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New York University

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Date: Jun 16 2006
Major: Nutrition (This Major's Salary over time)
The food studies and food management masters program at NYU is a program without serious committment of resources on the part of the university. As a result it lacks the breadth and scope one would come to expect from such a prestigious institution. It is promoted as a complete program with numerous and diverse career opportunities. The reality is that the depth of inquiry in most of the management oriented courses is very light. For those desiring a more rigorous approach, there are some courses available at the Stern business school, but coordination between the departments is non-existent and curriculum advisement is all but missing. There are no outplacement services available to graduates, and one is routinely advised to seek out internships. There is a listserve on which some opportunties are posted, but these are overwhelmingly dedicated to placing dieticians and nutritionists, and have specific curricular and experiential requirments. With the number of hotels, corporate dining rooms, restaurants and other venues serving food in the greater NYC area, one would think that there would be a healthy number of industry connections and corresponding opportunties for graduates. On a yearly basis there may be 15 opportunities posted, with half being internships at no pay.

The program's strength may be in the public health and food policy areas, but opportunties are few and far between.

If you are looking for a meaningful position in the food industry and want to get the best "bang for the buck" consider another school such as the Frech Culinary Institute, the Institute of Culinary Education, or City University of NY - all have recognized programs and strong alumni associations and are well networked in the food industry in and around NYC. On the other hand, if you have $50K burning an hole in your pocket and have a significant other to support your academic pursuits go right ahead. Just don't expect much at the tail end of the process, then you won't be disappointed. By the way, after going on nearly 3 dozen interviews since May 2004, I have yet to come across anyone who knows that such a program exists, much less what it entails and how it prepares the job candidate for the position.

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