SIT introduces dietetics degree to meet demand
Demand for dietitians in Singapore has grown significantly with the ageing population here increasing.
Citing Ministry of Health figures, the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) said from 2010 to 2015, the demand for dietitians in acute care increased 56 per cent.
To meet the need, SIT is introducing a new four-year dietetics and nutrition degree programme.
Currently, students have to go abroad, or enrol in local private educational institutes, to earn a recognised dietetics academic qualification.
Professor Loh Han Tong, SIT's deputy president (academic) and provost, said: "Students will develop skills to be critical thinkers and have opportunities to learn alongside dietitians who are active practitioners in real-life clinical settings... graduates will be well prepared for the role of an entry-level professional dietitian."
The programme - developed in consultation with chief dietitians from the National University Health System, National Healthcare Group and Singapore Health Services - will see students undergo a 32-week clinical practice education with various public and private healthcare institutions throughout their curriculum.
Dr Lim Su Lin, chief dietitian and senior assistant director of the dietetics department at the National University Hospital, said dietitians are key members of a hospital's multidisciplinary healthcare team.
"They assess patients and implement specific nutritional interventions in relation to their medical conditions," she added.
Besides the degree in dietetics, SIT will be introducing a three-year air transport management programme to help meet manpower demand in the expanding aviation industry. This comes alongside the development of Changi Airport's new terminals 4 and 5.
The course curriculum - developed in partnership with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore and aviation companies - will cover operations, management and business aspects of the air transport industry.
Both programmes are for academic year 2019/2020 and start next September.