The Gastronomy Program looks forward to welcoming these new students for the upcoming semester.
Rachel Anderson eats until unhealthily full and no longer fights the gravitational pull towards authentic meals in divey locations. She’s an experience enthusiast- a doer, connecter, under committed runner, cocktail drinker, and seeker.
A mash-up of Colorado and Illinois, Rachel has a degree in Anthropology from University of Colorado and a background in sales, social media, and market research in food and beverage. She’s headed to Boston by way of Chicago.
Rachel intends to use her time at BU as an incubator for ideas: to study the anthropological influences on eating and design a role that incorporates technology, consumer behavior and marketplace trends in driving brand strategy, product development, and innovation.
Anna Lisa D. Ferrante was born and raised in Portland, ME, to Italian immigrant parents, and has spent most of her life traveling and eating. She’s spent months at a time visiting her family’s hometown in the mountains of Abruzzo, exploring both her grandfather’s farm and the traditions of the area. She received her B.A. in History from the University of New England in Biddeford, ME, and credits her time there for leading her to BU and Gastronomy. In Spring 2013, she studied in Florence, where she took wine tasting and cooking classes. It is there she developed an interest in historical cookbooks, exploring the worlds of Bartolomeo Scappi and others involved in renaissance cooking. When she returned home, her advisor recommended her to an internship at Rabelais Books, a store specializing in rare and antique cookbooks and culinary ephemera in Biddeford, ME. Her access to an endless supply of archival material helped her write an undergraduate senior thesis exploring the evolution of lobster and clambakes in nineteenth century New England, analyzing its use in cookbooks, advertisements, and tourism. In Spring 2014, she spent two weeks in London, and managed to “eat the empire.” Her travels have also led her to Belgium, France, Monaco, Germany, and the Czech Republic. Anna Lisa is a firm believer that throughout history, one verifiable constant between cultures in consumption. She hopes to use her Gastronomy education to explore how what we eat reflects our culture and has shaped history, and can’t wait to get her hands back on archival materials.
Selena Given is excited to be joining the BU Gastronomy community this autumn to engage and learn beside students and professors who share the same love of food. When Selena is not wining, dining, cooking or talking about her culinary experiences, she spends her daytime working downtown Boston in the financial services industry (although she can certainly can be found chatting about food at work, too!). Selena has worked in financial services since graduating from Converse College in South Carolina with a B.S. in Finance and International Business.
Growing up was, invariably, cleaning up the cake batter bowl and spoon, dancing and singing in the kitchen with her grandmother while making Sunday lunch, always trying to play hostess (with the ‘most-est’) at her parents’ dinner parties. She discovered a love for Scottish Smoked Salmon as a wee one and other delights quickly fell into the “champagne tastes” category, much to the chagrin of her father’s wallet! In addition to the sensory delights and nutritional necessity food provides, Selena values how it draws people together, no matter the culture, and is a medium for conversation, celebration, and memory making — whether it be family, friends or strangers.
Selena is happiest when embarking on new adventures — be it a foreign land, the latest intriguing local restaurant, or a simple recipe — but never more so than when she can share her experiences with her friends and family. The Gastronomy program is her next exiting adventure, and Selena is thrilled to have the opportunity to explore the world of gastronomy with fellow students, expand her breadth of knowledge and immerse herself in her passion.
Chidpim Saelee was born in Bangkok, Thailand, but as with Thai tradition, all of her friends know her by her nickname, Tatee. She attended boarding school in Connecticut and received a degree in business administration from Babson College nearby Boston in June 2011. Since graduating, she has been mostly working in Thailand and Myanmar in her family businesses, including a number of fine dining restaurants in Bangkok. Earlier this year, she attended the Intensive Sommelier program at the International Culinary Center in New York where she really enjoyed studying and tasting wines. Through the gastronomy program at BU, she hopes to be able to combine her love of food and wine with her interest in business.
Kendall Vanderslice is a pastry chef and writer intrigued by the intersection of food and culture. This passion has taken her around the world — volunteering as a baker and barista on a hospital ship in West Africa, learning traditional food preparation methods while studying in Tanzania, working as a baker at a small café in Chicago and a pastry chef in the farm-filled suburbs of Boston. After studying Anthropology at Wheaton College, she decided to leave the Midwest to explore food along the East Coast. She currently works on the pastry team at Sofra Bakery and as a food contributor at Inspire52.com. Follow her ventures at AVandersliceoftheSweetLife.com.”
Growing up outside of Philadelphia, a town with a thriving culinary scene, Kate Weissman has always had an appreciation for good food. After studying abroad in France, she grew a deeper understanding of food cultures around the world. She graduated from Dickinson College in 2007 and went into event fundraising. While she enjoyed raising money for good causes, she craved a position in the food industry. She began working at a public relations firm representing a fast food chain. Here, she learned about the quick service restaurant industry, and the challenges it faces.
Kate moved to Boston in 2011 to work at Weber Shandwick, representing various food/beverage brands such as S.Pellegrino. Working with these brands has provided her the opportunities to meet talented chefs and culinary influencers from around the world. It has also motivated her start her own food blog, Heaven on a Plate, which gives readers quick and easy recipe ideas.
After learning about the Gastronomy Program at BU, Kate applied immediately. The idea of uniting her passion for food, culture, and career through a specialized program was an obvious choice. She is excited to use what she learns at BU to propel herself forward in the communications field.