Articles, Blog

Influence August 2019

(upbeat music) – Welcome to Influence, the show about one of the
University’s founding colleges, the College of Agriculture
and Life Sciences. I’m your host, Emily Shaw. On today’s episode we’re going
to be learning more about the Food Science Nutrition
and Health Promotion major, specifically talking
about the concentrations of Food Science Business
Processing and Technology. Our first guest is Doctor Wes Schilling, a professor in the department of Food Science Nutrition
and Health Promotion. Welcome Dr. Schilling. – Thank you Ms. Shaw.
It’s great to be here. I appreciate you having me on. We have some great
concentrations in food science, one of which the most common
is food processing business, where our students get
trained in food science, so they’re trained to go
work in the food industry. – [Emily] Okay. – But they also do business classes. We recommend them
getting a minor in either business administration or Ag-Business. They go into technical sales or other types of jobs like that. It’s really great because
no matter where you go work, business usually drives the bus. If you have some background
in business it’s very helpful. – Makes sense. – We have a food-science concentration, which is geared more to
the students that want to go to grad school. Those are students who
would be more in the lab, but they’re the ones solving
problems in the food industry, such as food safety issues
and food quality issues and learning how to do
product development type work and understanding a
little bit of research. Then we have a pre-health concentration, which is very important
because a lot of our problems, as far as health goes, in today’s society has to do with food. We need people in the medical
field that have training in food science, training in health, and training in nutrition, so that’s one of our
newest concentrations. One of the great things about that is there are more job
opportunities and more jobs than we have students, so if you go into a
concentration like that then you’re gonna get a job opportunity, even if you decide you
don’t want to be a Doctor, Physician Assistant,
Physical Therapy, or Dentist, or any of those things. It’s really great because
it’s almost fool proof. – Absolutely. – Then our last, we do have food safety, which is Pre-Vet. In general, we only have
one or two at a time. They usually get into Vet School, as long as they get their hours and have the required grade point average because there’s not much competition when they’re coming from
a food-animal background and there’s only one or two of them. It’s also a good way to
go and get into Vet School and meet the requirements. Our last, which seems to have
the most interest by students, which is probably ’cause they
think it’s such a cool name, is Cullinology, which is
actually a joint program between MSU and MUW. Students come in and they
take food science classes and it’s similar to food
processing business, except they’re actually
taking culinary arts classes where they would take
the business classes. They’re trained in order to
be able to make the products that you might get at a restaurant that all the people did in
the back was heat it up, but it still tastes like
grandma made it in the kitchen even though there wasn’t
much prep in the back. – Okay, very exciting. Do each of those concentrations
require and internship or some sort of experiential learning? – They do. They require
six credits of internship. In general, we recommend
that they go get those in the food industry. That would be two summers of internship. What we found is that the
people that hire our students, they want students with
real work experience, so if they get some experience
in the food industry, they’ve got a leg-up. All of them have six credits, depending on what a student wants to do, we might let them work in a research lab for three of those credits, work in the dairy plant
for three of those credits. There’s different options
depending on the student to be flexible, but we do want them to
have real world experience so they can apply what they’ve
learned in the classroom. – Absolutely. Do they typically do
two unique experiences over those two different summers? – They usually do. Not all
of them, but they usually do. We’ve had some students
go and work for Newlyweds during the summer, which
is a spice company. They would go do that. Another company, they might go down to Reed-Food Technology in Jackson, which is Reed-Food’s one
of our biggest supporters in the department. We had someone go to Pico
Foods this last summer. Really it depends on the
opportunities that are out there and we’re always looking for
companies to partner with us so that we can meet their needs
by developing the students that will actually meet
their needs upon graduation. If we can get a student to intern there, it’s almost like becoming a
job interview for a semester or a summer. – Excellent. What do you
think is the biggest draw for undergraduate program? – I think the biggest draw is
the fact that there’s jobs. With the way the population is growing, there’s gonna be a huge
population by 2050, so food scientists, they’re
gonna need more of them, not fewer. There’s always going to be jobs. What I tell students, get a 3-0, get involved in the
department, get internships, and you’ll have more job opportunities than you’ll be able to accept. – Nice. – Which is good. – Well, thank you Dr.
Schilling for sharing those concentration information with us. – Oh you’re welcome,
it’s awesome to be here. – When we come back, we’ll hear from a student
