Midnight Snack: November 2011 Official Newsletter of the IFT Student Association


Head Chef: A Letter from our President

Happy Holidays Foodies!

Jennifer WilligOnce again it's crunch time in the world of academia! With school winding down and finals around the corner, I wanted to remind you of the quickly approaching deadlines for the 2012 IFTSA competitions. This newsletter will give you all of the details!

The IFTSA Board of Directors met November 17 and 18 in Washington, DC for the Mid-Year Meeting. During the meeting, the board carefully reviewed the IFTSA Annual Operating Plan and specifically discussed strategies for increasing membership, improving professional development, and implementing philanthropic outreach. I am excited to announce the Webinar series, "Careers in Food Science" will be kicking off in the Spring of 2012. The new IFTSA recruitment video will also debut at a local area meeting near you soon!

Jennifer Willig
IFTSA President 2011-2012

Expiration Dates: Announcements & Deadlines

2012 Evan Turek Memorial Scholarship/Kraft Foods Internship
Are you interested in being an intern at one of the largest global food companies? Kraft Foods is offering a paid summer internship for an undergraduate student in 2012. Visit here to access the internship application. The application deadline is January 9, 2012.

IFT's Online Community
Are you fully utilizing IFT's Online Community? This resource is a hidden gem within ift.org and offers a lot to IFTSA members. So, how can you make the most of IFT's Online Community? Let's count the ways!

  • Search the directory to re-connect with old acquaintances and acquire new contacts
  • Join groups with like-minded interests and stay up-to-date with current issues
  • Contribute to and learn from pertinent discussions
  • Update your profile to ensure your contact information is correct
  • Personalize the types of alerts that you would like to receive in your inbox
  • Create a blog as an outlet to share your thoughts and ideas with others in the industry

Competition Deadlines
Are you hoping to submit a winning entry to one (or more) of the 2012 IFTSA Competitions? Don't forget about the important 2012 IFTSA competition deadlines for preliminary proposals.
January 6: Division Competition Abstracts
January 7: Heart Healthy Product Development Competition
January 15: Developing Solutions for Developing Countries Competition
February 1: Product Development Competition
February 10: Education Division Paper Competition
February 15: Disney-IFTSA Product Development Competition
March 1: Undergraduate Research Competition Abstracts
March 1: Excellence in Leadership Nominations
May 1: Chapter of the Year Applications

March 28-29: IFT Wellness Conference (Heart Healthy Competition)
June 25-28: IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo in Las Vegas

IFTSA Elections: Call for Nominations
"Why should I get involved with IFTSA leadership?"

Check out the potential benefits

  • Share your inspiration: See actual results within the organization (We REALLY are student governed).
  • Networking: Not only will you meet other leading food science students and professionals, but you can also be on a first name basis with them.
  • Real leadership experience: Have the opportunity to learn and practice actual leadership skills.
  • Get noticed: Looks great on your resume and it never hurts knowing someone on the inside when trying to get your foot in the door.

If you think that you would be a great contributor to the future of IFTSA, nominate yourself and/or a peer for a 2012-2013 leadership position today!

The Process:

  • Check out the list of officer descriptions.
  • Decide whether you can commit to volunteering your time and participating in travel events (i.e. be sure to check with your professor and/or academic advisor in advance).
  • Submit an online nomination form here!

Nominations are due January 15, 2012
Questions? Contact IFTSA Immediate Past President, Andrea Bouma, at andrea.e.bouma@gmail.com.

Local Flare: Chapter & Club News

Send In Club Activity Photos
What has your food science club been up to this year? If you have photos from a recent club event, IFTSA would love to take a peek! Check out the creative ideas featured below.

Oklahoma State UniversityOklahoma State University set up shop at the 2011 College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Round Up and informed students of their food science club's first meeting via the label on cans of Hershey's kisses. The food science club designed the labels together.


Texas Tech UniversityTexas Tech University made Raider Dots with frozen yogurt base and liquid nitrogen which was served at the 2011 College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Round Up. The frozen yogurt and boiling liquid nitrogen proved to be a tasty way to entice people to learn about food science.


