Master of Science in Food and Nutrition Services

Advance your career with a broad background in nutrition, food service management, and hospitality management.

Master in Science of Food and Nutrition Services chef Dru works at the stove.

About this Program

The Master of Science in Food and Nutrition Services (MSFNS) program is housed within the Department of Nutrition and Hospitality Management. Students pursuing the master's degree in food and nutrition services can choose an emphasis in Nutrition or Hospitality Management, and may also consider applying for the Coordinated Program in Dietetics track. 

The MSFNS prepares students for

  • Careers in established or emerging clinical or industrial settings
  • Doctoral studies in nutrition
  • Food service or hospitality management
  • Postsecondary teaching positions

The graduate program in food and nutrition provides students with a broad background in nutrition, food service management, and hospitality management. Students will have ample opportunity to develop the necessary analytical skills to exceed in their future careers, and will gain exposure to cutting-edge research. 

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    Program Information

    Program Type

    Master's Program

    Area of Study

    Health and Social Services


    2 years


    M.S. in Food and Nutrition Services

    Program Location



    Hospitality Management

    Required Credit Hours


    Degree Requirements and Application Process

    Find degree requirements and application procedures for the Master of Science in Food and Nutrition Services below. For more information, please visit the online catalog or download the Department of Nutrition and Hospitality Management's Graduate Handbook.

    The MS in Food and Nutrition Services consists of a minimum of 30 post-baccalaureate credit hours, of which up to 6 credit hours may be transferred from another university or from another master’s degree at UM.

    Requirements for the MSFNS Degree 

    Students can choose from two tracks within the Master in Science in Food and Nutrition services:

    1. The M.S. in Food and Nutrition Services (e.g., non-CP track)
    2. The M.S. in Food and Nutrition Services with the Coordinated Program in Dietetics track (e.g., CP track)

    The MSFNS degree (Non-CP track) consists of 6 hours of research core requirements and 24 hours of electives.

    The MSFNS degree (CP track) consists of 6 hours of research core requirements, 3 hours of electives, 12 hours of CP core, 6 hours CP support courses, 1 hour supervised practice preparation and 8 hours of supervised practice.

    • Students in either track may choose to take an additional 6 hours of thesis.
    • Students can find a detailed list of suggested electives in the Program Study form.
    • Thesis credits (NHM 697) or supervised practice credits (NHM 699) may not be used as electives.

    Students are required to file with the GPC the Program of Study form signed by their Master’s Advisory Committee before enrolling for NHM 693, 697, or 699 credits or taking the master’s written comps, whichever is earlier.

    • Once filed, any changes to the Program of Study would require approval of the Master’s Advisory Committee.

    Add slips for courses offered in the department are reviewed and signed by the instructor and the Department Chair. 

    Prerequisites for admissions

    To be considered for admission to the Master of Science in Food and Nutrition Services, students must have completed the following courses:

    • ServSafe manager’s certification granted from the National Restaurant Association or equivalent (e.g., NHM 111)
    • 3-4 credit hours of Principles of Food Preparation/Food Preparation Lab (e.g., NHM 211/213)
    • A 3-hour course in Introductory/General Human Nutrition (e.g., NHM 311)
    • A 3-hour course in Foodservice Systems Management (e.g., NHM 441/461)
    • A 3-hour course(s) in Nutrition Assessment and Nutrition Care Process (e.g., NHM 410; Nutrition emphasis only)
    • A 3-hour course in Marketing Principles (e.g., GB 350; HM emphasis only)
    • A 3-hour course in Human Resource Management (e.g., NHM 466 or Mgmt 383; HM emphasis only)
    • Six hours of Accounting Principles (e.g., Accy 201 and 202; HM emphasis only)
    Transferring students should know that up to 6 credit hours may be transferable from another university or from another master’s degree at UM.

    Application Process

    Applications for admission to the graduate programs must be submitted to the University of Mississippi Graduate School through the online application process.

    In order to be assured consideration, applicant's must submit the following materials to the Graduate School prior to the aforementioned deadlines: 

    • An online application completed through the Graduate School website.
    • A statement of purpose not exceeding 1,000 words, which clearly demonstrates your interest in the field, readiness to pursue a graduate degree, academic and professional goals, and how joining the graduate program will help you meet these goals.

