Summer Scholars

Applications for Summer 2022 will open on October 15!

The Food Science Summer Scholars Program is a ten-week undergraduate research program giving students who are interested in food science the opportunity to:

  • Conduct research under the mentorship of a Cornell faculty member
  • Participate in a field trip to food industries
  • Discuss topics such as Ethics in Food Science, Applying for Graduate School, Product Development, and Learning from Research
  • Learn about food science career opportunities
  • Meet with food science representatives from industry, government, and academia
  • Present research to faculty and peers

Stipend Information

All participants in the Summer Scholars Program will receive payment. Scholars receive a stipend of $4000 with responsibility for finding and paying for housing; or a stipend of $2500 with on campus housing provided.

Apply

The application process for the 2022 Summer Scholars Program will open on October 15, 2021. The application deadline will be December 15, 2021. Admissions decisions will be communicated to applicants by February 15, 2022.

Please note: international applicants must currently study full time at a US institution, and hold a valid F1 or J1 visa both at the time of application and during the program dates, June  - August, 2022. Our program cannot sponsor visas at this time.

A complete application must include:

  • Application form: The online application form will soon be available.
  • Personal statement: A one-page summary of your educational program objectives and your long-range professional goals. Describe research, educational and personal experiences that you consider relevant to your career goals. Please prepare in PDF format.
  • Transcripts: We require transcripts from each college or university you have attended. Unofficial transcripts or a PDF copy of official transcripts are acceptable.
  • Letters of Recommendation: Use individuals who can make the most meaningful comments about your qualifications for a career in your chosen field of study. Two to three letters should be submitted via the application portal, directly by your recommenders.
  • Resume: A resume should include: academic and professional honors, work experience, volunteer experience, and leadership experience. Please prepare in PDF format.

The application and supporting documents must be submitted electronically by the December 15th application deadline. Late materials will not be accepted. If you have questions or concerns related to the application process, please contact Ms. Brynn Wilkins, Undergraduate Program Coordinator, at bww57 [at] cornell.edu.

Alumni

Since the inception of the program in 2000, over two hundred students have participated in the ten-week research opportunity.

Program alumni represent over 60 universities and almost 20 nationalities.

Scholars have had the opportunity to perform research in one of the many specializations within food science ranging from "The Study of Antioxidant Characteristics of Vegetables" to "Characterization of Bacterial Species Responsible for Limiting Conventionally Pasteurized Fluid Milk Shelf Lives."

