Food Studies

Andrea Cornelius, Food Studies Major, May 2019

Andrea Cornelius Portrait

An Interview with Andrea Cornelius

Food Studies Major
Class of May 2019

What is/was the focus of your interests in Food Studies? If you completed an internship, what did it entail?
My Internship was at the Hendricks Chapel Food Pantry. My duties were reaching out to the community inside and outside the campus to better understand food insecurity on the campus and in the community.

What did/do you enjoy most about your experience?
I enjoyed interacting with the community and fostering a connection to both students and community members, along with informing the public about “Free Bread Day,” an event that occurs every Thursday in the basement of Hendricks Chapel where bread and pastries from Panera would be given out for free to students.

Talk about a challenging or new experience you faced during your internship, how you managed it, and what you learned as a result.
My biggest challenge was trying to set up an event to raise funds for the Pantry. As I had originally suspected, it took a lot of communication and understanding from both ends to try and make it work.

How did your Food Studies classes experiences/degree/internship prepare you to work in the broad field of Food Studies?
The internship provided me with a better sense of justice and understanding for communities and people who suffer from food insecurity. I learned that there will have to be more done to ensure that everyone can be fed other than having a food pantry available.

What’s next for you or what are you up to now?
After graduation, I’d like to see if I can get an occupation somewhere around Washington, DC, or really any major city doing something regarding sustainability, working with a non-governmental organization, working with a farm-to-fork organization, or teaching and spreading awareness about the food system and how it can better serve the citizens it’s supposed to serve.

Falk College expands graduate merit scholarships beginning Summer 2019

Falk College White and MacNaughton Hall Exterior

Graduate merit scholarships have been expanded for prospective students interested in matriculating into master’s degrees, either full- or part-time, offered in Falk College effective Summer 2019 (includes MAYmester Summer Session I, Summer Session II, Combined Summer Session). Incentives include no application fee, GRE waiver where applicable, and a 25 percent tuition discount incentive, which is applied after any other scholarships, scholarship credits, assistantships and remitted tuition credits are applied.

Eligible matriculated students include:

  • All Syracuse University alumni applying to master’s degree programs in Falk College (see list below), including members of the Class of 2019;
  • Children of current full-time Syracuse University employees (notarized supplemental forms required);
  • Any Advanced Standing MSW-enrolled student from any accredited BSW/BSSW program throughout the nation, and;
  • Current Falk master’s program students who are Syracuse University alumni; children of current full-time Syracuse University employees are also eligible.

Falk graduate programs include:

  • Food Studies, M.S.
  • Global Health, M.S.
  • Human Development & Family Science, M.A., M.S.
  • Marriage and Family Therapy, M.A.
  • Nutrition Science, M.A., M.S.
  • Public Health, M.S.
  • Social Work, Advanced Standing Program, M.S.W.
  • Social Work, M.S.W.
  • Social Work and Marriage and Family Therapy Dual Degree, M.A./M.S.W.
  • Sport Venue & Event Management, M.S.

Interested students should contact Falk Admissions, submit their application by February 15, and must formally matriculate. For more information, please contact the Falk College Office of Admissions at 315.443.5555 or email Award is subject to change.

Contact Admissions

Weissman discusses potential impact of Tops grocery store closings

Evan Weissman
Evan Weissman, Ph.D.

Evan Weissman, Ph.D., assistant professor of food studies, speaks with NewsRadio 570 WSYR on the potential impact of the Tops grocery store closings. Listen to the podcast. Dr. Weissman’s research examines grassroots efforts to address food disparities in urban America. He teaches introductory and upper-division courses in food studies and employ hands-on approaches through community engagement. Dr. Weissman is a founding member and currently serves on the board of Syracuse Grows, a grassroots network that cultivates food justice through advocacy, education, and resources in support of urban food production.

Falk announces Graduate Merit Scholarships for Syracuse University students

Syracuse University Students at CommencementFalk College is pleased to announce the Falk College Merit Award Scholarship for current Syracuse University students interested in applying for a Falk College master’s degree.