      You can also include a statement on how you will contribute to the diversity of the classroom, department, and university community. (Find more information about our commitment to diversity through UM's Recruiting Fellowship and Scholarship Program)

      This document should be uploaded as an attachment to the Graduate School online application.
    • 2 Letters of academic and professional reference should speak to the applicant’s readiness and ability to succeed in the graduate program.

      Remember: the Graduate School’s online reference system sends requests to the recommenders. 
    • Official GRE scores taken within 5 years of applying to the graduate program sent to the Graduate School

      Note: The GRE requirement is waived for the applicants of Online Masters in Hospitality Management.
    • Official transcripts from all institutions where a degree was obtained AND from institutions attended for any graduate work sent to the Graduate School.
    • Resume or CV is required for those applying to the Coordinated Program in Dietetics CP.

      This requirement is optional for all other applicants. 
    • Official English proficiency test scores (Only if the applicant’s native language is not English). Submit TOEFL, IELTS, or Pearson’s Test of Academic English scores taken within 2 years of applying to the graduate program sent to the Graduate School.
    • Interviews are required for prospective PhD students. Prospective students should contact potential advisors.

      The advisor is mutually agreed upon by the student and faculty and should be identified in the statement of purpose.

    Instructions for submitting application materials such as test scores and transcripts can be found on the Graduate School website.

    For questions about the submission process, email the Graduate Schooll.

    Application deadlines

    Students must submit all of the required documentation to the Graduate School before the following deadlines. 

    Degree ProgramDeadline for Fall admissionDeadline for Spring admission
    M.S. in Food and Nutrition ServicesJanuary 15 (rolling*)October 15 (rolling)
    Online Masters in Hospitality ManagementJuly 15 (rolling)December 15 (rolling)
    Ph.D. in Nutrition and Hospitality ManagementMarch 1 (for full funding eligibility)N/A

    *Applications received after January 15 will not be considered for CP.

    In case these dates fall on a weekend or legal holiday, the deadlines are automatically extended to the next business day.

    After acceptance, applications for graduate assistantship may be submitted online. 

    *Applicants for M.S. in FNS who will also be pursuing the Coordinated Program must fulfill the additional requirements:

    • An online application form for the CP must be submitted.
    • The same Statement of Purpose document will be used for both Graduate School application as well as CP application. Applicants who are pursuing the CP should also address CP-related expectations in the document submitted in their Graduate School application.
    • The letters received through the Graduate School application system will be forwarded to the CP application for review and there is no need to send duplicate letters directly to the CP director.

    The University of Mississippi Coordinated Program in Dietetics (UM CP) is a full-time graduate program within the Department of Nutrition and Hospitality Management (NHM) that provides didactic coursework and a minimum of 1200 hours of supervised practice, allowing graduates to achieve all competencies needed to sit for the Registered Dietitian Nutritionist examination administered by the Commission on Dietetics Registration (CDR).

    • Upon completion of the program, students will be awarded a Master of Science in Food & Nutrition Services.


    Program Requirements & Schedule

    The UM CP is a 21-month graduate program that provides 1200 hours of supervised practice hours coordinated with a 30 semester-hour Master of Science in Food and Nutrition Services (MSFNS). Please refer to the Graduate Handbook for detailed policies and procedures. 

    The program begins in the fall semester of each year and follows the University of Mississippi’s academic calendar.

    The majority of the first fall and spring semesters are spent in coursework that prepare the students to enter supervised practice settings. Some supervised practice hours and alternate practice experiences, such as role playing, case studies, and hands-on demonstrations, are provided throughout the first year’s coursework.\

    Beginning in the first summer semester and continuing through the second fall and spring semesters, students rotate through various professional work settings, while completing any courses or academic requirements for the MSFNS.

    All students are scheduled for 734 hours of on-site supervised practice in the areas of acute clinical, WIC, long-term care, intermediate care, renal, foodservice management, and school foodservice. The remaining hours will be completed in specialty rotations based on student interests and professional goals.

    Admission Requirements to the Coordinated Program in Dietetics

    Students must be admitted to the Master of Science in Food and Nutrition Services Graduate Program (MSFNS) at the University of Mississippi before being considered as a candidate for the University of Mississippi Coordinated Program in Dietetics (UM CP).

    The application for UM Graduate School can be found here, and the admission requirements for the MSFNS can be found here. Students may submit applications to the MSFNS and the UM CP at the same time. However, the UM CP application will not be considered prior to acceptance into the MSFNS.

