Office of Public Affairs

USM Food Studies Program launch event POSTPONED until March 21

UPDATE 2/8: The celebration of USM's new Food Studies Program has been rescheduled to Tuesday, March 21 from 5-7pm, on the 7th floor of the Glickman Family Library, due to weather. The event was originally scheduled to take place on Thursday, Feb. 9. 

The University of Southern Maine will celebrate its new Food Studies Program with a March 21 launch on the Portland Campus.

Speaking at the 5 p.m. celebration are USM President Glenn Cummings; Michael Hillard, the new program's executive director; Kristin Reynolds, a visiting scholar to USM and the co-author of "Beyond the Kale: Urban Agriculture and Social Justice Activism in New York City;" and Kristen Miale, president of Good Shepherd Food Bank. 

The new program will give students an understanding of the social, economic and environmental issues affecting local, national and global food systems. It will also develop students' abilities to apply their knowledge of food systems to professional challenges including in business and entrepreneurship, policy work that promotes social and environmental justice, hospitality, and other food-related settings.

The Food Studies Program began with the start of the new semester on Jan. 17.

New classes this Spring include "Food and the Environment," "Food, Power and Social Justice," "Food: History, Culture, Politics," "Introduction to Food Systems," and "New England Foodscapes."

"USM is excited to inaugurate this new program and to play a key role in supporting Maine's dynamic food economy and food culture," Hillard said.

The Food Studies Program is currently offering a Food Studies Minor. Undergraduate and graduate internships begin in the Fall of 2017. In the Spring of 2018, the university will unveil a graduate certificate program and graduate-level coursework in support of multiple Master's programs, including Social Work and Business Administration.