Midnight Snack: March 2013 Official Newsletter of the IFT Student Association


Head Chef: A Letter from our President


 CaelHello Fellow Foodies!

Spring time is here, the weather is heating up (at least for some of us), and the IFTSA area meetings are in full swing.  This year we are changing things up a bit, with the goal of better communicating all of the happenings across IFT and IFTSA to our membership. 

During your upcoming meeting, you will look at the future of area meetings in your region by discussing the new “IFTSA Area Meeting Host Protocol.” This document highlights best practices for hosting a meeting and will help you determine whether your area would like to use a rotation schedule or not moving forward.

This time of year is also crunch time for the IFTSA competitions.  A few weeks ago at the IFT Wellness13 Conference, after some fun winter traveling adventures, IFTSA crowned its first champion of the year. The University of Arkansas won the 2013 IFTSA Heart Healthy Product Development Competition sponsored by CanolaInfo with their product Simply Heart.

Remember to mark your calendars for the IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo® in Chicago, Illinois, July 13-16. We will have some new changes to the schedule for this year’s meeting, so stay tuned for an announcement shortly.

I wish everyone a successful spring. Good luck to all of the College Bowl teams at your area meetings, as well as all of the competition teams who are working on final proposals.  I look forward to seeing everyone this summer in Chicago.

- Matt

Expiration Dates: Announcements & Deadlines


The IFTSA election ended on March 15, 2013.  We appreciate the participation of all who voted.  Your 2013-2014 officers are below.  Congratulations to all.

2013-2014 IFTSA Elected Officers




Jonathan Baugher

North Carolina State University


Jay Gilbert

University of Massachusetts

Past President

Matt Cael

Louisiana State University

Central Atlantic Representative

Andrea Gilbert

University of Maryland, College Park

Midwest Area Representative

Marion Harness

University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Mountain West Area Representative 

Marie-Julie Richer-Roy 

California State U. Los Angeles

North Atlantic Area Representative

Victoria Sbrogna

University of Massachusetts Amherst

North Central Area Representative

Chelsey Timm

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Pacific West Area Representative

Allison Baker

Washington State University

South Central Area Representative

Alex Brandt

Texas Tech University

Southeast Area Representative

Shantrell Renee Willis

Alabama A & M University

The annual Heart Healthy Competition took place at Wellness13 in Chicago last month. Congratulations to the first place team, Alexandria Huck and Quyen Nguyen from the University of Arkansas, with their innovative product Simply Heart, a heart-healthy breakfast bar. Congratulations are also extended to the other finalist teams for their hard work: Rutgers University with Herbilicious Crisps (2nd) and Iowa State University with SmHeart Bites (3rd).

I hope your chapter has been having an awesome year full of fun activities, educational opportunities, and good food! Don’t forget to submit your Chapter of the Year Application by May 1st to iftsa.coy@gmail.com


Registration for the IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo has officially started, so make sure to register before May 31st and pay only $75 for your student registration (a $50 savings!). This event is a one-stop-shop for the food science world and has a plethora of opportunities for students: Fun Run, Career Center Live, IFTCares volunteering, networking opportunities, College Bowl, insight into trends and new products, and so much more!


Check out these interesting posts over on the official IFTSA blog, Science Meets Food, and let us know what you think.
Freshness, It’s What’s for Dinner
Free Short Courses!
It’s Driving Me Crazy!
Sensory Testing in Action

North Carolina State University

Local Flare: Chapter & Club News
North Carolina State University
NC State has hosted a number of club meetings featuring companies like Mount Olive Pickle Co., Nomocorc, and TIC Gums. The club also ran several booths at a big outreach event, Science of Eats, hosted by a local museum. Club social events have included a ski trip to Snowshoe, WV and a group outing to a Hurricanes hockey game (43 club members in attendance!).
University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

The Food Science and Human Nutrition Graduate Association (FSHNGSA) held two highly attended events called the Pioneer Seminar Series where department professors presented research.  Other fun activities included dinner, learning how to construct quality CV’s, and a Valentine’s Day bake sale.
University of Minnesota

The U of MN Food Science and Nutrition Club finished a busy fall semester filled with industry speakers, field trips, a BBQ, and the 40th Anniversary celebration for their Food Science and Nutrition Department! They are off to a busy start this spring organizing a monthly dinner club, speakers, and working to start a student-run chocolate organization.
Send pictures of how your Food Science Club is rounding out the school year to Emily Wolter, emwolter2@gmail.com, for inclusion in the next Midnight Snack issue and on the blog, Science Meets Food!

Blueplate Specials: Opportunities for IFTSA Members

IFTSA and Feeding Tomorrow want to reward all of your hard work and dedication in the form of scholarships. There are a variety of opportunities available, so check out the applications and apply for the one that suits you best! Hurry, click here, graduate and undergraduate applications must be sent in by April 2nd. If you know any high school seniors who are planning to pursue an undergraduate degree in food science, please pass along the link for Freshman Scholarships. The deadline is May 13th.

Science Meets Food, the official IFTSA blog, is growing in its delivery of food science news and IFTSA updates and, as such, is on the hunt for more enthusiastic students to join the blogging team. Not interested in a full-time blogging position? You can submit a guest post or ideas for future posts to Bethany Richardson, bcricha2@illinois.edu.


IFT wants you and your fellow OFGs to create a 1-4 minute video summarizing “A Day in the Life of a Food Science Student.”  You have until May 15th to put your creativity into action and potentially have your video featured at the IFT Annual Meeting opening general session. Click here to read more about how to get involved.


Do not let your FREE year of transition membership pass you by. When the time comes to renew your IFT membership, you will see a statement under the “My Account” tab of ift.org that states “No Longer a Student? Click Here.” Your first year of IFT membership as an industry professional will be FREE!


  1. What is the primary protein in traditional marshmallows?
  2. What are the three main components of aerosol products?
  3. What is the chemical name for Teflon?


  1. Gelatin
  2. Propellants (provide pressure to force product out), solvents (bring active ingredients into solution with propellant), and active ingredients
  3. Polytetrafluoroethylene 


Mike CarsonSnapshot of your life now (current employer, where do you live, hobbies).
I am working at VAN HEES Inc, a producer of functional ingredient blends for the Meat Industry, as the technical sales manager for the Midwest region. My condo is located in Arlington Heights, IL, a suburb of Chicago located about 20 minutes from O’Hare Airport. My second home is my 2002 Nissan Xterra, which I travel in for work quite a bit. I volunteer with my IFT section as an Executive Board Member, chair of the New Professionals (NP) group, and volunteer on the National IFT New Professional Task Force in charge of setting up NP programs at the IFT Annual Meeting.

Where did you attend college?
I attended the University of Illinois where I earned a degree in Food Science and Human Nutrition in May of 2008.

How did you get interested in food science?
Back in high school, I became interested in cooking as a hobby and nutrition for sports, which developed into a passion for learning more about food. I was always strong in math and science in school, so I found a major that combined my strengths with what I am passionate about.

How did IFT/IFTSA help you in your transition from student to professional?
As an IFTSA member, I attended our local section’s “student night.” It is a resume building and speed networking event for juniors and seniors in food science programs. During the networking portion of this event, I met my future boss. Being involved in extracurricular activities and having my resume critiqued by a recruiter definitely helped me to get the job.

Can you share any tips of success for students who might be entering the workforce for the first time?
The thing that has made me successful is developing a network of strong contacts in the food industry. No matter what career path you choose in the industry, having a diverse group of people to call on for help is invaluable.


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