In a moment where his career prospects became stagnant—David Gill decided to make a move for his future.
“At the time I felt like my career prospects were a little stagnant and having an advanced degree would help create further opportunities for me down the road,” Gill said.
Gill chose to pursue a Master’s in Food Technology at UGA after realizing the program catered to full-time workers and those with a passion for food science.
Gill majored in Professional Sales at Kennesaw State. For the past eight years he worked with companies in the food industry, before he worked in sales for 10 years. Currently, Gill sells starch and maltodextrin for Grain Processing Corporation, a leading manufacturer and worldwide marketer of corn-based products located in Iowa.
Gill offered a reality check for future online students to help them prepare for what’s ahead. “It takes 11 classes to earn your degree. Count them down as you finish. You will not have any control of your free time while you are working on your degree. Some weeks the load is light and others you will barely get through your assignments to turn in on time,” Gill said.
In further advice to online students, he recommends emailing your teacher if “life events pop up.” Working closely with his online instructors, Gill made it through a divorce, started a new job, and took a couple of 2 week vacations out of the country while completing his degree.
One of the more fascinating concepts he learned about was water activity—the concept explains how processed foods are able to stay shelf stable without moisture migration. The online graduate courses in the program greatly expanded Gill’s knowledge base in food science in a very applicable way.
“When I meet with customers I now have a broader understanding of how they are processing their products which helps me to ask better questions so I can understand the issues they are facing and I am able to make suggestions to improve their product or save them money.”
The online Master of Food Technology degree made Gill a more valuable employee to the company he works for and opened doors for more advancements in his career. Eventually he envisions an international move to South East Asia where he’d like to apply his food science knowledge to manage a business unit for a food company there.