Nutritionists continue to be a powerful tool in the fight against obesity in New Jersey. By providing clients with informative assessments, personalized diet plans, and food-related advice services, nutritionists are helping to popularize preventive solutions for future generations. Statistics by the New Jersey Department of Health illustrate the prevalence of obesity among state residents:
According to the Center for Nutrition Advocacy, the laws concerning licensure for nutrition professionals in New Jersey are in hot debate. Although the New Jersey Dietetics Association is pushing for mandatory licensure, cross-sections of the general public fear that licensure restrictions may create a dietetic monopoly that may result in unemployment for many otherwise qualified nutritionists. However, there are currently no formal regulations governing nutritionists practicing in New Jersey.
In lieu of professional licensing regulations, nutritionists in New Jersey can prove their occupational knowledge and skills by earning a college degree in nutrition. By graduating from a college degree program, nutritionists reassure clients of their ability to provide quality care while simultaneously illustrating professional competency among colleagues.
Students are advised to enroll in a nutrition degree program that that is accredited by a recognized accrediting agency such as the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics. Degree programs with concentrations in nutrition-related disciplines typically provide coursework that is extensively weighted with science-related subjects like biology, chemistry, physics, and physiology.
Examples of degree programs in nutrition found in New Jersey include:
Studies by the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics reveal that in 2010 there were 1,940 dieticians and nutritionists employed in New Jersey. However, by 2020 this number is expected to grow to 2,090, which expresses an 8% growth change in ten years. As of May 2013, the New York-White Plains-Wayne Metropolitan Division of New Jersey held the highest concentration of employed dieticians and nutritionists in the state.
The United States Bureau of Labor declares the national median wage for dieticians and nutritionists is $26.88/hr. and the median salary is $55,900/yr. However, nutrition professionals working in New Jersey can expect even higher pay schedules. Here, the median wage is $30.74/hr. and the median salary is $63,900/yr.
Jobseekers looking for nutritionist jobs in New Jersey may find opportunities available in in-patient and outpatient care facilities like Lourdes Health System in Camden, medical care providers like Fresenius Medical Care in Montclair, or rehabilitation centers like Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation in Saddle Brook. Nursing homes, hospital, state health departments and local school systems also typically hire nutritionists throughout New Jersey.