Dietary Manager

Dietary managers, under the direction of a dietitian, assist with nutrition therapy, dietetics, employee management and food safety. Students may earn an associate of science with a concentration in dietary management or a one-year certificate in dietary management. As students you are eligible for the ANFP Pre-Professional membership.  Students who complete the certificate and graduate are eligible to take the national certification exam offered by the Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Professionals and to join as ANFP Professional Members. Two credentials are earned upon passing the exam – Certified Dietary Manager (CDM) and Certified Food Protection Professional (CFPP). Students also earn the nationally recognized certificate of ServSafe Food Protection Certification, accredited by the American National Standards Institute – Conference for Food Protection (CFP).

CDMs and CFFPs are nationally recognized experts at managing food service operations. A CDM works with registered dietitians to provide quality nutritional care for clients in a variety of settings, including health-care facilities, nursing homes, rehab facilities, senior living communities, hospitals, correctional facilities and schools. They perform a variety of specialized tasks that may include: overseeing large-scale meal planning and preparation; budgeting for and purchasing food, equipment and supplies; enforcing sanitary and safety regulation, and preparing records and reports. They may provide supportive nutrition screening, documentation and care planning.

Once you have been admitted to Stark State, you will need to apply to the program and complete all the requirements.  The certificate is a 17 credit program, while the associate consists of 63 credits. The program, at a minimum, which is the certificate, consists of 120 classroom hours and 150 field experience hours.  Classroom instruction is taught by qualified and experienced instructors. The field experience hours are precepted by qualified professionals and a dietitian oversees the minimum of 50 nutrition hours.  Most students are able to complete the certificate in two semesters and the associate in two years.  Additional information is available on the college website in regards to different policies and procedures for a new student.  Information can also be obtained from the Dietary Program Director.

The Stark State College Dietary Management Program is accredited by the Association of Nutrition and Foodservice Professionals (ANFP), 406 Surrey Woods Drive, St. Charles, IL 60174.  Their phone is 800-323-1908 and can be found at

The associate of science in dietary manager can serve as the first step toward a bachelor’s degree in dietetics or nutrition. Work experience and completion of a dietary manager certificate may be adequate to obtain many positions. A dietary manager credential, such as the certificate or associate degree, allows you to work in the field while pursuing an advanced degree. Some positions in dietary management, such as a director of nutrition at a hospital or government agency, require a bachelor’s or master’s degree.

In addition, Stark State offers a one-year technical certificate for those interested in the dietary manager program.

Your pathway to a degree

You can start with a dietary manager certificate, taking classes that directly apply to a second certificate and to the associate degree in dietary manager. Completion of the certificate will allow you to sit for the national certification exam:

Dietary Manager Certificates

Associate Degree