Cal Poly Pomona

Why This Major


Martin F. Sancho-Madriz, Professor, Department Chair and FST Program Director

Lisa Kessler, Assistant Professor & Didactic Program Director

Wayne R. Bidlack, Professor

Mark S. Meskin, Professor Emeritus

Bonny Burns-Whitmore, Associate Professor & Graduate Coordinator

Sharonda Wallace, Assistant Professor

Kara Caldwell-Freeman, Professor and Dietetic Internship Directore

The major was established in fall 1999 in response to increasing

demands from the fast-growing Southern California food industry for

food scientists and technologists. It allows students to apply knowledge

from basic disciplines such as chemistry, microbiology, physics and

engineering to different areas of Food Science and Technology such as

food chemistry, food processing, sensory evaluation, food analysis,

product development, packaging, and food safety among others.

Competencies in these areas enable graduates to succeed in the food

industry as well as in local and federal governmental agencies as they

face challenges in food manufacturing, research and development,

quality control, food regulations, and marketing.

The Food Science and Technology (FST) Bachelor of Science curriculum

at Cal Poly Pomona is an interdisciplinary program that draws faculty

and courses from Human Nutrition and Food Science, and other science,

applied science, and business programs. Students have the option of

choosing science and technology, business, culinology®, or preprofessional

(for students interested in pre-vet, pre-med or pre-dental

academics) tracks while moving through a curriculum designed to meet

the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) undergraduate standards and

guidelines. Students will be able to tailor the program to their general

interests and career goals by choosing one of the following career


Science and Technology

This track emphasizes learning scientific concepts with the

application of technology. It provides the opportunity to expand

beyond the background provided by the core courses of the major.

This track is for students interested in pursuing a master’s and/or a

doctoral program in a science or technology field in the future. In

addition, this track provides additional background for research and

development jobs in industry and the public sector and it will

prepare one to become a food chemist, food microbiologist, or a

food processing technologist. By carefully selecting electives,

students may also earn a minor in chemistry, microbiology, or foods

and nutrition.


This track applies food science and technology knowledge to

marketing and entrepreneurship. With a science and technology

foundation and an emphasis in business, students can successfully

compete for food industry jobs in project management, technical

sales, marketing and advertising. This track is designed for students

interested in pursuing a Master of Business administration (MBA)

program later on.


Culinology is a trademark of the Research Chefs Association (RCA).

This track is one of few programs approved by RCA in the U.S. The

curriculum blends food science and culinary arts and will provide

tools to successfully develop new foods for retail and food service

consumption. This track is particularly attractive to those interested

in product development. Students will receive a bachelor’s degree in

Food Science and Technology under the Institute of Food

Technologists’ guidelines while taking a number of courses in

Culinary Arts.


The Pre-professional track prepares students for a degree in Food

Science and Technology while preparing them to enter veterinary,

medical, and other professional graduate programs. With a

professional degree in veterinary sciences, an undergraduate

degree in FST will prepare students to be successful in jobs related

to inspection, safety, and processing of animal foods.