University of Missouri - Columbia Graduate Programs in Food Science

Graduate Program Director: Dr. Azlin Mustapha

Contact: Dr. Azlin Mustapha (, Director of Graduate Studies, Department of Food Science, University of Missouri, 256 William Stringer Wing, Columbia, MO 65211-5160

Degrees Offered: Masters and Doctoral degrees in Food Science

Associated Fields and Departments: Program is interdisciplinary with Food Microbiology and Analytical Chemistry, Biological Engineering, Chemical Engineering, and Nutrition.


Program Description

Entrance Requirements: TOEFL 550 (paper based) or 213 (computer based) or 5.5 IELTS, or above; 3 letters of recommendation; undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above; OFFICIAL copies of transcripts; written statement of purpose for graduate study; GRE scores (Verbal + Quantitative should total 1000 with neither one being below 400; 3.5 or higher on the Analytical Writing Assessment Section).

Programs of Study: The Food Science Program offers programs of study leading to the M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Food Science. Because of the multidisciplinary nature of Food Science, the program is composed of three broad basic areas of specialization: chemistry, microbiology, and process engineering.
The program is designed to prepare individuals for technically based careers in the food industries. Many graduates enter industrial positions; however, excellent opportunities also exist in academia and in government agencies. International opportunities are abundant. Specific job situations include basic research, product development, process engineering, technical sales, quality assurance, and teaching.

Graduate Requirements: M.S. requires a minimum of 30 credits and Ph.D. requires a minimum of 72 hours beyond the bachelor’s degree; must author a thesis/dissertation, and a manuscript to be published in a refereed journal.

Cost of Study: Currently, tuition and fees for the University of Missouri-Columbia are $$298.70 per credit hour for Missouri residents and $771.20 per credit hour for non-residents. All students pay Student Activities Fees ($270) and Information Technology Fee ($12.20 per credit hour). Full-time students must pay Student Health Fees ($92.78 per semester).

Financial Aid: Research (GRA) and teaching (GTA) assistantships, competitive fellowships, and tuition waivers are available. Assistantships are part-time positions with the University, and appointments are made for a percentage of full-time employment, ranging from 25 to 50 percent per year. Travel grants are available to students to present papers at scientific meetings. As of Fall 2008 the GRA stipends were MS $13,367.70 (½ time) and PhD $15,098.62 (½ time) per year. GTA stipends are 9-month instead of 12-month appointments. GRA and GTA stipends include a tuition fee waiver.

Research Facilities: Program facilities are housed in approximately 50,000 square feet of laboratory and office space containing fully equipped biochemistry, chemistry, microbiology, molecular biology, fermentation, sensory science and engineering laboratories and dairy and meat processing pilot plants. Standard equipment includes high-performance liquid and gas chromatographs, various electrophoretic systems, spectrophotometers, specialized hoods, ultracentrifuges, Baker twin-screw extruder, Insta-Pro 2000R extruder, texture analyzer, controlled stress rheometer, controlled rate viscometer, delta series thermal analyzer and a Hunter D25L colorimeter. Students may also have access to electron microscopes, mass spectrometers, image analysis equipment, molecular biology facilities, a nuclear reactor, and other specialized facilities in the University.

Applying: Applications should be received by April 1 to be considered for assistantship support for the subsequent Fall semester. While spring admissions are granted, assistantship support is usually more readily available for fall admission. Applicants must have an average of B or better in science (chemistry, physics, mathematics, and biology) from an accredited institution and must provide scores on the General Test of the Graduate Record Examinations BEFORE your application will be considered for acceptance. TOEFL scores are required for international students along with the GRE scores.

Faculty Research Interests

Seonghee Cho, Ph.D., University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Measuring the impact of human resources on organizational performance, revenue management, and activity-based accounting. 223 Eckles Hall. 573/882-0563.

Andrew Clarke, Ph.D., Colorado State University. Meat processing technology, with emphasis on restructured or low-fat meat products, supercritical fluid extraction and meat extrusion. 256 William C. Stringer Wing. 573/882-2610.

Mark Ellersieck, Ph.D., University of Missouri. Statistical application in agricultural research.  146 Middlebush. 573/884-6584

Janelle Elmore, Ph.D., University of Missouri. Food Science Adjunct Assistant Professor. Sensory science with a focus on research methods for consumer and product insights. 256 William Stringer Wing. 573/882-4113.

James L. Groves, Ph.D., Kansas State University. Hospitality human resource management, employee turnover and retention issues, hospitality curriculum development, and issues involving service employees. 118 Eckles Hall. 573/884-7816.

Ingolf Gruen, Ph.D., Virginia Tech. Undergraduate Advisor Chair. Analytical chemistry with applications in food composition, flavor chemistry and the influence of food ingredients on quality attributes of foods. 256 William C. Stringer Wing. 573/882-6746.

Fu-Hung Hsieh, Ph.D., University of Minnesota. Food engineering, food processing and preservation, food extrusion, process design and development. 248 Agricultural Engineering Building. 573/882-2444.

Johye Hwang, Ph.D., The Pennsylvania State University.  Service Operations Management: capacity and demand management, revenue management, waiting time management, service quality management, application of simulation; Consumer Behavior: customer motivation, perception, attitude and satisfaction, service quality expectation, food acceptance and purchasing behavior, nutrition marketing in restaurants, effective nutrition labeling, customer seating behavior and table management, servicescape (restaurant layout and design). 220 Eckles Hall. 573/884-6184.

Dae-Young Kim, Ph.D., Purdue University. Hospitality and Tourism marketing/ Information Technology/ Convention and Meeting Management. 219 Eckles Hall. 573-884-7185.

Marco Li Calzi, Ph.D., Mario Negri Institute, Milano, Italy. Chemical and aroma profiles of winegrapes during maturation. 256 William Stringer Wing.

Mengshi Lin, Ph.D., Washington State University. Establishing novel instrumental methods for the characterization of safety and quality attributes of agricultural and food products. 256 William C. Stringer Wing. 573/884-6718.

Azlin Mustapha, Ph.D., University of Nebraska. Director of Graduate Studies. Food Microbiology, molecular detection of foodborne pathogens, use of novel antimicrobials in foods and development of probiotic foods. 256 William C. Stringer Wing. 573/882-2649.

Lillian Occeña-Po, Ph.D., Michigan State University. Food Science Adjunct Associate Professor. Ethnic food safety and food establishments. 256 William Stringer Wing. 573/882-4113.

James W. Perfield II, Ph.D., Cornell University. Nutrition and the physiology of metabolic disease with an emphasis on obesity and diabetes. 223 Eckles Hall. 573/882-5085.

Keith Striegler, Ph.D., Michigan State University. Cultivar Evaluation, Rootstock Evaluation, Vineyard Mechanization, Sustainable Viticulture Production Systems, Influence of Cultural Practices on Grape and Wine Composition. 108 Eckles. 573/882-6681

Jinglu Tan, Ph.D., University of Minnesota. Research on food process control and automation, computer vision development for food quality evaluation. 215 Agricultural Engineering Building. 573/882-7778.