20 Years Later, a Nurse Returns to School for an MS in Nutritional Sciences

Angie, a former registered nurse, never thought she would go back to school. After graduating with her nursing degree over 20 years ago, she started looking into pursuing a nutrition degree program, but felt intimidated. Despite the nerves, Angie took a leap of faith and enrolled in the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) Master’s Degree in Nutritional Sciences, following the biochemical and functional nutrition pathway. Today, she calls the program “life-changing.”

How was your experience learning online?

I absolutely loved the Master’s in Nutritional Sciences (MSNS) program. Even though the program was 100% online, I always felt completely supported by the faculty. Whenever I had a question, I was invited to email and often received a response within an hour, even on the weekends. They also held virtual office hours as well as invited me to schedule 1:1 time throughout the week, as needed, whenever support was desired.

How has your learning impacted your career, life, or community?

I was extremely impressed with each and every course in the MSNS program. One of the reasons that I had selected this program over others was because of the biochemical and functional pathway, and I was not disappointed. Each course was presented with relevant content in a digestible format, with opportunities for review to reinforce concepts as well as additional learning if desired. I was honestly sad to finish this program because I enjoyed the content so much. I am now pursuing the Certified Clinical Nutrition (CCN) and supporting a board-certified gastroenterologist in his research, preparation for lectures and podcasts, and other related endeavors. More importantly, I now have a foundation that supports my desire to continue being a life-long learner in the field of nutrition, and that will serve as a credible foundation as I begin to explore other ways to incorporate my education into new opportunities.

What advice would you give new edX students?

If this program has sparked your interest, take the leap of faith to follow your intuition! I enrolled as an older student after more than 20 years since graduating with my undergrad in nursing. It was honestly a bit intimidating to think about returning to school after such a length of time and required a huge leap of faith. But I have zero regrets. It was 100% worth my time and financial investment.

Anything else you'd like to share about your experience?

I cannot stress enough that UT Austin has put together a phenomenal, life-changing MSNS online program. The faculty have truly succeeded in creating a quality learning experience that rivals in-residence programs with the ease and flexibility of an online format. During the program, I felt 100% supported by the faculty for any needs and felt that they truly cared and were invested in my educational growth and interests. While there were multiple other programs offered through traditional campus settings and other online universities, I am certain that there are none that can compare to UT Austin.

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