The purpose of this study was to provide a historical reference on the origin, development, and objectives of the School of Nutrition and Dietetics from the beginning of the first dietetic program in 1908 to that of the present.

Three methods were employed in this study: the historical, interview, and questionnaire. The main historical source material was obtained from the Historical Records Office in the Library of Loma Linda University. The material consisted of selected letters of the administrators of the College and leaders in the dietetic programs. There is a greater amount of board minutes, annual bulletins, and documents. Additional source material was obtained from the files of the School of Nutrition and Dietetics, Loma Linda University. Interviews were held with leading administrators of the dietetic programs through the years. A questionnaire was designed and mailed to the graduates of the dietetic programs from 1922-1962. Responses received formed a basis for evaluation of the contributions of the graduates.

The principal factor contributing to the establishment of a dietetic program by the College of Medical Evangelists was the desire to fill the existing need for individuals trained in principles of healthful diet and cookery to serve in denominational sanitariums and hospitals. This concept broadened and expanded to the wide area of service in which dietitians are currently in demand.

The enrollment has varied with the years and with various programs offered. Twenty are currently enrolled in the graduate program with a steady trend upward. Fifty-two per cent of the currently employed graduates from 1922-1962 are engaged in Seventh-day Adventist denominational employment. A study made in 1962 showed that 75 per cent of the graduates of the graduate dietetic program from 1956-1962 are employed in the denomination. Although the dietetic programs throughout the years have ably served the purpose for which they were established, the existing demand for trained dietitians is greater than the supply.

The School has developed in keeping with trends in the dietetic profession. It progressed from the original one year course to a two, a three, and then a four-year program granting the B.S. degree. It sought to establish itself in keeping with American Dietetic Association requirements.

An internship program was planned in 1938 to provide training which would not pose a Sabbath work problem to Seventh-day Adventist youth as would be experienced in outside institutions. It would also provide the desired social environment and training in health principles peculiar to the Seventh-day Adventist denomination. The internship existed until 1951 at which time it was discontinued temporarily because approval was not granted by the American Dietetic Association. Its chief weakness lay in the area of administration.

A graduate dietetic program was begun in the fall of 1956 which is in operation at the present. It consists of an American Dietetic Association approved internship and a master's degree program. The progress is upward, built upon that which has gone before.


Graduate School

First Advisor

Ruth Little

Second Advisor

Jennie Stagg Hudson

Third Advisor

Pearl Jenkins

Fourth Advisor

Esther Lofgren Gardner

Fifth Advisor

Keld J. Reynolds

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Level


Year Degree Awarded


Date (Title Page)




Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings

Dietetics -- education



Page Count

ix; 124

Digital Format


Digital Publisher

Loma Linda University Libraries

Usage Rights

This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.


Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations

Collection Website



Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives