Culinology - September 2017 - 24

Those who
can, teach
Culinology
Florida International University professor Dr. Michael Cheng
on shaping the next generation of Culinology professionals
by Susan Malovany
editor@sosland.com

"B

ecoming a teacher was an accident,"
admits Florida International University's
(FIU) associate professor/director of food and
beverage programs, Michael Cheng, Ph.D.
"I taught my first class as an adjunct
instructor when there was a last-minute vacancy at Metropolitan Community College,
Omaha, and thought to myself, 'this isn't so
bad!'"
Now, at FIU's Miami, Fla. campus, Dr.
Cheng implements Culinology and food science as an academic program, along with
oversight of the food and beverage programs at its Chaplin
School of Hospitality and
Tourism Management.
He also serves as the
primary faculty contact
to the food and beverage industry for the
school, and currently
teaches a graduate
restaurant development
course every semester.
Prior to FIU, he taught
at Southwest Minnesota
State University (SMSU),
Marshall, Minn., and served as
chair and director of its Department

Photos by: Lazaro Gonzalez, FIU Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management

24 |

Culinology | SEPTEMBER 2017

of Culinology and Hospitality Management.
"I have been teaching since 1998, and I
love it," he said.
His interactions with students and seeing
them grow has been so rewarding that it motivated him to help them more and advance
his own career in academia. "I have not had
the desire to leave higher education, and truly
enjoy my current 'hybrid' role of faculty and
administrator," he said. "I tried being a college
administrator for two years, and didn't enjoy
it as I no longer had any interactions with
students."
Students are particularly drawn to the creativity of Culinology, he said. "It is that magical moment when they grasp why we need
to brush butter on the inside of a pie crust or
why we need to leave an air gap when hotfilling a jelly product that makes [students]
more excited about Culinology."

A pioneer in Culinology education
Dr. Cheng said it has been rewarding -
though not without its challenges - to guide
the Research Chefs Association (RCA) in developing Culinology as a formal subject, but
the fruits of his labors are evident.
"I implemented the first Culinology program
at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, started
my own at SMSU, guided the establish-



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Culinology - September 2017

Culinology - September 2017
Table of Contents
President's Letter - Big ideas in Culinology
Emerging Trends - Taking sausage to the next level
Flavor Trends - Condiment creations - What's next?
Ingredient Trends - The seeds of beverage innovation
Campbell moves beyond pea soup
A broader market for plant protein
Member Profile - Those who can, teach Culinology
Sage advice from the professor
Expert Voices - Futuristic 'clean meat'
Food safety - High-pressure processing evolves
Industry News
Petits Fours
News Bites
Ad Index
Culinology - September 2017 - Table of Contents
Culinology - September 2017 - 2
Culinology - September 2017 - 3
Culinology - September 2017 - President's Letter - Big ideas in Culinology
Culinology - September 2017 - 5
Culinology - September 2017 - Emerging Trends - Taking sausage to the next level
Culinology - September 2017 - 7
Culinology - September 2017 - 8
Culinology - September 2017 - 9
Culinology - September 2017 - Flavor Trends - Condiment creations - What's next?
Culinology - September 2017 - 11
Culinology - September 2017 - 12
Culinology - September 2017 - 13
Culinology - September 2017 - 14
Culinology - September 2017 - 15
Culinology - September 2017 - 16
Culinology - September 2017 - 17
Culinology - September 2017 - Ingredient Trends - The seeds of beverage innovation
Culinology - September 2017 - 19
Culinology - September 2017 - Campbell moves beyond pea soup
Culinology - September 2017 - 21
Culinology - September 2017 - A broader market for plant protein
Culinology - September 2017 - 23
Culinology - September 2017 - Member Profile - Those who can, teach Culinology
Culinology - September 2017 - 25
Culinology - September 2017 - 26
Culinology - September 2017 - 27
Culinology - September 2017 - Sage advice from the professor
Culinology - September 2017 - 29
Culinology - September 2017 - Expert Voices - Futuristic 'clean meat'
Culinology - September 2017 - 31
Culinology - September 2017 - 32
Culinology - September 2017 - 33
Culinology - September 2017 - 34
Culinology - September 2017 - 35
Culinology - September 2017 - 36
Culinology - September 2017 - Food safety - High-pressure processing evolves
Culinology - September 2017 - 38
Culinology - September 2017 - 39
Culinology - September 2017 - Industry News
Culinology - September 2017 - 41
Culinology - September 2017 - 42
Culinology - September 2017 - 43
Culinology - September 2017 - 44
Culinology - September 2017 - 45
Culinology - September 2017 - Petits Fours
Culinology - September 2017 - 47
Culinology - September 2017 - 48
Culinology - September 2017 - News Bites
Culinology - September 2017 - Ad Index
Culinology - September 2017 - 51
Culinology - September 2017 - 52
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