So long, D&D Digital! A new era of applying for a dietetic internship is upon us, and the Be Well Solutions Dietetic Internship Program is ready for it. 

If you weren’t already aware, the Spring 2024 match was the very last time dietetic internship programs and applicants were to use the D&D Digital computer matching platform. Although this approach provided an efficient method for pairing applicants with a dietetic internship program, this process has been revolutionized to give applicants more say in their chosen program.

So, why did the dietetic internship match go away?

Over the years, a significant decrease in positions filled through the match proved the match to not be the most effective means of pairing nutrition students with a dietetic internship program. According to ACEND, 70% of positions in 2019 were filled through the match process, but only 38% were filled through the match in 2023 (ACEND Town Hall Meeting, February 2024). Other concerns with the match process include complicated rules and student confusion, amongst other reasons (ACEND Town Hall Meeting, February 2024).

To address these issues, a student-focused task force assembled to find a new solution for pairing applicants with internships that focused on simplifying and streamlining pathways, limiting costs, minimizing workload, and addressing the stress and anxiety around match as well as making sure it’s fair to applicants and programs (ACEND Townhall Meeting, February 2024).

What is the new dietetic internship application process going to be like?

While the matching process itself is going away, DICAS will remain. Think of the new process like you’re applying to college in that you will complete a standardized application (DICAS) and potentially receive multiple offers of admission. By Fall 2025, all dietetic internship programs must participate in DICAS, unless a student is applying to a dietetic internship within the same institution where they are currently enrolled. With this in mind, all applicants should confirm application requirements with each program they intend to apply to in case there are variations in deadlines and requirements.

Here are the basics:

  • Applicants for Spring and Fall can access DICAS as early as August 5th each year to begin submitting their applications. Please remember that you do not need to wait until August 5th to begin working on your applications, especially if you are applying for the Fall application cycle. 
  • Confused as to when to apply for a dietetic internship? Applicants should confirm the application due dates for each program, as these may vary (see the BWS DI important dates here). 
  • Applications will be submitted in DICAS by the program’s designated due date, which means all applicants will no longer be notified on one day. (check out what to include in your DICAS application here). 
  • Applicants will be notified of an offer by November 1st (Fall) or March 1st (Spring). This deadline is the absolute last day programs have to notify applicants of a decision so you may likely receive a status on your application prior to this date. 
  • Applicants must then notify programs of their acceptance or decline of the offer by November 15th (Fall) or March 15th (Spring).
  • Thereafter, applicants who did not receive an offer may apply to programs with available spots on a rolling admissions basis.

To recap, some of the benefits for students/applicants include:

  1. The power to choose. Now, applicants may receive multiple offers and be able to compare programs side by side to determine which is the best dietetic internship program for them.
  2. Less stress. Applicants no longer have to wait for one match day to find out if they were admitted to a dietetic internship program. Programs can offer spots up until the notification deadline.
  3. Save money. Every little bit matters, and now applicants do not need to pay for the computer matching platform, D&D Digital. 

Change can be scary, but the new process truly was created to support students and to be fairer for all involved. So, roll up your sleeves, dive in, and get ready to make your mark in the world of nutrition. Your RD dreams are closer than you think!

Ready to learn how to apply to BWS DI? Check out our page on how to apply, plus review the important dates for your intended application cycle.