    Additional admission requirements include either a DPD Verification Statement or successful completion of the following pre-requisite courses. Students may apply to the UM CP before the courses are completed, but will need to indicate how and when they plan to satisfy the pre-requisites prior to the start date.

    Required pre-requisite courses, include:

    • Servsafe, either an academic course or current certification (UM equivalent NHM 111)
    • Basic Foods or Culinary course (UM equivalent NHM 211/213)
    • Menu development course (UM equivalent NHM 309)
    • General Nutrition course (UM equivalent NHM 311)
    • Nutrition Assessment course (UM equivalent NHM 410)
    • Medical Nutrition Therapy course (UM Equivalent NHM 412)
    • Foodservice Management course (UM equivalent NHM 441)
    • Minimum 6 hours of Human Anatomy & Physiology w/2 hours lab (UM equivalent Bisc 206 & 207) OR minimum of 3 hours of a 300-level or higher physiology course w/1 hour lab (UM equivalent BISC 330)
    • Minimum 3 hours organic chemistry w/1 hour lab (UM equivalent Chem 221/225)
    • OR combined survey of organic and biochemistry course
    • Minimum 3 hours biochemistry (UM equivalent Chem 271) OR combined survey of organic and biochemistry course
    • Psychology or Sociology course (UM equivalents Psych 201 and Soc 101 are examples)

    Application Procedures & Deadlines

    Students who would like to apply to the Coordinated Program in Dietetics must: 

    1. Apply to the MSFNS by completing the UM Graduate School application.
    2. Complete the online CP Application Form. You may submit this form before you are admitted to the MSFNS, but your CP Application will not be considered until your status in the MSFNS is determined.
    3. (Optional) Submit updated versions of your resume, personal statement, recommendation letters, and/or transcripts via email to the UM CP Director

    If your original application was submitted >6 months ago, we recommend submitting an updated version.

    The deadline for regular applications is 5:00 p.m. on January 15th of each year. 

    • Current UM undergraduate and graduate students can submit their admission application early. Early applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on October 15th. 
      • Up to 5 students may be selected during this application period. 
      • If a student applies and isn't selected during this application period, they can request to be considered again during the regular application period without submitting a new application. 

    Students will be notified within 4 weeks of the outcome of their application after the first round of selections. The following areas are considered during the first round of selections and scoring is based on information gleaned from all areas of the application (e.g., resume, personal statement, recommendation letters, and transcripts).

    • Academic Achievement
    • Desirable characteristics: perseverance, initiative, time management, interpersonal skills, and self-awareness
    • Professional Skills & Experience: clinical, food preparation and/or serving, management, and other (such as fluent in a language other than English or teaching).

      To assist in scoring your application, we recommend that you indicate the approximate hours/week and approximately how many weeks/months/years you were involved in specific volunteer activities or jobs. These can be indicated directly on your resume or described in your personal statement.

    Students who advance to the second round of selections will be asked to interview with a panel of preceptors, the UM CP Director, and/or current students and faculty via Zoom.

    • The following areas are scored during the second round of selection: verbal communication skills, organizational skills, conflict resolution, and self-awareness.

    Students are charged tuition and course fees based on the number of hours they are enrolled each semester. More details about tuition can be found at the University Bursar’s website. Information about total cost of attendance can be found at the University’s Office of Financial Aid website.

    A $150 course fee will be added each of the semesters (minimum of 3) that the student is registered for NHM 699 Supervised Practice. This course fee covers incidental costs incurred by the program for activities at rotation sites (such as food for cooking demonstrations), activities to enhance experiential learning (such as taste testing oral nutrition supplements), and program director travel to rotation sites.

    In addition to tuition and fees, students should be prepared for the following program costs:

    • Textbook/supplies                                                                             Approximately $800
    • Professional liability insurance for at least 1 year                              Approximately $75/year
    • Professional membership fees for 2 years                                         Approximately $50/year
    • Travel to supervised practice sites in 2nd year                                    Approximately $1000
    • Travel to at least 1 professional meeting                                           Approximately $1000
    • TB Skin test, Drug screening, other medical documentation           Approximately $100
    • Online course fee for one required course                                           Approximately $100

    *Some required courses are offered online in some semesters. If students choose to take the course during the semester that it is offered online, a course fee of $33.33 per credit hour will be assessed. More information can be found on Ole Miss Online website.