Incentives include no application fee, GRE waiver where applicable, and a 25% tuition discount incentive, which is applied after any other scholarships, scholarship credits, assistantships, and remitted tuition credits are applied.

To be eligible for the scholarship, students must be a current Syracuse University student in good standing with an overall GPA of 3.4 or higher applying for part-time or full-time study in one of the following degree programs:

Interested students must contact Falk Admissions and submit their application by February 15. Successful applicants will be officially admitted by the academic department and must formally matriculate for a 2019-2020 term.

“Falk College graduate degree programs allow undergraduates of all majors to tailor and enhance their career opportunities,” says Falk College director of admissions, Felicia Otero. “For example, bachelor’s degrees in psychology and sociology pair especially well with a master’s degree in social work (MSW), marriage and family therapy (MFT), or the SWK-MFT dual program, as well as human development and family science, public health, and global health.

“Undergraduates studying business, management, advertising, and public relations can apply their skills directly to our sport venue and event management master’s program. Students with skills in these disciplines might also apply to public health, global health, and food studies master’s programs, alongside students with bachelor’s degrees in communication & rhetorical studies, English, advertising, and education,” Otero continues. “Undergraduates in biology and chemistry programs often pursue graduate study in nutrition science, as well as public health and global health programs at Falk.”

“Falk graduate degrees lead to a variety of careers and end-credentials,” says Deborah Golia, assistant director of admissions at Falk College. “You’ll find Falk alumni working as counselors, therapists, social workers, community advocates, community educators, public health specialists, nonprofit program directors, managers, nutritionists, dietitians, sustainability program educators, and in limitless other roles.”

“Falk College graduate degrees also lead to research professions and continued study in doctoral programs,” she adds.

Falk Admissions will host a Graduate Information Session on Friday, November 2 in Falk Complex, White Hall, Room 335 at 4:00 p.m. In addition to review of Falk graduate programs, interested students can learn more about Falk Graduate Scholarships. For more information, please contact the Falk College Office of Admissions at 315.443.5555 or email

Artist Seitu Jones visits for lecture and workshop October 4, 6

Seitu Jones
Seitu Jones

Falk College’s food studies program, together with the Syracuse University College of Visual and Performing Arts (VPA), Canary Lab, and the Humanities Center, partnering with Brady Farm in Syracuse, are pleased to welcome artist Seitu Jones to campus for a lecture and a workshop October 4 and 6, part of the Humanities Center’s 2018/19 Stories Symposium.

Jones will give a lecture, “CREATE: Art, Act & Eat,” on October 4 in Watson Auditorium from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. where he will discuss how he draws from both food and activism to inspire his public art projects, and how these components bring about new community stories. On October 6 from 2:00 to 4:30 p.m. at Brady Farm in Syracuse, Jones will lead a hands-on workshop connecting food stories and community art. Reservations are required for participation in the Saturday workshop. Please RSVP to Ed Morris at by October 4.

Visit the Falk College website calendar for more information on the October 4 lecture or the October 6 workshop, or contact Elissa Johnson at

About Seitu Jones
Seitu Jones was born in Minneapolis in 1951. Working on his own or in collaboration, Jones has created over 30 large-scale public art works. He’s been awarded a Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowship, a McKnight Visual Artist Fellowship, a Bush Artist Fellowship, a Bush Leadership Fellowship, and a National Endowment for the Arts/Theater Communication Group Designer Fellowship. Seitu was awarded a 2001-2002 Loeb Fellowship at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and was the Artist-in-Residence in the Harvard Ceramics Program. He was Millennium Artist-in-Residence for 651 Arts in Brooklyn, NY, and was the first Artist-in-Residence for the City of Minneapolis. In 2014, he integrated artwork into three stations for the new Greenline Light Rail Transit system in the Twin Cities. A 2013 Joyce Award, from Chicago’s Joyce Foundation allowed Seitu to develop CREATE: The Community Meal, a dinner for 2,000 people at a table a half a mile long. The project focused on access to healthy food. Seitu is working with members of his neighborhood to create a 5-acre farm in a new St. Paul city park. For 18 months Seitu was a Senior Fellow in Agricultural Systems in the College of Food, Agriculture and Natural Science Resources at the University of Minnesota. Jones received an MLS in Environmental History and a BS in Landscape Design from the University of Minnesota.

