the information on our webpage, and if you still need to, we would be honored to assist you by phone, email, or in person.

The VACHS-DIP is in San Juan, Puerto Rico. It was established in 1950 and has graduated more than 700 nutritionists/dietitians from Puerto Rico and the United States. Our program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). The VACHS serves veterans in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Our population mainly consists of Hispanic male adults, but we are witnessing a growing community of women. We also offer supervised practice experiences in pediatrics and the community. Our institution is dedicated to excellence, and our internship closely follows the VACHS core values of integrity, commitment, advocacy, respect, and excellence.

*New- The VACHS now offers two program tracks for individuals interested in pursuing a career in dietetics. The first option is the Dietetic Internship Program-Only Track, which is designed for students who already have a Verification Statement from a Didactic Program in Dietetics (DPD) and for applicants who either already have a Master's degree or are in the last steps of finishing it, or who are enrolled in a Master's degree and have already completed most of the courses and credits.

The second option is the Dietetic Internship and Master's Degree Track (DI/Master Program Track), which is intended for those who do not have a master's degree yet but have a Verification Statement from a DPD. We have partnered with Cedar Crest College to offer the DI/Master Program Track, which provides five diverse master's programs through distance learning. Please visit our Program Information page to learn more about our program tracks.

The supervised practice portion of both programs is completed at our main facility, the VACHS-DIP, which provides experience primarily in clinical nutrition. However, we also offer experiences in other traditional areas, such as food service system management and community nutrition, and non-traditional settings, such as social media and communication and sports nutrition. The rotations and supervised practice experiences are completed at our main medical center in San Juan. We also have opportunities to rotate in our outpatient clinics in Arecibo, Ceiba, Mayaguez, and Ponce for some rotations.

Virtual Open Houses for Spring 2025 Cycle (through Microsoft Teams):

  1. Friday October 4, 2024
  2. Wednesday November 20, 2024

VA San Juan Facility

Check out this video where Dietetic Interns share their experience in the Dietetic Internship Program.

Comments from VA San Juan Graduates 

"The internship provides a positive and safe environment to express any concerns. It promotes the importance of taking care of your mental state, provides many resources that help you prepare more every day and improve your performance and promotes respect and empathy. Prepare you in all the important aspects to be an excellent professional. Its structure is very organized, which is very helpful for the interns". DIP Graduate 2024

"I believe that this internship has some of the best personnel from which I was able to learn from. I believe the logistics and resources were always available and helped us in our development." DIP Graduate 2024

"This program offers a great chance for networking with preceptors, following a patient's case for an extended period of time to observe significant outcomes, and conducting patient interviews in English. The rotations are individual, which provides independent training, and there are regular training sessions for personal and professional development." DIP Graduate 2023

"Provides experiences in all clinical, administrative, and community settings; most preceptors are good teachers; interns have many experiences in connecting the clinical area with the food service area; being in one system provides the opportunity to adapt when changing clinical rotations rapidly. We had many resources to access helpful information for our practice and educational material for patients." DIP Graduate 2023