Urbana, Ill. – Fifty-six youth from across Illinois got a hands-on look at a future in food science at a recent 4-H Food with Food Science virtual workshop held Feb. 16. In this interactive experience, youth were able to work with food scientist and 4-H alum, Linda Perucca, to learn more about food science, how it relates to everything we eat, and take part in an optional food science ice cream experiment right from home.
“As an experienced food scientist, I have enjoyed a wonderful full career and because of this, I want to share the possibilities of a career in the Food and Beverage Industry with future professionals,” says Perucca, who currently owns a food science consulting company and is chair of the Chicagoland Food Science Foundation. “Being a past 4-Her myself, I also felt great pride in reciting once again the 4-H pledge at the start of the program. It took me back to my 4-H years.”
Perucca has over 30 years’ experience in the food science industry and has worked in new product development, quality improvements, and productivity margin improvements. Her career has taken her all over the US, Canada, Europe, Brazil, and China.
4-H events are designed for fun and learning, but also to make an impact. 98% of youth surveyed learned something new that sparked an interest in food science and 85% of youth surveyed said they were likely to explore a Food Science project to continue learning after attending the event.
“It was thrilling to see the excitement from the kids during the workshop,” says Perucca. “All the questions they had confirmed their curious minds were fully engaged. I hope that it sparked an interest in the kids to take the Food Science project and potentially consider the Food and Beverage Industry as their career.”
This webinar is part of the Explore 4-H series which consists of virtual statewide experiences for 4-H members to learn more about different areas of interest. Those who wish to learn more may visit the Illinois 4-H website.
About Illinois 4-H: Illinois 4-H is the flagship youth development program of University of Illinois Extension and administered through the College of Agriculture, Consumer, and Environmental Sciences. 4-H grows true leaders, youth who are empowered for life today and prepared for a career tomorrow. The hands-on approach in 4-H gives young people guidance, tools, and encouragement, and then puts them in the driver’s seat to make great things happen. Independent research confirms the unparalleled impact of the 4-H experience, demonstrating that young people are four times more likely to contribute to their communities, two times more likely to make healthier choices, two times more likely to be civically active, and two times more likely to participate in STEM programs.
About Extension: Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.
For Further Information Contact:
Source: Susan Sloop, University of Illinois Extension Youth Development Educator, firstname.lastname@example.org
News Writer: Carissa Nelson, 4-H Media Communications Manager, University of Illinois Extension, email@example.com
Illinois Extension leads public outreach for University of Illinois by translating research into action plans that allow Illinois families, businesses, and community leaders to solve problems, make informed decisions, and adapt to changes and opportunities.