Carol Beier, M.S.
Retired-Director, Didactic Program in Dietetics
Carol Beier grew up in Manhattan, Kansas, a small town formed by settlers in the 1850s and named for the New York financiers of a group of settlers coming from Ohio. She met her husband while they were both studying at Kansas State University. Her degree was in biology, his in mechanical engineering.
In the following years, Ms. Beier and her husband moved a lot for his career and Ms. Beier made opportunities for herself in each new place. She earned a Master’s degree in Food and Nutrition/Dietetics from the University of Nebraska, and then moved to Massachusetts where she sat for her registration exam. She held jobs as food service director at a Lutheran Church, a clinical dietitian at Massachusetts General Hospital (1982-1983), and an outpatient dietitian.
Balancing Family and Career
During those years, she raised several children, putting her career on hold for 10 years. She became an active organizer of many community groups like the Parent Teacher Association. Back in Oklahoma for the 4th time, Ms. Beier was volunteering when an opportunity came up to direct the dietetics program in the Nutrition Sciences Department of Oklahoma State University. Ten years later, she oversees 600 health students of whom about 135 are dietetics and 300 are allied health students. Ms. Beier experienced the challenges of developing a career while moving for a spouse’s job, raising children and changing jobs. Dietetics has been a good career for her because it provided the stimulation and flexibility she needed.
Advice for Others
“After years of working closely with students, her advice includes “you have to love chemistry” to become a dietitian. Keep your grades over 3.5 and do something that makes you stand out to be competitive for a dietetic internship. If you are thinking about staying home with your children – beware, many women ‘lose confidence.’ Keep involved professionally to avoid that pitfall.”