Summer Scholar Alumni & Projects

  • Hannibal Brooks
    • University: Mississippi State University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Martin Wiedmann
    • Project: Characterization of psychrotolerant behavior in Paenibacillus spp.
  • Malcolm Brooks
    • University: Mississippi State University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carmen Moraru
    • Project: Forward osmosis concentration of milk
  • Kabreshia Cheatom
    • University: Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Terry Acree
    • Project: Defining the odor image of the potato chip
  • Kenton Hipsher
    • University: Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology
    • Major: Biology
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Randy Worobo
    • Project: Tracking postharvest spoilage of strawberry products from the field through the end of shelf life
  • Yiling Ke
    • University: Oklahoma State University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Elad Tako
    • Project: In vivo assessment of the effects of phytochemicals (pectin, petic-oligosaccharides, arbinana and starch) on the intestinal brush border membrane functionality and beneficial bacteria populations
  • Kate Pinsley
    • University: Montclair State University
    • Major: Biochemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Olga Padilla-Zakour
    • Project: Developing a sports drink from Greek yogurt by-product: Where there's a will, there's a whey
  • Melissa Rooney
    • University: Lawrence University
    • Major: Chemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Gavin Sacks
    • Project: Qualitative study of reduced aromas in wine using gas chromatography-olfactometry
  • Joao Paulo Almeida Lima
    • University: Universidade Federal Rural do Rio de Janeiro
    • Major: Food Engineering
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carmen Moraru
    • Project: Quantification of bacterial spore removal from milk using cold microfiltration
  • Andreea Beldie
    • University: Polytechnic University of Bucharest
    • Major: Food Engineering
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carmen Moraru
    • Project: Rheological properties of heat treated pea protein concentrates
  • Elle Friedberg
    • University: Wellesley College
    • Major: Chemistry & Studio Art
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Gavin Sacks
    • Project: Effect of elemental sulfur and yeast strain on hydrogen sulfide production in wine post-bottling
  • Ioan Gitsov
    • University: Rochester Institute of Technology
    • Major: Chemical Engineering
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carmen Moraru
    • Project: Effect of pore size on flux and composition of skim milk submitted to cold microfiltration
  • Marriah Green
    • University: University of California, San Diego
    • Major: Biochemistry/Chemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Elad Tako
    • Project: Assessing the effects of plant prebiotics on the small intestinal brush border membrane functionality and bacteria populations
  • Molly Higgins
    • University: University of Missouri
    • Major: Food Science and Nutrition
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Martin Wiedmann
    • Project: Investigation of bacteriophage resistance in Listeria monocytogenes
  • Janeth Perez Garza
    • University: Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon
    • Major: Chemistry Bacteriology Parasitology
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Randy Worobo
    • Project: Heterologous expression of the Bacillus thuringiensis SF361 protein, YvgO
  • Meaghan Sugrue
    • University: Cornell University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Olga Padilla-Zakour
    • Project: Optimizing tannin content, sweetness and carbonation of cider made from dessert apples for consumer acceptability
  • Naa Ayikarkor Ankrah
    • University: Mount Holyoke College
    • Major: Chemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Elad Tako
    • Project: Assessing the effect of soybean isoflavones (daidzein and metabolites) on the intestinal brush border membrane functionality and beneficial bacteria populations.
  • Madeleine Bee
    • University: American University
    • Major: Chemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Gavin Sacks
    • Project: Determining volatile acidity in wines through acetic acid gas detection tubes
  • Avery Becker
    • University: Ithaca College
    • Major: Biochemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Martin Wiedmann
    • Project: Assessing antibiotic susceptibility of L. monocytogenes directed by alternative σ factor regulation
  • Jie Cheng
    • University: Bryn Mawr College
    • Major: Chemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Martin Wiedmann
    • Project: Identifying the cold growth of Paenibacillus and Bacillus in milk
  • Luis Fernando Paulatti Marostegan
    • University: University of Sao Paulo at Pirassununga
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carment Moraru
    • Project: Effectiveness of Pulsed Light treatment combined with antimicrobials nisin and natamycin on the inactivation of Listeria innocua on cheese surface
  • Maxwell Holle
    • University: Monmouth College
    • Major: Biochemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Olga Padilla-Zakour
    • Project: Sensory evaluation and instrumental modeling as tools for evaluating consumer acceptability and processing behavior of food products
  • Emily Mishina
    • University: University of Hawaii
    • Major: Microbiology
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Randy Worobo
    • Project: Characterizing antifungal mechanisms by assessing cellular viability
  • Anissa Taylor
    • University: Alabama A&M University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carmen Moraru
    • Project: Bactericidal effect of a 405-nm light-emitting diode array on foodborne microorganisms Escherichia coli and Pseudomonas fluorescens
  • Hannah Acheson-Field
    • University: Brown University
    • Major: Computational Biology
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Raymond Glahn and Dr. Elad Tako
    • Project: The Isotopic Equilibrium of Intrinsic and Extrinsically Labeled Iron in Bean, Lentil, and Maize Varieties
  • Helen Bunker
    • University: Carnegie Mellon University
    • Major: Chemical Engineering
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Syed Rizvi
    • Project: Comparative strategies of reduction of pectin methyl esterase in orange juice using supercritical carbon dioxide treatments
  • Ellen Hallberg
    • University: Indiana University Bloomington
    • Major: Biology
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Anna Katharine Mansfield
    • Project: Characterization and retention of natural and commercial tannin mixtures in aromatic white wines
  • Paola M. Illas-Ortiz
    • University: University of Puerto Rico-Mayagüez Campus
    • Major: Industrial Microbiology
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Martin Wiedmann
    • Project: Prevalence, Persistence, and Diversity of Listeria in Spinach Fields from Planting to Harvest
  • Sarah Kozak
    • University: Cornell University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Martin Wiedmann and Nicole Martin
    • Project: Characterization of organisms isolates from fluid milk and cultured dairy products
  • Rafael Y Nieves-Beltrán
    • Inter American University of Puerto Rico, Bayamon campus
    • Major: Industrial Chemistry
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Olga Padilla-Zakour
    • Project: Effect of bottle type and product temperature on the lethality values achieved by hot-filling a model beverage using an apple/carrot juice blend
  • Karine Paradis
    • University: McGill University, Montreal, Canada
    • Major: Food Science and Nutritional Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Carmen Moraru
    • Project: Reduction of Listeria innocua on the surface of processed cheese after exposure to Pulsed Light Treatment
  • Larissa Pereira Gonçalves
    • University: Universidade de Brasília - Brazil
    • Major: Nutrition
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Raymond Glahn and Dr. Elad Tako
    • Project: Intra-amniotic administration of prebiotics affects the iron status and intestinal microbiota of iron-deficient broiler (Gallus gallus) hatchling
  • Sara Spoede
    • University: University of Missouri-Columbia
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Olga Padilla-Zakour
    • Project: Effect of Temperature and Ingredient Ratio on Hummus Viscosity
  • Jerry Thomas Jr.
    • University: Alabama A&M University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Gavin Sacks and Patricia A. Howe
    • Project: Improved Ways to Rapidly Measure Free SO2 in Wines
  • Jenny (Jingxin) Tian
    • University: McGill University, Montreal, Canada
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Rui Hai Liu
    • Project: Ursolic Acid Exhibited Anticancer Activity through Regulating the p38/MAPK Signaling Transduction Pathway
  • Kenneth G. Vogel
    • University: The Pennsylvania State University
    • Major: Food Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Randy Worobo
    • Project: Determining critical parameters for tempeh production to control the growth of foodborne pathogens
  • Mary Xia
    • University: University of Pennsylvania
    • Major: Biology, Computer Science
    • Faculty Mentor: Dr. Robin Dando
    • Project: Effects of Diet-Restriction on mRNA Expression in Mice Taste Buds