Texas A & M UniversityThe food science club at Texas A & M University has had a number of productive meetings where they hosted companies such as Kellogg's and the Dr. Pepper Snapple Group. As a fundraiser, Texas A & M hosted a Halloween bake sale. They also held a month-long community service project and collected 94 pounds of food for a local food bank.

Alabama A & M UniversityFood science students from Alabama A & M University (AAMU) visited The Coca-Cola Company headquarters in Atlanta, GA, for the IFT Southeastern Section fall meeting on November 2, 2011, where participants networked and attended a presentation by David Schmidt (International Food Information Council).

University Of GeorgiaFood science club members at the University Of Georgia (UGA) hosted a Halloween meeting where they recruited new members, promoted the department, and created awareness of what food science is all about with a food costume competition.


Louisiana State UniversityLouisiana State University's Food Science Club led students from the Louisiana School for the Visually Impaired in experiments and demonstrations that focused on the chemistry of barbeque.


University of FloridaFood science club members at the University of Florida cooked healthy, well-balanced meals for residents of the Winn Dixie Hope Lodge. This is a home for out-of-town families of cancer patients to stay while their loved ones undergo treatment at a local hospital.




Mississippi State University


Don't spill the jelly! The Mississippi State University Food Science Club has recently completed their annual Jelly Fundraiser, and will soon begin packaging and shipping their products to customers around the country.


Clemson University


Clemson University's Food Science and Human Nutrition Club earned second place in their department's tailgate display.





What is your most popular fundraiser? How are you stepping out into the community and making a difference? How are you furthering the professional development of your members? If you have pictures of your club's latest endeavors, send them to Emily Wolter at emily.wolter@ttu.edu. The deadline to submit info is January 6, 2012.

Blueplate Specials: Opportunities for IFTSA Members

Official Food Geek

Are you an Official Food Geek?
Coming soon to a food science club near you, official food geek stickers! These waterproof stickers can be used anywhere from your laptops to water bottles! Be on the lookout for them at your next area meeting or have your food science club request them at IFT. Email aylijoki@ift.org.

Help Shape IFT's New Mentoring Tool
IFT will soon be increasing the value of your membership! In the coming months, a new online mentoring tool will launch in the IFT Career Center. We'd like to invite you to help shape this program by completing a brief survey outlining what you would look for in a mentoring program. This will be an exclusive membership benefit. Be sure to share your opinions by Wednesday, November 28 by visiting the following link:  http://www.zoomerang.com/Survey/WEB22DM8HCDFG6

Put Your Creative Mind to Good Use
IFTSA provides a variety of competitions to challenge its members and enable students to apply what they learn in the classroom to real life situations. Explore all of the options on the IFTSA website and determine which competition best suits you and your teammates.

Abstract and Paper Competitions
Are you working on a research project that promotes economic, business, or marketing applications of food science and technology? Planning to submit a poster for the IFT meeting in Las Vegas? Submit your abstract and poster to the Marketing and Management Division competition and another division of your choice. IFT is supporting 25 division and allied organization abstract and paper competitions, providing students with the opportunity to share their research. To submit to the Abstract & Paper Competitions visit the Call for Proposals and Abstracts page and link to: http://www.am-fe.ift.org/cms/?pid=1000497

Food Science Professionals on the Road and Headed to Your School
Learn more about how marketing plays into the role of food scientists by hosting a speaker from the Marketing and Management Division of IFT for a Road Show presentation at your university. The M&M Division will arrange a visit from an industry professional who will speak on the business-side of product development and food production. The content of this presentation will be especially valuable for product development teams. Contact Robert Koch at kochr@ajiusa.com to include your university on the list of presentations for the year.

Attention Aspiring Food Bloggers
IFTSA has a blog in the works and we are looking for help from some of our talented student members. If you have any blogging experience or simply enjoy writing about science and food, we could definitely use your assistance. If you are interested in this opportunity, please contact Emily Wolter at emily.wolter@ttu.edu.