Lindsay De May, 16′, Food Studies Major

Lindsay DeMay Portrait

An Interview with Lindsay De May

Food Studies Major, Minors in Management Studies and Nutrition
Class of May ’16

What was the focus of your work in Food Studies? If you did an internship, what did it entail? If you did a thesis, what did you focus on?
The focus of my work in Food Studies was pretty broad. For example, I interned at a Certified Organic, vegan farm in the Finger Lakes one summer, but also spent 2 years working as a culinary arts learning assistant. My senior thesis followed theme to my experiences where I took a holistic approach on food and researched the complexities of implementing a US National Food Policy through a Human Rights Framework.

What did you enjoy most about your experience?
I love the Food Studies family! The professors continue to inspire me, even after I’ve graduated. Many of my fellow Food Studies alumni remain some of my closest friends.

Talk about a challenging or new experience you faced during your internship/research, how you managed it, and what you learned as a result.How did your Food Studies classes experiences/degree/internship prepare you to work in the broad field of Food Studies?
I think the perspective and background that I sequestered through Food Studies classes are extremely applicable to many fields. The secret strength of the Food Studies program is that I gained a basic understanding of the inter-sectional nature of our food system, which required me to learn about other fields (geography, sociology, economics, political science).

What’s next for you of what are you up to now?
After graduation, I spent 2 years divvying up my time as a garden teacher, grant writer, farmer’s market assistant manager, and community representative. This semester, I began my joint degree at Vermont Law School working towards a Juris Doctorate and Masters in Food and Agricultural Law and Policy. I never anticipated going to Law school until my last year in the Food Studies program, which opened my eyes to the need for lawyers in the field of Food and Agriculture.

Welsh’s expertise in agriculture’s technological change shared with U.S. EPA scientific panel

Rick Welsh PortraitA critical issue facing U.S. and global agriculture, specifically corn and cotton crops, is widespread resistance to crops genetically engineered to manifest the soil bacteria bacillus thuriengensis or Bt. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) has convened a Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP) to consider a set of eight Charge Questions related to the issue titled: “Resistance of Lepidopteran Pests to Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) Plant Incorporated Protectants in the United States.” Rick Welsh, the Falk Family Endowed Professor of Food Studies, served as an ad hoc panel member during a workshop held in Rosslyn, VA from July 17-20.

Syracuse University’s food studies program is often sought after for expertise on U.S. and global agriculture issues. Welsh, who chairs Falk College’s Department of Public Health, Food Studies and Nutrition, has a long record of surveying and interviewing farmers about technological change in agriculture and related environmental management strategies. The author of numerous publications on environmental regulation of Genetically Engineered Crops, he brought expertise to the SAP primarily regarding farmer non-compliance with refuge requirements for Bt crops.

The commercialization of Bt crops in the early 1990s led to rapid adoption rates among U.S. farmers. Because of the widespread use of Bt crops, the U.S. EPA was concerned that pest populations in these crops would develop Bt resistance. Therefore, it required farmers to plant non-Bt crops on a small percentage of their land to create refuges for susceptible pest populations. According to Welsh, “this theoretically would delay or forestall resistance development since a population of susceptible insects would be maintained. However, it appears that at least in the southern states, farmers have not complied with the requirements, and widespread resistance for major pests of corn and cotton has emerged.”