in the graduate program. (door creaking) – Think you know it? (upbeat music) Think again. (upbeat music) – We are creative. – We protect the environment. – We prepare for careers in
medicine and conduct research. – We empower people and communities. (balls dribbling) – We are technology driven. – And we feed and clothe the world. – We are the College of
Agriculture and Live Sciences at Mississippi State University. (upbeat music) – Welcome back to Influence. Our next guest is a graduate
student in the Department of Food Science Nutrition
and Health Promotion, Ms. Jasmine Hendrix Welcome Jasmine. – Thank you Emily. – You’ve been with us at
MSU for a little bit now, but you had a unique
toward your PhD program, tell us about that. – Alrighty, so come from
a family of bulldogs, so we grew up right here in Starkville, started my career here in 2009, where I joined the summer bridge program. I actually was joining Mississippi State as a Chemical Engineer major. Had a thought that I was
gonna go into food processing, so I wanted to utilize my
math and science skills and apply that into
the food science world. I ended up pursuing
chemical engineering first to get that design background. After finishing my
coursework and internships, some co-ops involved in there, I finished there in about 2015. Then I ended up transitioning, well I took a semester
off of academic work and I went into the micro-lab at the food science department. There I was working with
Dr. Kim and Dr. Sova there. We got some experience
in the food micro world. Then I knew my heart was
tugging for something different, so then that’s when I
found my professor now, Dr. Wes Schilling. He introduced me to some
various industry projects within his lab group and
I’ve been there ever since. Where I started my Masters Program, working with some dry-cured ham products and making sure that they were
safe from different pests. Also, once I finished that program, he welcomed me and asked me
to join to do a PhD with him. It’s been a journey
over the past few years, but I’ve been here for quite some time. Mississippi State is home and it’s heart. I’ve been enjoying my time here in the food science department so far. – Excellent. So I understand
that you’re gonna vary just a little bit more during your PhD and you’re gonna pull in
one of our other departments for a little expertise. Tell us about your
direction moving forward with your research and the development of what you’re trying to achieve. – Come from a family of educators, so both parents were in education. That inkling was there,
so I wanted to say, “Well, how can I take my passion, “mix it with my knowledge in food science “and develop a career out of it?” First, starting looking
at my research project, I went to talk to Dr. Schilling and asked, “How can we get food science out? “How can we educate more
people about food science?” I started to talk with him about that and he told me about a curriculum that the Research Curriculum Unit
here at Mississippi State, along with some Ag teachers
and faculty in our department, has developed and they pretty much outline a full high school curriculum. What a great opportunity
it would be to promote food science in high school, so I ended up starting my research and looking at how to develop lesson plans and different tools that teachers can use to promote food science in high school. I ended up getting that curriculum and Dr. Schilling has
allowed me to run with that. We have great support from the College of Human Sciences, where we have Dr. Downey
and Dr. Jagger on our team. They’re advising us on how to explore curriculum development
and training teachers to implement this material. We’ve had the opportunity
to link up with the Research Curriculum Unit
and train about 40 teachers in Jackson this summer. We had them there where we
exposed them to the curriculum, showed them some of our
lessons and our activities and they actually want
to implement this fall. We’re working on getting material
and our tool kit together to get that information out
into the school systems. Hopefully with this information
in our research project, we can collect data to say, “Hey this curriculum is
important. It’s great use. “It’s gonna make a great
impact in our schools.” Hopefully we can get
food science curriculum throughout our schools in
Mississippi starting off. – [Emily] That would be excellent. – Yes ma’am. – Well, give us an
example of a lesson plan that students might find really fun. – One of the things that we
think is super exciting is talking about the
science behind ice cream. We end up making ice cream in a bag. We’ll be teaching the principles
of the different components that’s found in milk. Some of the proteins then
also the cream that you mix along with sugar. We teach how those
compounds mix together and the emulsion that’s made
in order to create a nice, creamy ice cream, which we need since it’s so hot this summer. We get to teach the chemistry behind it, but they get to learn the hands on aspects of how you make ice cream. As well we involved a lot
of product development principles in there, so they get to see how to take an idea and create a full product out of that. That’s from deciding
what they’re gonna make as well as deploying it into the market. They get an array of
food science principles through this lesson. – Excellent. I’m exciting to hear that
our information will reach students at a new level. – Yes ma’am. – Thank you for your work in that and thank you for being
on the show with us today. – Yes ma’am. – Thank you for joining us on Influence where on today’s episode we learned about Food Science and Technology. We’ll see you next time. (upbeat music)

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *