Food Matters

Food Matters


Academic Team:
Stephen Wooten (
First-Year Experience Seminar Instructor
Izabelle Zelinski (
FIG Assistant

9 credits

UGST 109 First Year Experience Seminar – 1 Credit 

CRN: 16259: F: 12:00 – 1:20 PM, LIB 132 

ENVS 225 Introduction to Food Studies – 4 credits 

CRN: 15955: MW: 2:00 – 3:20 PM, CHA 220, +DIS CRN: 15960: T: 1:00 –1:50 PM, LLCN 125 

HIST 215 Food in World History – 4 credits 

CRN: 12498: TR: 2:00 – 3:20 PM, MCK 129, +DIS CRN: 12500: F: 9:00 – 9:50 AM, MCK 121 

About the FIG:

“Come to the table” to see food is an amazingly powerful part of social and cultural life, not just calories to fuel our bodies! In this FIG you will learn how the study of food can help you understand some of the key challenges and opportunities facing humanity. Learn through visits to restaurants, markets, food pantries and gardens! 

Deep-Dive FIG: This FIG is part of the food cluster, which includes multiple field trips and hands-on events. This course has been vetted by First Year Programs to ensure first-term students can achieve success. The instructor will be available to assist students along the way.

ENVS 225 Introduction to Food Studies - CoreEd or major satisfying course

An exploration of the field of "food studies" and examination of the role of food in historical and contemporary life in the US and around the world.

HIST 215 Food in World History - CoreEd or major satisfying course

Food has been a defining part of human experience since the dawn of humanity. The diverse plants and animals available to humans for domestication in distinct parts of the world have fundamentally shaped the cultures of each region. Foods and eating practices have also been intertwined with religious beliefs and have become integral to cultural systems and national identities. The cultivation of food crops and livestock, the marketing and processing of foods, and food and beverage consumption have linked households with regional, national, and global economies and with the natural environment in historically specific ways. Practices of food preparation and eating have often structured or illustrated gender and class relations. Simultaneously universal and historically conditioned, food thus offers an ideal vantage point for exploring relationships among culture, economy, environment, and society in world history. These subjects, all of which figure in the course, correspond to several of the university's General Education goals, including those connected to moral beliefs, the nature of the historical past and its connections with the present, the diversity of human experience, and the impact of technology.

Meet your FIG Assistant and Instructor!