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Food, Nutrition & Related Services Major

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Food, Nutrition & Related Services

3,522 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
973 Master's Degrees Annually
#96 in Popularity
$36,190 Median Salary

The following table lists how many food, nutrition and related services graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.

Education Level Number of Grads
Bachelor’s Degree 3,522
Master’s Degree 973
Basic Certificate 346
Associate’s Degree 276
Graduate Certificate 90
Undergraduate Certificate 65
Doctor’s Degree 46

O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to nutrition and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.

Knowledge Areas for Nutrition Majors

This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:

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  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

Skills for Nutrition Majors

A major in nutrition prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:

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  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Abilities for Nutrition Majors

As you progress with your nutrition degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:

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  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.

Below is a list of occupations associated with nutrition:

Job Title Job Growth Rate Median Salary
Cooks, Institution and Cafeteria 7.7% $26,860
Dietetic Technicians 9.3% $27,140
Dietitians and Nutritionists 14.6% $60,370
First-Line Supervisors of Food Preparation and Serving Workers 9.3% $32,450
Food Service Managers 9.0% $54,240
Home Economics Professors 8.6% $71,380

3,522 Bachelor's Degrees Annually
78% Percent Women
34% Percent Racial-Ethnic Minorities*
This is a less frequently chosen undergraduate major. Only 3,522 students graduated with a bachelor’s degree in food, nutrition and related services in 2019, making it rank #96 in popularity. The major attracts more women than men. About 78% of the recent graduates in this field are female.

Racial-Ethnic Diversity

At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of nutrition majors is as follows:

Racial-Ethnic Diversity of Nutrition Students with Bachelor's Degrees
Race/Ethnicity Number of Grads
Asian 235
Black or African American 303
Hispanic or Latino 453
White 2,132
International Students 123
Other Races/Ethnicities 276

Geographic Diversity

Students from other countries are interested in Nutrition, too. About 3.5% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:

  • China
  • South Korea
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Malaysia
  • Canada

Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary

Data from the U.S. Department of Education shows that food, nutrition and related services students who graduated in 2015-2017 with a bachelor’s degree made a median starting salary of $30,150 per year. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $27,225 (25th percentile) and $31,550 (75th percentile).

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One thing to note here is that not all of these people may be working in careers related to nutrition.

Salaries According to BLS

Average salaries range from $30,130 to $61,210 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to nutrition. This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.

To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.

Median Salary for a Food, Nutrition & Related Services Major  ( 30130 to 61210 )
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250K
Median Salary for a High School Graduate  ( 30000 to 57900 )
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250K
Median Salary for a Bachelor's Degree Holder  ( 45600 to 99000 )
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250K
Median Salary for an Advanced Degree Holder  ( 55600 to 125400 )
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250K

Some careers associated with nutrition require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.

How much schooling do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to nutrition have obtained the following education levels.

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Education Level Percentage of Workers
Less than a High School Diploma 12.3%
High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED) 40.4%
Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production) 5.8%
Some College Courses 5.6%
Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree) 1.7%
Bachelor’s Degree 6.7%
Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master. 6.0%
Master’s Degree 10.3%
Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level. 0.5%
First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession. 0.1%
Doctoral Degree 11.1%
Post-Doctoral Training 0.2%

In the 2018-2019 academic year, 254 schools offered some type of food, nutrition and related services program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.

Degree Level Colleges Offering Programs Colleges Offering Online Classes
Certificate (Less Than 1 Year) 68 6
Certificate (1-2 years) 21 3
Certificate (2-4 Years) 0 0
Associate’s Degree 71 1
Bachelor’s Degree 20 4
Post-Baccalaureate 68 6
Master’s Degree 83 25
Post-Master’s 3 0
Doctor’s Degree (Research) 20 1
Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice) 0 0
Doctor’s Degree (Other) 0 0

The median salary for a nutrition grad is $36,190 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.

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You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to nutrition.

Major Number of Grads
Human Development & Family Studies 43,687
General Family & Consumer Sciences 3,753
Textile & Apparel Studies 3,476
Family & Consumer Economics 1,593
Housing 785
Human Sciences Business Services 477
Family, Consumer & Human Sciences (Other) 192
Work & Family Studies 0

References

*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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