Caroline Bridges Plante, 18′, Food Studies Major

Caroline Bridges Plante portrait

An Interview with Caroline Bridges Plante

What was the focus of your work in Food Studies?
I have become focused on the human rights of food producers in developing nations, specifically the protection of indigenous peoples’ lands and foodways, which was the focus of my thesis.

What did you enjoy most about your experience?
I enjoyed piecing together my interests in sustainability, human rights, and food throughout the research process, and exemplifying the importance of looking at food issues through both lenses.

How did your Food Studies classes experiences/degree/internship prepare you to work in the broad field of Food Studies?
From learning how to sustainably grow crops in Agroecology to the role of government programs in Emergency Food Systems, I am confident that I could successfully take my career in any direction I choose.

What’s next for you?
I recently moved to Denver and I will be starting a Master’s program in International Human Rights at DU in the fall.

Anything else you’d like to add about your food studies experience in general?
When people ask what Food Studies is about I feel like I could spend an hour answering their question. They usually conclude by saying it sounds fascinating– and I couldn’t agree more! I am so thankful that I found this program by sheer chance, and that I get to turn my love for food into a meaningful career.

2017-2018: A Year In Review

Newsletter of the Graduate Program in Food Studies

Volume I

Inside this Issue

  1. Message from the Graduate Director
  2. Congrats Food Studies M.S. Graduates
  3. Continuing Graduate Student Research
  4. Conferences & Presentations
  5. Awards
  6. Scrapbook

A Message From Dr. Anne Bellows, Food Studies Graduate Director

Anne C. BellowsThe 2017-2018 academic year has closed with four students earning Master of Science (M.S.) degrees and three students with Certificates of Advanced Studies (C.A.S.) in Food Studies. They include: Briana Alfaro, Hillary Chartron- Bartholomew, Mallory (Molly) Ennist, and Irma Nurliawati with the M.S. degree and Nodira Azizova, Tom Mackey, and Kris Walton with the C.A.S. In December 2016, Shelby Squire rocketed through with our first Food Studies M.S. even as we were moving the program into full swing. This year is really our first regular graduating class and we are very excited to see them launch forward. As you will see from the descriptions inside, each has excelled at research and program engagements, presenting their work at national and regional conferences and workshops. We look forward to next year with a powerful group of returning M.S. students – Maegan, Katie, Cheyenne, and Adrianne – as well as a greatly anticipated crop of new students. The program is growing; our collaborations with partners on campus and beyond expanding; and we are ready to develop our particular program niche and strengths in food justice and policy, political economy, and human rights.

Congratulations M.S. Food Studies Graduates 2017-18

Briana Alfaro

Practicum site: San Diego Food System Alliance, San Diego, CA
“I collected narratives on accessing public land for the Urban Agriculture Working Group, created an assessment tool to determine whether a restaurant is “healthy” from a food systems perspective, helped to plan a Farm Bill Forum for local stakeholders, and undertook grant research.”

Hillary Katrina Chartron-Bartholomew

Practicum site: Cornell Cooperative Extension of Onondaga County, Syracuse, NY
“This Practicum facilitated a 2018 Central New York Food Summit with the theme Improving Our Local Food System. Focusing on all sections of our food system, this event connected farmers, processors, distributors, community partners, educators, and policymakers to help advance our local food system in Central NewYork.”

Molly Ennist

Practicum site: Capital Roots, Albany, NY
“I spent my Practicum working with Capital Roots on the Greater Capital Region Food System Assessment, an ongoing assessment of the regional food system encompassing 11 counties. Specifically, I analyzed the food recovery system in the region, developing a systems map and identifying key players. This work included analyzing survey information, interviewing, and general research.”

Irma Nurliawati

Practicum site: Agricultural Affairs Division, The Embassy of the Republic of Indonesia, Washington, DC
“My main job as an intern under the agriculture attaché was to assist with her works, such as preparing and attending
meetings; writing technical papers; and preparing information or data related to trade, agriculture (including food and fisheries), forestry and environment. I was assigned to assist the attaché in organizing the 2017 ASEAN Agricultural Attaché Roundtable and preparing a technical paper, “The Potential of Cacao Products From Indonesia and its Market Opportunities in the United States” for The Ministry of Agriculture.”

