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Career and Education Opportunities for Dietary Technicians in Las Cruces, New Mexico

Dietary technician career and educational opportunities abound in Las Cruces, New Mexico. There are currently 280 working dietary technicians in New Mexico; this should grow by 16% to 330 working dietary technicians in the state by 2016. This is better than the national trend for dietary technicians, which sees this job pool growing by about 13.9% over the next eight years. In general, dietary technicians assist dietitians in the provision of food service and nutritional programs.

The income of a dietary technician is about $11 per hour or $23,380 per year on average in New Mexico. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $12 per hour or $26,080 annually on average. Earnings for dietary technicians are not quite as good as earnings in the general category of Diet in New Mexico and not quite as good as general Diet category earnings nationally. Dietary technicians work in a variety of jobs, including: dietary cook, nutrition counselor, and diet clerk.

The Las Cruces area is home to six schools of higher education, including one within twenty-five miles of Las Cruces where you can get a degree as a dietary technician. The most common level of education for dietary technicians is less than a high school diploma. It will take only a short time to learn to be a dietary technician if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Dietary Technician

Dietary Technician video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, dietary technicians assist dietitians in the provision of food service and nutritional programs. They also under the supervision of dietitians, may plan and produce meals based on established guidelines, teach principles of food and nutrition, or counsel individuals.

Dietary technicians analyze menus and recipes, standardize recipes and test new products. Finally, dietary technicians observe food intake of patients and report progress and dietary problems to dieticians.

Every day, dietary technicians are expected to be able to listen to and understand others in meetings. They need to articulate ideas and problems. It is also important that they organize information in a variety of ways.

It is important for dietary technicians to obtain and evaluate dietary histories of individuals to develop nutritional programs. They are often called upon to ready a major meal, following recipes and determining group food quantities. They also formulate menus and diets or guide individuals and families in food selection and menu planning, based upon nutritional needs and established guidelines. They are sometimes expected to supervise food production and service, or assist dietitians and nutritionists in food service supervision and planning. Somewhat less frequently, dietary technicians are also expected to decide on and conduct orientation and in-service education programs.

They also have to be able to design job specifications and work schedules and deliver speeches on diet, nutrition and health to promote healthy eating habits and illness prevention and treatment. And finally, they sometimes have to furnish dietitians with assistance researching food, nutrition and food service systems.

Like many other jobs, dietary technicians must be reliable and be thorough and dependable.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Las Cruces include:

  • Dietician. Plan and conduct food service or nutritional programs to assist in the promotion of health and control of disease. May supervise activities of a department providing quantity food services, counsel individuals, or conduct nutritional research.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Dietary Technician Training

New Mexico State University-Main Campus - Las Cruces, NM

New Mexico State University-Main Campus, 2850 Weddell Street, Las Cruces, NM 88003-8001. New Mexico State University-Main Campus is a large university located in Las Cruces, New Mexico. It is a public school with primarily 4-year or above programs. It has 17,198 students and an admission rate of 61%. New Mexico State University-Main Campus has a bachelor's degree program in Foods, Nutrition, and Wellness Studies which graduated fifteen students in 2008.


Certified Correctional Foodservice Professional: A key purpose of the Certified Correctional Foodservice Professional certification is to develop the highest standards in.

For more information, see the American Correctional Food Service Association website.


Las Cruces, New Mexico
Las Cruces, New Mexico photo by Yassie

Las Cruces is situated in Dona Ana County, New Mexico. It has a population of over 91,865, which has grown by 23.7% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Las Cruces, 89, is well below the national average. New single-family homes in Las Cruces are valued at $133,900 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, six hundred thirty-two new homes were built in Las Cruces, down from nine hundred eighty the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Las Cruces are educational services, health care, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is educational services, public administration, and construction. The average commute to work is about 18 minutes. More than 28.4% of Las Cruces residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 12.1%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Las Cruces is 5.6%, which is less than New Mexico's average of 7.5%.

The percentage of Las Cruces residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 77.3%, is more than both the national and state average. Mesilla Park Baptist Church, Greater Saint John Church of God in Christ and Valley View Baptist Church are among the churches located in Las Cruces. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the Southern Baptist Convention and the United Methodist Church.

Las Cruces is home to the Mesquite Street Original Townsite Historic District and the Walden Hall as well as Frenger Park and Preciado Park. Visitors to Las Cruces can choose from Scoggin Blue LLC, SpringHill Suites Las Cruces and Villa Del Telshor Apartments & Corporate Suites for temporary stays in the area.