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 three options, science, food business and operations management or technology for their degree.
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 evaluation 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 restricted 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.