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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences



Talia Katz talia m. Katz

School of Environment and Natural Resources
Food Science and Technology
Deerfield, IL

2024 Distinguished Senior Award Recognition Reception Program (.pdf) 

2024 Distinguished Senior Award Recipient Reception Poster (.pdf) 

Food Science and Technology major Talia Katz stretched beyond her comfort zone, took risks and opened herself to opportunities to create a successful college career. She said, “I have learned that you never know what an opportunity could bring.” Talia worked as a student associate in the Food Science and Technology department, making connections with food science faculty, and getting involved with the department.

Her greatest sense of accomplishment has come from conducting research “alongside graduate students” which encouraged her to “think at a more critical level.” She also participated in three internships, one of which is currently underway. Talia spent a summer at the J.M. Smucker Company in Orrville, Ohio, as a product research and development intern. She contributed to test platforms to gather information about products for the Pet Research & Development team.

Talia joined the Food Science Student Undergraduate Research Experience (FoodS.U.R.E.) program, working with a team of researchers in the Sensory Lab. They used eye tracking technology to study consumer patterns of discarding food. This research resulted in her first publication, “When considering whether to waste food, consumers focus attention on food label dates rather than phrases,” in Waste Management Journal. She won first and second place, respectively, in the CFAES and FoodS.U.R.E. research poster competitions and will graduate with research distinction.

Her summer in Tel Aviv, Israel, as an intern for the non-profit StartUpRoots, was one of her most insightful undergraduate opportunities. Talia assisted StartUpRoots in revitalizing their student educational programs. She visited low-income schools and spoke with kids to develop better lessons about nutrition, food science, and food waste.

As a junior, Talia began working in Dr. Rafael Jimenez-Flores’s lab, and now serves as an intern for the American Dairy Association–Mideast (ADA). Her independent study looks at the effects of salts on butter oil as well as utilizing Kefir grains in butter. Technically, her work is understanding the crystallization of anhydrous milk fat and corn oil using NMR, calorimetry, and chemical analysis techniques. She will present the results of her study in May to local dairy farmers and the ADA board of directors. Talia appreciates the support and guidance of her mentor, Dr. Rafael Jimenez-Flores. His open-door policy allowed her to feel confident asking questions.

In addition to research and industry experiences, Talia served as a Food Science Peer Mentor, guiding first-year students; an Ambassador for CFAES, representing the community and sharing the values of the college. As the product development liaison for the OSU Food Science club, Talia shared her enthusiasm for product development competitions and served as a resource to build winning teams to compete in IFT, ADA, and other product development competitions.

Talia plans to attend graduate school to get a master’s degree in food science and technology after graduation.

Service, involvement, and accolades: Food Science Club, product development liaison | CFAES Ambassador

Talia Katz - Press Release

Talia Katz - Photo Album