This curriculum deals with all aspects of the food industry—both theoretical and practical—from producing raw materials through processing and packaging to marketing finished foods. The curriculum balances fundamental principles and practical applications of food science within a flexible program that permits students to tailor education to personal career goals. Students choose between two options, science or food business and operations management for their degree. The program is certified by the Institute of Food Technologists.
Scholarships are available through the Institute of Food Technologists and the College of Agriculture. Incoming freshmen should contact the food science chair in November– December for IFT scholarship forms.
Graduates are needed to manage and supervise sophisticated food manufacturing industries that produce poultry, fresh and processed meat, dairy products, bakery goods, frozen and canned fruits and vegetables, confections, and snack foods. Job placement and starting salaries have been excellent.
Imaginative and well-trained people are needed in research and product development to create new and innovative products and processes. Some graduates work with producers to improve the quality of raw materials. Persons trained in HACCP and food safety, microbiology, quality assurance, and sensory analysis are needed to help food processors meet more stringent consumer and government requirements. Others are involved in selling, merchandising, advertising, or managing food operations. Government regulatory agencies also hire food scientists to assure public health, nutrition, and food labeling. If students have foreign language capabilities, international food industry jobs are available.
Very important to the student’s course of study is the flexibility of professional electives that the student selects by consultation with their academic advisor. This gives the student an opportunity to design a personalized, well-rounded curriculum. Often students can obtain a minor in such areas as business, cereal chemistry, economics, agribusiness, agricultural technology management, and leadership just by careful selection of required minor courses.
The nature of the courses required in this curriculum is very compatible with course requirements of students interested in pre-veterinary medicine and other pre-professional curriculums such as medicine, dentistry, pharmacy, and nursing. A BS in food science provides excellent training for these students and offers them other job opportunities if needed.