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School of Nutrition

Program Overview

Take the First Step For Your Best Tomorrow


Why SCNM? Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine & Health Sciences (SCNM) focuses on the fundamental importance food and nutrition play in integrated healthcare, natural products and nutraceuticals. Our students gain practical expertise through innovative online coursework that addresses current needs, including the latest research illuminating the vital connections between what we consume and how we live our best life. Graduates are prepared for diverse careers in clinical environments, non-profits, academia, business, industry and manufacturing.

Our Master in Nutrition faculty are industry leaders. In addition, our community clinics, natural products medicinary, clinical focus on regenerative medicine and new on-site botanical lab are at the forefront of evidence-based research. Driving student success for our on-campus naturopathic students has provided the platform for these innovative degrees.

Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition (MSCN)

SCNM’s Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition educates students in nutritional sciences, self-care, whole food nutrition and the responsible use of dietary supplements...

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Master of Science in Nutrition Business Leadership (MSNBL)

Starting 2021, the Master of Science in Nutrition Business Leadership educates students in the nutritional sciences, supply chain, regulations, leadership and management.

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Expand Your Knowledge


Which Master’s in Nutrition is Right for You?


Nutrition is at the center of human health. Science has shown us that nutrition is the strongest determinant of our health. The world, your community, your business, your family and the natural products industry needs food/science-driven nutritionists and professionals who have a deep, evidence-based and practical understanding of nutrition.

In recent years, there has been a shift in the industry from utilizing nutritionists for single-instance consultations in standalone facilities to the pronounced integration of nutrition within the continual management of chronic disease. With this shift to an integrated healthcare delivery system, we’ve seen a growing need for evidence-based nutritionists and a need for scientific knowledge of nutrition paired with business knowledge. The unification of science with business know-how is key to serving the natural foods, dietary supplement and nutraceutical industry.

Students in the Master of Science in Nutrition Business Leadership program gain the essential evidence-based, scientific and business knowledge and skills that add value to the companies they work for and advance their careers. SCNM developed the innovative and 100% online curriculum with input from global industry experts and thought leaders to equip graduates with current, realistic and evidenced-based training. The program offers insights from both national and international perspectives with a focus on personal, environmental and corporate sustainability. Unlike any other program, the MSNBL educates students in the nutritional sciences, supply chain (including ingredient procurement, product manufacturing, regulations, sales and marketing), and in leadership and management—all specific to the multi-billion-dollar natural foods and dietary supplement industry.

The Master of Science in Clinical Nutrition program transforms students who are passionate about nutrition into leaders and healers in the field of clinical nutrition. Students gain the professional knowledge, skills and behaviors necessary to develop and implement effective and evidence-based nutrition related services to support individual and public health. The innovative and 100% online curriculum has been developed with input from experts and thought leaders in the field of nutrition. The MSCN educates students in nutritional sciences, self-care, whole food nutrition and the responsible use of dietary supplements while also covering emerging topics such as nutrigenomics and microbiomics. Additionally, the program includes a novel Virtual Health Center Experience where students practice applying new skills and knowledge safely in a virtual training environment. Graduates will be prepared for success in private clinical practice or to be employed in integrative practices, community health or corporate settings. The program also introduces students to innovative ways to leverage their training from developing a telemedicine practice to becoming an entrepreneur in the multi-billion-dollar natural foods and dietary supplement industry.

Whether you desire to enter the healthcare field through clinical nutrition as a Certified Nutrition Specialist (CNS), educator, researcher or to gain insight into the business world of nutrition, we have the nutrition program you need. With a degree from SCNM, you will be at the forefront of the world’s transformation to integrated health management.

Advisory Council

Our advisory council includes industry executives who are passionate about nutrition and are an integral part in the development of the MSCN and MSNBL curriculum.
MSNBLadvisorycouncil@scnm.edu


Meet the Dean


Gena E. Kadar, DC, MS.MEdL, CNS

Dean, College of Nutrition

Over the past 20 years, Dr. Kadar has distinguished herself as a clinician, educator, bridge-builder and innovator of evidence-based nutrition curricula. She is a champion of integrative medicine who unites healthcare providers to deliver interprofessional health and wellness with a focus on patient-centered practices.

SCNM | Gena Kadar

Frequently Asked Questions


Everything is changing. Not only is the integrative healthcare industry realizing the increased need for nutrition as a vital complement to medical treatment, but the population is looking for healthier ways to live. Because of this push, credentialing for clinical nutritionists has changed. Are you a CNS or RD—and what does this mean for your education and career outlook?

Certified Nutrition Specialist

Certified Nutrition Specialists (CNS) are advanced nutrition professionals. They engage in science-based advanced medical nutrition therapy, research, education, and more, in a variety of settings. They have fulfilled the most rigorous advanced-degree, education, experience, examination, and continuing education requirements. The Certified Nutrition Specialist certification is held by clinical nutritionists, physicians, and other advanced-degree healthcare professionals with a specialty in nutrition. To become a CNS, you must have a graduate degree.

