The Oregon Public Health Division’s 2012 State Health Profile Report exposed obesity and overweight conditions as contributing factors in to the premature deaths of approximately 1,500 Oregonians each year, making it the second largest cause of preventable death in the state. The report suggested that a lack of fruit and vegetables in daily diets might attribute to statewide obesity.
To eradicate the occurrence of preventable conditions like obesity, many people turn to nutritionists for advice on creating healthy, balanced lifestyles. Unlike some states, Oregon does not require nutritionists to adhere to licensing or any other regulatory restrictions. However, all nutritionists that intend to become dieticians or use the title of “licensed dietician” must become licensed to legally practice here.
Students that are interested in becoming a nutritionist in Oregon should begin building a solid career by earning a bachelor’s degree in a nutrition-related major. Since there are no regulations governing this profession, most clients and colleagues will gauge a nutritionist’s expertise based on their educational background. Fortunately, Oregon is home to state universities that offer degree programs for aspiring nutritionists. These programs typically instruct in career applicable subjects such as biostatistics, medical ethics, physiology, and human nutrition.
Nutritionist Degree options in Oregon include:
Jobseekers will benefit from continued job growth in the coming decade. According to the Oregon Employment Department, in 2012, there were 586 dieticians and nutritionists employed in the state. However, by 2022, this number is expected to climb to 684, which indicates a 16.7% change in employment. Job opportunities are typically more abundant in areas of higher populations. In 2012, the Oregon regions with the largest number of employed dieticians and nutritionists included:
The Oregon Employment Department reports that dieticians and nutritionists employed throughout the state in 2014 received an average hourly wage of $29.77 and an average annual salary of $61,932. However, pay expectations typically fluctuate across geographical locations. For example, average wages and salaries for nutritionists working in different regions in Oregon include:
Although literally hundreds of industries now hire nutritionists in Oregon, currently the top industry employer in the state is the health care and social assistance industry. Institutes that fall under this category include offices of physicians, outpatient care centers, general medical and surgical hospitals, and nursing care facilities. These local employers that have recently advertised jobs seeking dieticians and nutritionists in Oregon:
Nutritionists looking for job placement assistance or occupational support services are encouraged to join a professional association that caters to nutritionists and dieticians. These organizations are specifically designed to promote career excellence by providing members with opportunities in education, training, certification, employment, professional networking, and industry event participation. Professional associations open to nutritionists in Oregon include: