3 March 2020 | Category: Student life

Student Story – Mary Jo

By Ester

I grew up on the Catalan Pyrenees, where my heart belongs. I...

Mary Jo also showed her favourite places on campus in a student tour at ood.wur.nl. But I also talked to her about her experiences with studying and living in Wageningen.

Hi Mary Jo! For people that don’t know you yet, could you give a brief introduction of yourself?

“My name is Mary Jo and I am from Chicago, IL, USA! I am 23 years old and am currently studying towards my master’s degree in Food Technology.

Where do you live? In a student house like Starflat or do you rent a room in the city?

“I live in a studio apartment in the city centre. I love being a 2-minute walk from the market on Wednesdays and Saturdays!”

When did you first hear about the university? And what was your motivation to study here?

“During my last year of university in the U.S., I googled ‘top food science university in the world’. To my surprise it was Wageningen University, located in a small town in The Netherlands. I registered as a student right after being accepted without ever even visiting campus!

I wanted to go abroad for my master’s degree and do something totally different. I knew WUR would challenge me both academically and personally, which is exactly what I wanted out of graduate school!”

Also, why did you choose your programme? What was the moment you knew for sure?

“I pursued a bachelor’s degree in Food Science, so I knew I wanted to continue in the same field. I was very interested in research and development, so I chose the Product Design specialisation within Food Technology. It has always been my dream to develop exciting, new products for companies.”

Maybe you already know where you see yourself working in the future?

“I am heading back to the U.S. for my internship with Cargill, and will most likely be staying in the U.S. for my future career. I would love to work for a large company that is constantly innovating. Hopefully in my hometown of Chicago, IL.”

Which part of your study do you find the most interesting?

“I loved our Product and Process Design course. It allowed us to work with a multi-cultural group for Danone, which was such an interesting experience. We combined our knowledge from previous courses to solve real-world problems.”

And what about the student life? What do you do besides studying?

“Student life is definitely different compared to what I was used to, but I quickly adapted! I really enjoy getting together with friends to make dinner. We are able to show off what we make in our home countries and try all sorts of new things.

I like going on runs and cooking. I have been experimenting with many different cuisines and trying all sorts of new recipes. Also, there are a lot of nice places in Wageningen. I love the arboretum and ‘the beach’ on the Rhine river. They’re perfect spots for a run or walk after class or on the weekends.”

As an international student abroad, how do you meet other students?

“I made a core group of friends through the Annual Introduction Days (AID) last August. I also have made a good number of friends through my courses and group work! I have found it very easy to make friends at Wageningen because most other students arrive here eager to make new friends as well.”

How do you experience the international atmosphere on campus?

“I love how diverse our campus is. I have had group projects where I’ve gotten to work and know students from all over the globe. Definitely not something I would experience every day at home! I enjoy learning new things about different cultures and being able to ask questions to better understand them.”

What do you think about the campus? Do you have some favourite spots?

“Campus is definitely a lot smaller compared to what I am used to at home. The U.S. is famous for its gigantic campuses. However, there is still a lot to do in Wageningen!

I really love the Lumen building. There’s so much natural light and greenery inside you almost feel like you’re outside!”

In what way does living in the Netherlands differ from your home country?

“The Netherlands is 7 hours ahead of my home country, so the time change was definitely something I had to get used to. Also, we ride bikes absolutely everywhere here! I definitely had to get used to biking to get my groceries rather than hopping in the car.”

What do you like the most about studying and living in the Netherlands?

“I have really enjoyed getting out of my comfort zone and making friends from all over the world. I also love how public transport connects the country so well. We have been able to travel all over The Netherlands because the train system is so efficient!”

Every 2 weeks I talk to a fellow student about studying at Wageningen University & Research. I would like to know how they experience studying here, especially since we are all far away from home.

Do you have a question about studying in Wageningen? Leave your thoughts in the comments below. Or sign up for the updates to receive the next student experience.

By Ester

I grew up on the Catalan Pyrenees, where my heart belongs. I am currently enrolled on the MSc Food Technology program at Wageningen.
I could describe myself as a sunrise person underneath the restless and ever moving mind. I love running in the mountains, surrounded by nature and its beauty. I am passionate about learning, cooking, traveling and collecting plants to make handmade jewelry.

I live everyday as a new exploring adventure, step by step.

There are 22 comments.

  1. By: Ferran · 09-03-2020 at 10:59

    Hi! my name is Ferran, from Barcelona, and I’m thinking about applying for the MSc in Food Technology! I have some questions and doubts that i’d like to answer! Hope to hear from you soon Ester.

    1. By: Ester · 10-03-2020 at 15:11

      Hi Ferran, thank you for your message. I will email and inform you about it. Please, kindly let me know if you have further questions.
      Best regards, Ester

  2. By: Saeed · 10-03-2020 at 15:07

    Hello Mary
    How are you ?
    Hope your fine .
    I would like to participate in online master of food technology , I need your help and support I’m little worry please can you inform me all about the study and more informations and detail .
    Thank you
    Best regards

    1. By: Ester · 10-03-2020 at 15:14

      Dear Saeed,
      thank you so much for your message. Tomorrow is the Open Online Day I recommend you to follow the events to have a brief idea about your programme. https://ood.wur.nl If you have further questions, do not hesitate to contact me.

      Best regards,

      1. By: Saeed · 11-03-2020 at 17:10

        Dear Ester
        Thank you
        I would like to get full informations about online master of food technology ,
        Please advice me I appreciate this .
        Thank you
        Best regards

        1. By: Ester · 23-03-2020 at 11:42

          Dear Saed,

          Thank you so much for reaching us and show your interest for one of your online masters. Hereby, I will send you a private email with all the information regarding Food Technology Online Master.

          Kind regards,

  3. By: Godfrey Andawa · 11-03-2020 at 08:16

    Hello Mary? I applied for masters program in aquaculture and marine resources management at wageningen university and iam happy I was selected and I currently have the admission letter. Further more, I was invited to apply for OKP scholarship which am in Process of application. What are the chances of being selected for scholarship? Thank you.

  4. By: Shweta girme · 11-03-2020 at 08:55

    Hey! This is shweta I am planning for msc in food technology, but I need to know the admission procedure and scholarship availability.

  5. By: Gabriel · 11-03-2020 at 13:42

    I’m an MSc admission holder in Food Technology but waiting to apply for OKP scholarship. What are the chances for international students like me?

    1. By: dennis · 27-05-2020 at 12:21

      Hello am Dennis and glad to b here am how do I get access to full information about being admitted for msc organic agriculture

      1. By: Ester · 27-05-2020 at 14:02

        Hi Gabriel,

        thank you so much for your comment. We are happy to help you with this. I will contact you through mail to solve you doubts about MSc Organic agriculture.

        Kind regards,

      2. By: Ester · 27-05-2020 at 14:03

        Hi Dennis,

        I am happy to help you both about the master at WUR. I therefore wrote you an email to get in touch with you.

        Kind regards,

  6. By: Ramon · 11-03-2020 at 17:31

    Hello there, I just got accepted into the Food technology masters programm and was wondering about taking the product design and development route, could you tell me how effective is this specialization and if there are opportunitites for internships?

    1. By: Ester · 23-03-2020 at 11:58

      Dear Ramon,

      The second year consists of an individual thesis project (minimum 36 ECTS) and an intership/traineeship (minimum 24 ECTS). The internship has to be done in order to obtain the master degree. Therefore, all the students will have the opportunity to work for a company as an intern. Moreover, there is also the possibility to complete a minor thesis, which would equal an internship period.

      Product Design information

      If you have further questions, do not hesitate to contact me.

      Best regards,

  7. By: Dhruv · 28-05-2020 at 17:20

    I have avg ogpa i 6.3 bsc*agriculture .i want to do msc in entomology in wur . but my score in entomology and pathology are 9.0 and 8.5 respectively .can i get admission? I am very much interested in entomology

    1. By: Ester · 29-05-2020 at 09:26

      Dear Dhruv,

      thank you for your comment. I recommend you to check the study handbook 2019/2020. Perhaps you could email an study advisor to check whether you would be admitted with your actual score. Moreover, as a reminder, the deadline to apply is the 1st July, this link will lead you to how to apply https://ssc.wur.nl/Handbook/Programme/MPS/Description .

      I hope this helps, but please let me know if you need anything else or if you have any other questions.

      Kind regards,


  8. By: Deby · 27-12-2020 at 13:01

    Very interesting.

  9. By: Deby · 27-12-2020 at 13:02

    Oké Thank you.

  10. By: Purva Patil · 31-07-2021 at 16:05

    Hello ester,
    I want to do masters in food technology,and European masters in food studies course at wageningen has interested me.Could you please help me know more about it?

    Thank you

    1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 03-08-2021 at 10:56

      Dear Purva,

      Thank you for your question and interest in Wageningen University. I will send you an email with useful information.

      Best regards,
      Luisa Gomez
      Team International Students Advice |

  11. By: Jenica · 20-08-2021 at 07:12

    Hi Ester!

    So glad I was able to stumble upon your article! I’m planning to also take up MSc in Food Technology in Wageningen but I’m torn between taking Dairy Tech or Product Design as a specialization. I would love to take product design because I really am into R&D and making exciting and new products but I am also very interested to learn about Dairy Technology. Is there by any chance that you take a Dairy Tech course under Product design?

    Can you also share your specialisation and some of your experiences in the MSc FT masters program? Would love to hear from you! 😀 thanks! <3

    1. By: Luisa Fernanda · 23-08-2021 at 10:18

      Dear Jenica,

      Thank you for your interest in Wageningen University. Since Ester has already graduated, I suggest you contact another one of our current students. You can use the option “Chat with our students” with Unibuddy. You can click here to get in contact with an MSc student from the Food Technology programme.

      Best regards,
      Luisa Gomez
      Team International Students Advice |

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