Kansas State University


Food Science Institute

Alumni Spotlight: Paul Lewis

by Maggie Stanton


Food Science alumni Paul Lewis began his K-State journey as a biology major. A degree in food science and industry certainly wasn’t what he had in mind when he first arrived on campus. In fact, if it wasn’t for the encouragement of his fraternity brothers, Lewis said he probably never would’ve majored in food science and industry in the first place.

Paul LewisInitially, Lewis said he hadn’t considered a program within the College of Agriculture because he hadn’t grown up on a farm and had little exposure to the industry. However, Lewis encourages those who are unfamiliar with agriculture to check out the food science and industry major, as there’s so much opportunity within the field. For Lewis in particular, it’s led him to the University of Nebraska Medical Center where he is currently studying in the College of Dentistry.

Lewis said the science-oriented aspect of food science and industry is what drew him into the program. “I liked the aspect of food science in that it was an applied science and I could see it used on a more everyday basis,” said Lewis. “I really enjoyed my time and the courses within food science. I found the curriculum very interesting.”

One of the challenges that came with switching his major was making sure his courses aligned with both food science and industry and pre-health. Lewis encourages students to take the same level of caution when choosing their courses so every requirement is met.

Pre-health and food science and industry may seem like an odd combination, but Lewis said that the same fraternity brothers who encouraged him to switch to food science and industry also had a pre-health focus. Two went onto medical school, and one is now in optometry school.

The community at K-State was also a big factor for Lewis. He said he’s noticed he speaks more fondly of his undergraduate experience than his dental school peers do, thanks in part to the accepting environment that allows students to flourish.

While he toured other universities with pre-health focuses, Lewis said the expensive equipment and lavish buildings couldn’t compare to the support network found at K-State. Said Lewis, “When you graduate, you don’t take the buildings with you, you take the relationships you’ve made.”


To learn more about a degree in food science and industry, please click here.

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