Irma’s thesis title was: “Indonesia’s Food Safety Regulations on the Import of Fresh Agri-Foods: Balancing Public Health Protection and Trade Facilitation.” Policy makers have the responsibility to balance the economic benefits (e.g., right to work and the right to adequate standard of living) and public health protection (right to safe and adequate food) to ensure an inclusive regulation. The study analyzed Indonesia’s existing national food safety standards for imported fresh foods using a food sovereignty framework and human rights perspective. It identified the most suitable food safety control mechanism at the border, particularly for fresh imported products in Indonesia.

Research from Continuing Students

Maegan Krajewski

Lunch Money: School Food Programming in Regina, Saskatchewan
The study will use qualitative interviewing techniques to understand the work that local organizations, volunteers, and school administrators do to provide school food programming in the city of Regina. With no national school food program in Canada, Regina will serve as a case study for how a particular municipality operates to provide food to schoolchildren.

Katherine Mott

Shortcomings of Healthy Food Financing Initiatives in Grocery Stores: The Case of Syracuse, New York
This paper aims to analyze Near Westside residents’ food access strategies in the wake of the loss of their cornerstone grocery store. This research contributes to broader discussions on the complexities of food access issues within marginalized communities. Precisely, this paper examines why grocery stores within low-income neighborhoods of color might rely heavily on financing initiatives for produce and why these initiatives are often times unsuccessful.

Cheyenne Schoen

Opportunities and Challenges of Refugee Farmers in an Organized Farming Project in Syracuse, New York
This paper qualitatively analyzes the Refugee and Immigrant Self-Empowerment (RISE) farming project, which engages New Americans in an organized gardening and farming program in Syracuse. Cheyenne will interview active farmers in the RISE project to understand their cultural perceptions, barriers and goals to farming, and compare those to the goals of organizational staff and farm land owners.

Adrianne Traub

Female Fermenters of New York
In 1913 considerably more than half the cannery workers in New York State were women (Factory Investigating Commission, 1913). Who were these female fermenters and how did their role shape the cultural food ways of the region? How did their roles in their families, communities, and workplaces change? Through interviews, archival research, and scholarly literature their story is revealed as one of reliance and multifaceted identity.

Conferences & Presentations

AFHVS/ASFS 2017 – Migrating Food Cultures: Engaging Pacific Perspectives on Food and Agriculture

Briana Alfaro, “Local Beer, Local Governance: Policy Issues for San Diego Breweries”
Molly Ennist, “Locating the Intersection of Violence Against Women and Violations of The Human Right to Adequate Food and Nutrition”
Irma Nurliawati, “Food Safety Regulations on the Import of Fresh Agrifoods: A Human Right Perspective on Fair Trade and Right to Safe Food in Indonesia”
Adrianne Traub, “Fueling the Rural Economy: Funding Food Infrastructure”

Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Working Group (NESAWG) 2017: “It Takes a Region” Conference

Graduate Student Posters:
Adrianne Traub
Katherine Mott
Molly Ennist

AFHVS/ASFS 2018 – The Agroecological Prospect: The Politics of Integrating Food and Farming with Values and the Land

Maegan Krajewski, “Together We Can Grow Community: Community Gardening in North Central Regina”
Katherine Mott, “Shortcomings of Healthy Food Financing Initiatives in Grocery Stores: The Case of Syracuse, New York”
Cheyenne Schoen, “Food Insecurity & Feeding Work Among Immigrant Women Domestic Workers”
Adrianne Traub: “Female Fermenters of New York”

