The University of North Carolina’s Department of Nutrition at UNC-Chapel Hill provides nutrition training to undergraduate and graduate students who are studying to be physicians, educators, public health advisors, dietitians, nurses, nutritionists, policy makers or any other careers that require knowledge of nutrition and the role it plays in health and society.

The Department of Nutrition is the only such academic department in the United States that is a member of both a school of public health and a school of medicine. This dual role expands the base of expertise available to our department; extends to every nutrition student the opportunity to take courses in public health and medicine; increases the variety and caliber of students who may take a nutrition course; and affirms our commitment to the importance of studying nutrition as it relates to the physical health of human beings.

Our Students

BSPH Nutrition Program

  • Nutrition Science and Research Track – An excellent preparation for medical and other health professional graduate programs, this track provides students in-depth exposure to the science of nutrition and metabolism while incorporating required research under the supervision of a faculty member.
  • Nutrition Health and Society Track – Recognizing the truly interdisciplinary nature of nutrition, this track provides students an opportunity to study nutrition through the lenses of policy, sustainable food systems, and interventions while allowing the flexibility to customize 18 credits of study in related coursework.
Sanjay Gadi

Sanjay Gadi, class of 2018

“The BSPH Nutrition program at Gillings represented a wealth of diverse focuses and resources all uniquely available through a single degree program. I enjoyed studying an intriguing combination of nutritional biochemistry and public health, offering me the opportunity to explore human health and disease from the cellular to societal levels. In addition, the program provided me the structure and the resources to pursue a senior honors thesis in which I developed the skills to design and execute my own project. As I enter my next chapter at Harvard Medical School to pursue my MD degree, the perspectives I have gained and the skills I have built will help me become a more knowledgeable and compassionate care provider.”

Click here to learn more about applying to the BSPH Nutrition Program, or get to know our Student Ambassadors.


MPH Nutrition Concentration and MPH Registered Dietitian Program

Jeff Walker

Jeff Walker, class of 2017

“When I joined the MPH-RD program at UNC I wanted to learn about nutrition at the community level. The faculty taught classes across the spectrum from molecular to global and the internships provided opportunities to see potential jobs firsthand. By the time I finished my advanced field experience with Carolina for Kibera in Kenya, I was excited and well prepared. So prepared that I was offered an innovative job that didn’t even exist when I became a Tar Heel!”

GRE scores are not required for admission to this program. If you are in need of an application fee waiver, please see the Graduate School’s site, or contact our Academic Coordinator.

Click here to learn more about applying to the MPH Nutrition Concentration.

Click here to learn more about applying to the MPH Registered Dietitian Program.


MS Nutrition Program

Jennifer Lyu

Jennifer Lyu, class of 2018

“The MS Nutrition program offers an excellent opportunity to truly delve deeper into the realm of research. As a student in the BSPH-MS program, I was able to expand my senior honors thesis into a Master’s thesis that focused on nutrition education among patients with type 1 diabetes in Beijing, China. The MS program specifically allowed me to enroll in courses that prepared me with the necessary skills and knowledge that were applicable to my research. It also provided me the privilege to collaborate with extraordinary faculty who are truly passionate about public health research and who genuinely support student learning and achievement. As I begin my next adventure exploring research at Boston Children’s Hospital, I am excited to apply the experiences and skills I have learned from this program and I will always be so grateful to have been a part of the Gillings community.”

GRE scores are not required for admission to this program. If you are in need of an application fee waiver, please see the Graduate School’s site, or contact our Academic Coordinator.

Click here to learn more about applying to the MS Nutrition Program.


PhD Nutrition Program

Loneke Blackman Carr

Loneke Blackman Carr, class of 2017

“My doctoral training in the Department of Nutrition has prepared me to conduct rigorous and meaningful science to address the most challenging public health problems. As a graduate, now applying the various skills and methods learned, it is clear that my training was tailored to provide me an advanced and practical education. Presently, I am a Postdoctoral Associate focused on the connections between religion, health and race. The Department of Nutrition and the Gillings School of Global Public Health have prepared me well to address obesity health disparities in underserved and under researched communities.”

GRE scores are not required for admission to this program. If you are in need of an application fee waiver, please see the Graduate School’s site, or contact SPH OSA and complete this form.

Click here to learn more about applying to the PhD Nutrition Program. If you are a prospective doctoral student, please see below for additional important information.

The PhD Nutrition Program is a proud participant of the Biological and Biomedical Sciences Program (BBSP).


Ready to Apply?

Visit our Apply page for more information.

Prospective doctoral students should also do the following:

  • Complete a Program Information Request (this link will open in a new tab).
  • Identify faculty members within the Department whose research matches your interests. Admission to the PhD Program in Nutrition is largely based on identifying a match between an applicant and a faculty member of similar research interests who is willing to provide funding for the student. Applicants may search our faculty based on research areas here.
  • After completing the Program Information Request above our Lead Academic Coordinator, will be in touch to assist you in connecting with potential faculty advisors.
  • If you believe you may be in need of an application fee waiver, please complete this Department of Nutrition PhD Application Scholarship/Waiver form (this link will open in a new tab) and we will be in touch with you shortly

Schedule a Visit

Please attend one of our events:

If you are interested in visiting the Department of Nutrition, please contact our academic coordinator, Jonathan Earnest, at earnestj@email.unc.edu. To explore campus tour opportunities, visit this site  or email uncvisitorscenter@unc.edu.

Need More Information?

Still Have Questions?

For more information, please contact your academic coordinator.