Giving back is at the core of what keeps our profession vibrant and thriving. There are a number of ways to give back directly to the profession, and one of them is through Feeding Tomorrow, the foundation of IFT. Over the past 26 years, Feeding Tomorrow has funded more than $10 million in programs to support global food science efforts and to support new generations of food scientists.
This year more than 575 people registered for the 11th Annual IFT Student Association (IFTSA)/Feeding Tomorrow Fun Run & Walk on June 13 in Audubon Park in New Orleans. The IFTSA Fun Run and Walk Committee co-chaired by Leann Barden of the University of Massachusetts and Jen Merle of Rutgers University and their hardworking committee members deserve accolades for their efforts. The committee raised a very impressive total of $77,000 (the highest amount in Fun Run history) for Feeding Tomorrow’s undergraduate and graduate food science scholarships.
This year we had an opportunity to check in with a few of our previous scholarship recipients to learn more about their experiences.
• Andrea Bouma, Summer Scholarship Recipient, Oregon State University: “During my involvement in the Summer Scholars Program, I was able to work with a local farmer on implementing a new product. This opportunity allowed me to learn more about running a small business. It was a perfect segue into what I’m doing now.”
• Bryson Bolton, Summer Scholarship Recipient, Kraft Foods: “The Summer Scholars Program really impacted my career. It gave me an opportunity to conduct research with a renowned sensory scientist, and I’m proud to say that I got to publish that research.”
• Heather Biehl, Scholarship Recipient, WILD Flavors Inc.: “Being awarded the scholarship gave me an advantage in my career. It was a nice addition to my resume. It gives you an edge, and helps you to really stand out.”
• Justin Shimek, Scholarship Recipient, Del Monte Foods: “I was fortunate enough to be awarded an IFT scholarship as both an undergraduate and graduate student. Earlier in my career, it was recognition of my coursework and early involvement in the profession, while later it was recognition of my coursework, research, and accomplishments as a student leader.”
• Rashmi Tiwari, Scholarship Recipient, PepsiCo: “This is one of the best scholarships that students can apply for. It is highly competitive, and receiving it is really prestigious. Having a scholarship like that listed on your resume has a lot of impact.”
These food science professionals, and IFT members, are only a small number of individuals that Feeding Tomorrow has supported over the past 26 years. During this year’s meeting in New Orleans, Feeding Tomorrow’s Chair, Martha Rhodes Roberts, recognized our biggest individual contributors to date, Al Clausi and Bob Smith.
Sections are also supporting future generations through Feeding Tomorrow. The IFT Minnesota Section recently donated half of the proceeds from their annual Silent Auction to the Feeding Tomorrow Education Fund. And Feeding Tomorrow partnered with General Mills for a 2011 summer internship program, offering two scholarships and a paid internship in Research & Development at General Mills.
This year at the IFT Annual Meeting & Food Expo in New Orleans, we announced the establishment of the Evan Turek Memorial Scholarship supported by the Nonthermal Processing Division, and the Food Engineering Division, and the Kraft Foods Internship. The Evan Turek scholarship will be awarded to an undergraduate student pursuing a degree in food science. The scholarship joins two other prestigious scholarships established over the last several years including the Dr. Richard L. Hall Scholarship in Flavor Science, and the Dr. C. Ann Hollingsworth Student Leadership Scholarship.
Please consider giving back to your profession by making a tax deductible contribution to support the next generation of food scientists. Visit the “Your Contribution” section of the Feeding Tomorrow pages at feedingtomorrow.org, or e-mail [email protected]. Help us to feed the future of tomorrow.
Robert B. Gravani,
IFT President, 2010–2011
Professor of Food Science,
Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y.