IFT Member Profile: Sarah Woodling Houle

SnSarah Woodling Houleapshot of my life now:
Right now, I live in Golden Valley, Minnesota (10 minutes west of Minneapolis. I currently work for General Mills in the Big G Cereal Division. My focus is on health and new products which keeps me very busy! As I write this, I am sitting in one of our cereal plants starting up a new kid's cereal which will be on store shelves in January 2012. I have also worked on some silent health improvements on some of our biggest cereals, like Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios. Prior to cereal, I worked on bread for three years in our Bakeries & Foodservice division. My biggest success was the development and launch of the Fiber One® breads, they are very tasty! Outside of work, my husband and I like to do home improvement projects, go running, and watch football this time of year. My favorite hobby is raising and showing Pembroke Welsh Corgis. I am actively showing three dogs.

Where did I attend college?Because I received the opportunity as a high school student to spend six weeks at Penn State University participating in the Pennsylvania Governor's School for Agricultural Sciences (PGSAS), my decision to attend Penn State for my bachelor's degree in food science was an easy one. I knew I would enjoy the program and working with the faculty. I was also accepted into the Schreyer's Honors College in addition to the food science program. I loved every minute of my four years at Penn State, and while it was very tempting to stick around to get my master's degree, I decided it was time to broaden my horizons and attend a different program. I spent the next two years researching Non-Thermal Pulsed Light treatment of stainless steel surfaces under Dr. Carmen Moraru at Cornell University. While at Cornell, I was elected as the IFTSA North Atlantic Area Student Rep, and had the opportunity to organize and host the area meeting. Ultimately, I decided a PhD was not in the cards for me, so I graduated in August 2005 and began my career with General Mills a few weeks later.

How did I get interested in food science?
Remember that really geeky kid in high school who thought science fair projects were really cool? Yeah, that was me. During my sophomore year in high school, I picked a project that looked at ways of treating eggs so that they could be stored at ambient temperatures, mainly because I thought I stood a good shot of being chosen to attend the county science fair. I was living in Lancaster, PA, at the time, and the poultry industry has a pretty strong presence in that region. My dad took me to meet with several manufacturers who in turn pointed me to Dr. Paul Patterson, a professor specializing in poultry science at Penn State. He was my project mentor over the next 3 years, and he was the one who told me that I should major in food science. When I was a junior, he suggested that I apply for Governor's School, and I was lucky enough to be accepted. So, thanks to my love of science fairs and a few eggs, I found my passion for food science.

How did IFT/IFTSA help me in my transition from student to professional?I was fortunate enough to have been elected as the North Atlantic Area rep my second year in grad school. I was in charge of organizing the area meeting which was such a great experience. Being responsible for such a large project required me to learn how to delegate, oversee, and effectively manage teams and people which is something you don't always learn in school. The organizational skills and time management experience were also extremely helpful when I landed my first job. I also competed in several IFT poster and oral competitions while I was a student, and they really honed my presentation skills. I truly felt that my involvement with IFT and IFTSA helped give me an edge over my peers when I transitioned from student life to the professional world. I felt like I was really able to hit the ground running, and did not feel overwhelmed by what was asked of me when I had to multitask and work on teams.

What are some tips of success for students who might be entering the workforce for the first time?
A million thoughts come to mind, but in the interest of being easy to remember, here is the one that is top of mind: Find a mentor (or two).A mentor is so valuable to you throughout your career. It is great to have someone whose opinion you respect and value when you are trying to make decisions and think through tough situations where another perspective would be valuable. Try to identify someone within, and potentially outside your new company, to act as a mentor. It doesn't have to be a very formal relationship; the important thing is that you have someone who can provide wisdom and insight when you need it. A successful mentor and mentee relationship can be very fulfilling on both sides, so give some thought to a person that you respect and admire as far as their professional (and personal) successes, and ask them if they would be willing to serve as your mentor. You won't regret it!

College Bowl Trivia
The College Bowl is an annual food science quiz hosted by the IFT Student Association. Teams from universities around the country compete regionally for a chance to contend in the finals at the IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo. Test your knowledge with these sample questions!

Q1: What color is the indicator phenolphthalein in a basic solution?
Q2: According to federal standards, how much carbon dioxide must be produced from baking powders when water and heat are applied?
Q3: What is the name of the protein in egg whites that binds biotin?

A1: Pink
A2: At least 12% CO2
A3: Avidin

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