FAQ

I am not a food science major, may I still apply?

Yes, we strongly encourage non-food science majors to apply!

I am a senior and will be graduating before summer, may I still apply?

We are only accepting applications from sophomores and juniors at this time.

Is there a minimum GPA requirement to apply?

We do not have a specific GPA cutoff, but we do prefer to see applicants with a 3.0 (out of 4) GPA or above. Admission decisions are made based on the contents of the entire application.

I am not a US citizen, may I still apply?

We are currently accepting applications from international students who are currently studying full time at a US institution, and hold a valid F1 or J1 visa both at the time of application and during the program dates, June 1 - August 7, 2020.

Are TOEFL scores required for international applicants?

No, we do not require TOEFL scores although a basic proficiency of English is essential.

How are admission decisions determined?

All applications will be reviewed by an Admission Committee and decisions will be based on the entire application including grades, letters of recommendation, leadership qualities, and prior experiences (although prior research experience is NOT required). Successful applicants will be assigned, by the same committee, to a lab. Lab assignments will be determined by interests.

Do I need to bring my computer?

No, the lab you work in will most likely have a computer that you will be able to use (you should check with your faculty mentor to make sure). You may bring a laptop with you; however, it is not necessary.

Do I need my car?

Public transportation is available via the TCAT around Ithaca, and most Scholars do not need cars while in Ithaca.

Should I contact my faculty mentor before I arrive?

Yes, you will be given your faculty mentor's contact information in your admission decision letter, if you are selected to participate.

How will I be paid?

Accepted applicants will receive specific stipend information before the beginning of the program.

Still have questions?

If you have questions that are not answered on this page, please contact bww57 [at] cornell.edu