The CNS certification is fully accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA).

SCNM’s Master in Clinical Nutrition program has been fully vetted by the Board of Certification of Nutrition Specialists (BCNS), and the program has been deemed eligible to provide a pathway to the CNS credential.

SCNM’s Master in Clinical Nutrition program fulfills the current academic requirements for the CNS. BCNS requires a graduate degree in the field of nutrition from the regionally accredited university, specific coursework, and 1,000 hours of supervised experience. BCNS reviews each candidate individually, including current course descriptions, transcripts, and experience to determine eligibility. To learn more about becoming a CNS, visit nutritionspecialists.org.

Registered Dietitian

Registered Dietitians (RD) and Registered Dietetic Nutritionists (RDN) are food and nutrition experts who have met the Commission on Dietetics Registration’s (CDR) criteria to earn RD credentials which allow them to practice. RDs work in a wide variety of employment settings, including healthcare, business, community/public health, education, research, and private practice. The Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics is the accrediting agency for RD educational programs preparing students for careers as registered dietitian nutritionists or nutrition and dietetics technicians.

The online nutrition master’s programs are not a dietetics master’s program.

Currently, you need a bachelor’s degree to become a RD. However, the CDR is changing the entry-level registration education requirements for dietitians. Beginning January 1, 2024, RDs must have a master’s degree. Stay ahead of the curve and prepare yourself now for 2024.

For more information on the CDR’s decision to change degree requirements for dietitian registration eligibility, visit here.

Career Opportunities
Students who graduate with a master’s degree in nutrition work in a variety of settings. A bachelor’s degree in nutrition is the minimum requirement to become a registered dietitian until 2024. A master’s degree in nutrition is required for the certified nutrition specialist (CNS) designation. SCNM’s clinical nutrition degree leads to the CNS certification. Moreover, a master’s can open up career opportunities in business, public health, education, medicine, and public policy, among other industries. Online master’s degrees in nutrition can also provide students who already hold a bachelor’s degree in nutrition with a more advanced understanding of the discipline.

Students who earn an online master’s in nutrition from SCNM have multiple career options.

Clinician: work in your own private practice, establish a telemedicine practice, or work as part of an integrative practice or health center with NDs, MDs, DCs, DOs, and other practitioners.

Food and Nutrition Management: work in hospitals, schools, businesses, and long-term care consulting on healthy food choices for their menus.

Public Health Nutrition: work with the Public Health Department, Women, Infants and Children, or Cooperative Extension.

Education and Research: work in academia or in community education, develop educational training programs.

Business and Industry: work in the food and dietary supplement industry in sales, as a consultant assisting in product design and formulations, develop educational training programs.

Media: work with trade associations, radio, print, blog, TV or web-based media.

International Food Organizations: work around the world with organizations such as the US Agency for International Deployment, Peace Corps, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, World Relief or Food for the Hungry.

Public Policy/Government: work with government agencies such as FDA, USDA and NIH, work with healthcare reform, regulatory or supplement labels.

Yes, SCNM utilizes online learning tools that take an innovative approach to personalizing the learning experience for each student. Innovations include adaptive learning tools, a virtual classroom, and personalized communication.

We integrate cutting edge and evidence-based instructional science and technology to optimize learning in our virtual classrooms. Our Master of Science courses include features such as:

  • Proven engagement strategies and instructional best practices using DeXL’s evidence-based Experience Engineering (learning design) process.
  • Optimal learning paths for each individual student that adapt in real-time to cater to your learning needs.
  • Recognition of the progress and performance of each individual student along program pathways.
  • Opportunities to interact with and belong to a community with your classmates.
  • Virtual face-to-face meetings with our expert faculty.
  • (For MSCN only) A one of a kind Virtual Health Center Experience to safety practice and apply your clinical knowledge and skills.

Master in Clinical Nutrition
Our master’s students study every aspect of nutrition at the graduate level. In addition to advanced nutrition courses, the online Master in Clinical Nutrition includes courses such as dietary and supplement guidelines, evidence informed practice and decision making, and nutritional interventions for chronic disease. This program incorporates clinical practice through the Virtual Health Center Experience and deep one-to-one interaction with our faculty.


Course List
Master in Nutritional Business Leadership
Students in the Master in Nutrition Business Leadership will take courses such as leadership development, new product development and manufacturing, and sustainability and corporate social responsibility. This program offers insights from both national and international perspectives, with a focus on personal, environmental, and corporate sustainability.


Course List

An MBA With a Focus on Nutrition or an MS in Nutrition Business Leadership?


Do you know the difference between an MBA and an MSNBL? As you decide to advance your career in the natural products industry, getting the right degree is key. While there are similarities between a Master of Business Administration and Master of Science in Nutrition Business Leadership, understanding the differences will allow you to better match your education to your professional interests, goals, and objectives within the natural products industry

Nutrition Industry References


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