Brenda Metro - Food Engineering Student


Why I chose FABE

I chose to specialize in food engineering because I want to pursue a career path in food quality. My inspiration comes from the growing instances of foodborne illnesses, and I want to do my part in assuring that food products are safe, healthy, and delicious. When I applied to attend the Ohio State University, I knew that the food engineering program in the FABE department would prepare me to pursue my goals. During my time here, I have made great friends, had the pleasure of working with amazing professors and faculty, and been able to pursue many enriching opportunities. I have studied abroad in Germany, completed a minor in German, and maintained an active role in Engineering Ambassadors and Women in Engineering here on campus. As a result of its smaller size, the FABE department provides more individualized attention and hands-on learning, providing its students with a richer overall educational experience. Coming to OSU from my home state of Pennsylvania and studying food engineering was definitely the right choice for me.

Internship

Operations Management Trainee Internship, Nestlé

After my junior year, I interned with Nestlé’s Ice Cream Division in southern California as an OMT intern. I am pleased to say that this internship far exceeded all of my expectations. The facility I was assigned to was undergoing a major transition at the time, which provided me with the opportunity to take on challenges outside of what is typically expected from interns. As such, I played a key role in updating our quality monitoring procedures and training our operators on the changes in their daily activities. I also fully implemented a new sensory test, which required me to prepare numerous training documents, write many standard operating procedures, and to conduct over 60 man hours of training. In addition, I was able to give back to the local community through a month long food drive that I implemented. I gave presentations to all of our shifts and encouraged everyone’s involvement with a positive attitude and weekly raffles. In the end, we received 636 pounds of food! Throughout my internship, I was able to interact with Nestle management on many levels and with our operators. By the end of my internship, I couldn’t go anywhere in the facility without greeting a familiar face; and I look forward to visiting my TOC family again in the future.

Research

During my sophomore year, I began working on a research project in the FABE department. My work focused on constructing a system to produce encapsulated microparticles. While microencapsulation technology has numerous potential applications in both the food and medical industries, the particles I was producing were intended to be feed for fish larvae. The idea was to reduce feed losses while improving the yields in fish raising operations by encapsulating feed in a hydrostatic gel. Building this system introduced me to the process of conducting research and gave me the opportunity to learn more than I could have ever expected to in my classes alone. This experience incited my curiosity, challenged my creativity, and above all taught me how to methodically overcome obstacles.