To be perfectly honest, I don t know. I know it hasn t worked out for me. I ve got an M. S. in agribusiness, plus two years of lab courses. Most departments list a few lab courses as prerequisites usually general biology, microbiology, general chemistry, organic chemistry, biochemistry, physics, and (non-lab courses) nutrition, statistics, and introduction to calculus. A few programs ask for more (e. g. UC Davis asks for 1 semester of physical chemistry, and I think UMass asks for 1 semester of analytic chemistry). However, apparently taking (or even exceeding) prerequisite requirements may not actually result in strong consideration for admission. Also, it appears that strongly specific vocational focus appears to be sought after. The graduate programs don t appear to be terribly interested in students who are pursuing a general interest and related skill-set, but rather students who have a highly-delineated interest and outcome focus (e. g. dairy product rheology, food allergen molecule characterization, prediction modelling of L. monocytogenes outbreaks) to which they have already devoted significant energies. It s possible that if you don t have at least some prior exposure to the field, you may not get a look in (hence, a chicken-and-egg scenario for the uninitiated).
Such a transition might work better if you were to go back and take an additional undergraduate degree in food science or possibly one of the underpinning lab sciences (e. g. chemistry, microbiology, or biochemistry). Most people can t afford to do this, however, in terms of either time or money. It does seem to result in increased opportunities and better overall orientations to the profession(s) plus you won t be an outcast relative to IFT, which really doesn t want to extend membership to aspiring food scientists not enrolled in food science programs. However, you will want to think *very, very hard* about the risks of taking a degree in either chemistry or microbiology in the current employment climate should food science not pan out. It might also work better if you apply to programs that have closer animal science/agriculture/food science connections but you run the risk here of essentially digging deeper into your original degree area and not expanding your skill-set or post-grad employment options. This might, however, be a reasonable option if you wanted to focus on a particular animal food industry segment (e. g. poultry, meat production, possibly dairy) in which you have already begun studies, and feel confident of job opportunities in said specialty.
As to why food science graduate program admissions are what they are today, my first hypothesis is that the food science grad market currently is so competitive (high applicant numbers relative to slots available as indicated by UWisconsin-Madison s publicly available application/admission numbers from the past few years) that most programs select only candidates with the appropriate background meaning an undergraduate degree in food science or one of the feeder lab sciences and with some relevant lab work experience. My second hypothesis is that depending on the institution, and owing to several reasons, research and institutional dollars are drying up some programs will in fact not admit applicants without grant support. My third hypothesis is that increasingly food science is adopting widespread industry practices in student intake, and this has impacts on student selection.
Maybe you are interested in healthy eating, want to know why popcorn pops, or just love great tasting food. Whatever your taste may be, presumably you have come to this page to look at studying food in finer detail.
If youвre still unsure whether Food Science could be the degree for you, these reasons may give you just the push you need: 1. Diversity There is a plethora of different professions Food Science graduates can enter into. The food industry is one of the largest across the globe в everyone has to eat every single day в thus there will always be jobs available. Skills can be utilised for many different aspects of the food world, with jobs in marketing, teaching, safety, quality management, nutrition, sales, teaching and many, many more. Check out the subject table to. 2. Study abroad Be involved with the global industry, and the travel opportunities are endless. Students can expect many courses to offer study abroad placements or even years in industry. This not only allows students to truly immerse themselves in the professional world of food, but also to enjoy living in a completely new area. Imagine being sent to Italy в the pasta and pizza capital of the world в and working with food there! 3. Develop numerous skills Food Science students will not only learn specific technical skills that they can apply directly to their work, but also a multitude of transferrable skills.
From problem-solving to numerical skills, data analytical skills to В IT knowledge, students can be assured they will not be limited in their abilities to pursue a career in the wider world after graduating. Use course chooser to. 4. Good graduate and starting salary prospects Many companies have great graduate schemes in place for those with Food Science degrees. If students are not yet ready to leave education after their undergraduate degree, then the availability for further study is widely available. Specialise in areas such as dietetics, biomedical science or environmental management. Find out more about. 5. Creativity and excitement With countless amount of ingredients all around the world, the possibilities of what new products you can make are endless. This is an exciting and dynamic area of study and work; in many job roles you wonвt know what is waiting around the corner. 6. Earning power The food industry is immense, and if students secure a managerial role, or work for a large and successful company, there is a strong potential of earning big money! 7. Youвll be working with food Need we say more?