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Environmental Health Sciences

Human Nutrition


What Do Public Health Nutritionists, Dietitians, and Nutrition Scientists Do?

Nutrition has become a topic of national and global interest in the past decade with intensifying research and scholarship related to obesity, chronic disease risks, food safety and security, global hunger and undernutrition, and the environmental and health impacts of agriculture. Professionals and researchers with advanced degrees in nutritional sciences create and apply interdisciplinary knowledge about diet and human nutrition to improve public health and advance our understanding of contemporary nutrition problems.

The Program

In one of the top ranked public health schools in the US, the Human Nutrition Program offers MPH, MS, and PhD degrees. The program also provides unique opportunities to pursue interdisciplinary certificates in sustainable food systems, global health, and risk science as well as the option to obtain the Registered Dietitian (RD) credential through an affiliated dietetic internship.

From nutrigenomics and epigenetics to the clinical and community translation of nutritional science, our faculty provide a breadth of knowledge, skills, and research opportunities to those students seeking a twenty-first-century curriculum in cellular, physiological, epidemiological, global, and public health nutrition. This is a research-driven, interdisciplinary program with strengths in:

  • Nutritional epidemiology linking diet to obesity and chronic disease (cancers, cardiovascular disease, diabetes).
  • Nutrition as a modifier of adverse environmental exposures across the lifecycle.
  • Nutrition and immune function.
  • Global nutrition and food sustainability.
  • Eating disorders prevention and epidemiology of weight-related disorders.

The Human Nutrition Program collaborates with many other schools and programs at the university, including: health behavior, epidemiology, food systems and sustainability, planning and policy, metabolomics, cancer, cardiovascular disease, pediatrics, endocrinology, and kinesiology. These collaborations enrich didactic, research, and mentoring opportunities for students in the Human Nutrition Program.


Public health nutritionists, dietitians, and nutrition scientists work in a wide variety of employment settings including:

  • Hospitals and other health-care facilities
  • Colleges, universities, and medical centers
  • Community and public health settings
  • Food and nutrition-related business and industries
  • Sports nutrition and corporate wellness programs
  • Private practice
  • Multilateral organizations of the United Nations
  • Government agencies and policy think tanks
  • International non-governmental organizations (NGOs)

For more information, please visit our careers page.

Financial Support

Qualified students can receive financial support through grants or scholarships from the Rackham Graduate School and the School of Public Health. Please visit our Admissions & Financial Aid page for more information.

How Do I Apply?

Applicants should have a strong interest in science and health, an undergraduate degree in some field of basic or applied science, and, at a minimum, should have taken courses in biology and/or physiology, general and organic chemistry, physics, and calculus.

MPH applicants apply to our program through SOPHAS (School of Public Health Application Service), a centralized application service for public health.

MS and PhD applicants apply to our program through the University of Michigan Rackham Graduate School.

More Information

For answers to any questions that you might have, please visit other pages on this website and/or contact:

Sue Crawford
Student Administrative Coordinator

Susan Aaronson
Human Nutrition Program Manager