RN vs. RD


Hello everyone! I am a student in the process of deciding between an undergrad degree in either nursing or dietetics.

I love nutrition and preventative health, and am interested in a graduate public health education to tie this together. Nursing is appealing to me as clinical skills are gained, salary is higher than for RDs, and it is easier for RNs to switch focuses and climb ranks. I also enjoy the hospital setting (have volunteered in healthcare & shadowed nurses in ED).

If anyone has experience with being both an RN & RD, switching from RD to RN or vice versa, or is an RN with a public health emphasis, I would especially appreciate hearing your thoughts about why you chose your career path and what educational move you think may be best, in terms of job security, personal satisfaction, and any other factors.

Also...how would all of you describe the nursing field in general? Characteristics someone should have to be a good RN? Has finding a job ever been an issue? Best & worst aspects of the profession (and do the good aspects make up for the bad ones)? Do you encounter much nutrition in nursing? Any advice for the potential nursing student would be so appreciated. :)

Thanks so much for your time!


2 Posts

This is a great question. You should interview persons from both professions. I am a career changer that was licensed in all three areas of your interest. That is I was an RD, got an MPH. Then I returned in a nursing grad entry program completing an MSN and finally an FNP training track.

RDs have more responsibility with better salaries now but many do cross train. You would have to ask them why as individuals.

If you would like to correspond more, I am at kheffe50@gmail.com.

As my career comes to a close, I want to wish all persons like you good luck. Health care needs many types of professionals and they are all productive... Good Luck.