Falk College Research Poster Celebration 2018

Maegan Krajewski, “Rights or Wrong: Concerns with Canada’s Implementation of the Right to Food”
Katherine Mott, “An Analysis of the Closing of Nojaim Brothers Supermarket in the Near Westside Neighborhood of Syracuse, NY: Initial Findings”
Cheyenne Schoen, “Right to Food in U.S. News”
Adrianne Traub, “Procuring Local and Regional Foods from Beginning Farmers: A Qualitative Study of Intermediaries”

Award Recipients

Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award – Briana Alfaro

“Briana always exceeds expectations as a Teaching Assistant by providing critical assistance to the students both in and out of the classroom. She has proven to be highly motivated, exceptionally competent, and genuinely passionate about her position as a Teaching Assistant. Her outstanding dedication to student learning makes her a strong asset to our University community and Food Studies Department.”
~ Adrianne Traub, Adjunct Instructor and graduate student

2018 Excellence in Graduate Education Faculty Recognition Award – Dr. Evan Weissman

“Dr. Weissman is an innovative scholar who sees opportunities for engagement in the classroom as tied to social justice, practical application, and community engagement. His graduate level courses meet students where they’re at in their academic journey, and then push them to become engaged scholars who are concerned with the lasting impact that a well-informed citizen can make in their community, at any level. His students have benefitted from this grounded approach and go on to complete cogent research and critical professional advancements.”
~ Elissa Johnson, Internship Practicum Coordinator, Food Studies

Roseane do Socorro Gonçalves Viana Human Rights Award – Cheyenne Schoen

Best graduate paper on human right to food, nutrition, and/or health.

Scrapbook 2017-2018

Graduates pose outside Manley Field House
Graduate food studies students on their graduation day in May 2018. Pictured from left: Hillary Katrina Chartron Bartholomew, Briana Alfaro, Molly Ennist, and Irma Nurliawati.
Student and Professor pose with award certificates
Dr. Evan Weissman and graduate student and teaching assistant Briana Alfaro receive awards for excellence in graduate education teaching as outstanding faculty and graduate teaching assistant, respectively.
Group shot in With Love restaurant in Syracuse, NY
Food Studies faculty, staff and graduate students at an end-of-year dinner in May 2018. Pictured from left:
Back row: Dr. Evan Weissman, Elissa Johnson, Adrianne Traub. Front row: Dr. Laura-Anne Minkoff-Zern, Maegan Krajewski, Irma Nurliawati, Katherine Mott, Molly Ennist, Briana Alfaro, Jennifer Hurley.

Learn more about Food Studies

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Ashia Aubourg, 18′, Food Studies Major

Ashia Aubourg holds picked strawberries in a field

An Interview with Ashia Aubourg

Where did you complete your internship and what did your internship entail?
I completed my internship at the High School for Leadership & Public Service in New York City. My role was “Teaching Intern”. This entailed developing a semester long curriculum for senior high school students and teaching the students as well. I focused on teaching the students about policy development, and later on looked at different food policies as case studies with the students.

What did you enjoy most about your experience?
I enjoyed working with the students and giving them empowering tools in the classroom to use within their own lives.

Talk about a challenging or new experience you faced during your internship, how you managed it, and what you learned as a result.
Many of the youth felt disempowered in the class room as a result of years of disappointments from the school system. It was very difficult to build trust with the students at first, I learned to get to know the students and meet them where they were. I wanted the students to feel like they had a voice in the class and that they were not being policed, so I had to tweak many of our classroom policies to make them work better for the students.

How did this internship prepare you to work in the broad field of Food Studies?
I gained many skills as a teacher: curricula development, management skills, communication skills, research etc. I believe that all of these skills are necessary in the broad field of food studies.

What’s next for you?
I am currently the Program Coordinator at Food for Free, a non-profit in Cambridge, MA. The goal is to do more work with youth empowerment and food systems.

Anything else you’d like to add?
I had a great experience with the Food Studies program. It taught me about systems thinking and how to critique that status quo. I hope to take what I have learned in this program to do real work to ameliorate some of the issues within the food system domestically and abroad.