Undergraduate Research

The deadline for the 2018 competition has passed.

If you have been participating in an independent research project, then the Undergraduate Research Competition is for you. The competition is open to any IFTSA undergraduate member who has participated in original research, and who has not graduated by July 1, 2017.

Entrants are asked to submit a letter of intent to enter, an abstract describing the research (500 words or less), and a verification letter from the Food Science Department Head. Six finalists will be chosen to present their research both orally and via poster at the IFT Annual Meeting in the summer. Each finalist will be given a $500 travel award. In addition, the top three finalists will be awarded prizes of $1000, $750, and $250 and will be sent to them after the Annual Meeting.

Competition Guidelines


Any student member of IFT, as of March 1, of the year of the competition, who is an undergraduate student or who has not graduated prior to July 1, 2017 is eligible to compete. Work must have been done individually by an undergraduate. A signed letter from the Department Head or a professor verifying the originality of the student's work will be required. The letter must be received by the Undergraduate Research Competition Chair no later than March 1. Letters can be emailed.

*Review updated competition rules for recent rule changes and improvements 

2017 Winners:

1st Place: Anya Kwan, Harvey Mudd College
2nd Place: Dean Hauser, Cornell University
3rd Place: Ana Schmenk, The Ohio State University
Honorable Mention: Carolina Zuniga, University of Costa Rica; Katia Pozuelo Bonilla, Zamorano University; Alexander Mills, University of Massachusetts


March 1
Abstracts due

Finalists will be notified

July 15 - 18, 2018
IFT18: Oral & poster presentation

All submissions are due by 11:59pm CST

Sam Van Wees
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Competition Rules (PDF)
Sample Verification Letter (PDF)