Family, Consumer and Nutritional Sciences (FCSN) Vision and Mission
Vision - To be an innovative department renowned for rigorous, diverse programs of study steeped in the Catholic liberal arts tradition and distinguished by exemplary graduates responsibly engaged in the world.
Mission - Founded first on Catholic liberal arts tradition and offering rigorous programs of study, the Family, Consumer and Nutritional Sciences (FCNS) department educates women to be professional, ethical leaders. Grounded in science, the students become content experts with an innovative mindset and professional voice. The curriculum empowers students to understand and reflect upon the multi-faceted issues facing individuals and families today, challenging graduates to advocate for the dear neighbor without distinction in a socially responsible manner. Strong inter-professional and community collaborations prepare women for transformational leadership, life-long learning and a commitment to sustainability in the global context.
Curious about food and how it directly affects our health and well being? Want to know how food prevents ailments, treats disease and maintains optimum health? St. Kate's nationally respected dietetics major, established almost 80 years ago, teaches you how food and nutrition relate to human health and physiology — and how to communicate scientific information about food in a practical, engaging way.
St. Kate's will prepare you to become a registered dietitian with ethical and innovative leadership skills. Your knowledge will apply to many areas, including restaurants, spas and resorts, heath clubs, food-processing companies, hospitals, schools, and government agencies like the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention.
— Assistant Professor Deb Sheats
Accredited, big-picture program
Our rigorous program is accredited by the Commission on the Accreditation of Dietetic Education of the American Dietetic Association (CADE) and provides students with a four-year degree that prepares them for a 6–12 month dietetic internship after graduation. Our dietetic program covers all aspects of dietetics, including food labeling and additives, nutritional needs throughout the lifespan, menu planning and weight control, to name a few. Students take courses in food science, intercultural foods, food service operations, nutrition, chemistry, microbiology, human physiology, biomedical ethics and the social sciences.
Classroom to career
One hundred percent of our students have passed the competitive Registered Dietitian (RD) exam since 1969, when registration first started. Dedicated St. Kate's faculty, with RD credentials themselves, will mentor you through each required step for becoming an RD.
Impressive food lab
Similar to a large commercial kitchen, our contemporary food lab is outfitted with a variety of cook-tops with both gas and electric ovens. The lab is well-stocked, complete with an overhead demonstration mirror to give you a clear, unobstructed view of what's being prepared or what's being described.
In "Intercultural Foods," you learn about cultural and religious food patterns and how to create culturally sensitive recipes with food-shelf items. You then head to Neighborhood House, a service center in St. Paul for immigrants and low-income individuals, to teach cooking classes. In "Community Lifespan Nutrition," you visit local community nutrition centers and schools to share the importance of nutrition in preventing disease and promoting health with all age groups.
Early career advantage
We're the only dietetics program in Minnesota that requires you to conduct original research and present it at the Twin Cities District Dietetic Association. These experiences are a definite plus in a job interview, and for launching a successful career in food research and development. You must also compile a portfolio of your best work. At St. Kate's, we believe that personal reflection on academic achievements and professional experiences inspires greater growth — and keeps you a step ahead in this competitive field.
Our faculty specialize in many areas, including public health nutrition, chronic disease prevention, sports nutrition and food safety. They are captivating teachers, active researchers and influential members of professional organizations. Assistant professor Debra Barone Sheats is a textbook reviewer and frequent guest lecturer with several community groups. Assistant professor Teri Burgess-Champoux is a reviewer/site visitor with CADE. Professor Emerita Julie Miller Jones is a scientific advisor for the Grains Food Foundation and a judge in the annual cookbook awards for the James Beard Foundation.
Dynamic food industry
St. Kate's is located in a state long known for its food industry and leadership in flour milling, grain shipping and food processing. Representatives from Twin Cities-based companies such as General Mills, Land O'Lakes, Target, Cargill and Malt-O-Meal have been invited on campus to speak about their industries and professional experience.