    Full-time or part-time graduate students are eligible for federally guaranteed student loans and other forms of financial assistance. Those interested in such assistance should contact the University of Mississippi Office of Financial Aid at 1-800-891-4596 or at

    Professional scholarships may be available through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Foundation. Information about these scholarships can be found at Additionally, students may apply for graduate assistantships (application link) for the first year of the program. It is not usually not recommended that students hold a graduate assistantship during the second year of the program, due to scheduling availability at supervised practice sites. Discussion with the CP Director is strongly recommended before accepting a graduate assistantship during the second year to avoid delayed placement at certain sites and delayed completion of the program.

    Program Mission

    The mission of the Coordinated Program in Dietetics is to prepare competitive entry-level registered dietitian nutritionists by combining graduate courses with supervised practice experiences to offer the student diverse exposures in education, research, and practice.

    Program Goals & Objectives

    Goal 1: Graduates will utilize evidence-based principles to practice as entry-level Registered Dietitian Nutritionists in a variety of settings.

    • Objective 1: At least 80% of students complete program requirements within 32 months (2 years, 8 months).
    • Objective 2: Of graduates who seek employment, at least 80% are employed in nutrition and dietetics or related fields within 12 months of graduation.
    • Objective 3: At least 90% of program graduates take the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists within 12 months of program completion.
    • Objective 4: The program’s one-year pass rate (graduates who pass the registration exam within one year of first attempt) on the CDR credentialing exam for dietitian nutritionists is at least 80%.
    • Objective 5: At least 80% of employers responding to a survey state that they “agree” or “strongly agree” with the statement “The UM CP Graduate was adequately prepared for entry-level practice.”
    • Objective 6: At least 80% of employers responding to a survey state that they “agree” or “strongly agree” with the statement “The UM CP Graduate always utilizes evidence-based principles in their practice.”

    Goal 2: Graduates will be effective advocates and leaders in the profession of dietetics.

    • Objective 7: At least 80% of graduates will participate in advocacy and leadership opportunities (such as volunteering with a professional organization, planning for an advanced practice credential, representing the profession on an interprofessional team, or holding a formal leadership position) within the first 12 months after graduation.

    *Program outcomes data are available upon request.

    The Coordinated Program in Dietetics at the University of Mississippi is accredited by The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND®), 120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2190, Chicago, IL 60606-6995, 312/899-0040 ext 5400.

    • More information about accreditation can be found at the ACEND website.

    Effective January 1, 2024, the Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) will require a minimum of a master’s degree to be eligible to take the credentialing exam to become a registered dietitian nutritionist (RDN).

    In order to be approved for registration examination eligibility with a bachelor’s degree, an individual must meet all eligibility requirements and be submitted into CDR’s Registration Eligibility Processing System (REPS) before 12:00 midnight Central Time, December 31, 2023.


    CollegeSchool of Applied Sciences
    ProgramM.S. in Food and Nutrition Services: Coordinated Program in Dietetics
    Program Licensure OutcomesThe Coordinated Program in Dietetics at The University of Mississippi is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). Upon graduation, students are eligible to take the exam for Registered Dietitian Nutritionists, administered by the Commission for Dietetic Registration (CDR).


    Individuals must meet state regulations, determined by occupational settings, for the state in which they wish to practice. Compliance with state regulatory requirements is mandatory, and the only avenue towards legal practice.

    Program Regulated by every state licensure / certification boardThis program meets the regulations for licensure in the state of Mississippi.


    We have not determined if the program curriculum meets the educational requirements for licensure or certification in the other US states, territories or the District of Columbia.

    College Program
    More informationThe National Accrediting Body (CDR) supplies information relative to individual state regulations.
    Date of Last Revision2/8/2022

    What does food and nutrition services look like on the job market?


    Median income for Dietitians and Nutritionists in 2022.


    Median income for Food Service Managers in 2022.

    What can you do with a food and nutrition services degree?

    • Food Service Manager
    • Clinical Dietitian
    • Pediatric Dietitian
    • Culinary Health Advisor
    • Consumer Advocate
    • Policy Analyst
    • Restaurateur
    • Nutrition Journalist

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    Georgianna Mann Schroeder

    We're here for you!

    We are here to answer any questions you have about the Masters in Science in Food and Nutrition Services. 

    Georgianna Mann Schroeder

    Associate Professor of Nutrition and Hospitality Management and Director of Online Hospitality Management Master's Program

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