Food is Opportunity

Come one, come all, to our Food is Opportunity Day that we’ll be hosting in partnership with the Montgomery County Food Council on Tuesday, February 12th!

Food is Opportunity Day will be a multi-part event, including two educational panels — a “Food Careers Panel” and a “Scaling a Food Business Panel” — as well as an expo featuring product samples from Montgomery County food and beverage businesses, and information tables hosted by USG programs and local food system partner organizations. Learn about the diverse opportunities available within the food system, including unexpected career paths, current job openings with local food businesses, improved food access through on-campus initiatives, and more! Please use this link to sign-up for the event and to volunteer.

Event Schedule: Three sessions, described below, will be held in the Rockville/Potomac Ballroom in Building II at USG.

Session 1: Food Careers Panel (12-1pm, open to all students)

  • Students will have the opportunity to jump start their food system careers by learning about professional opportunities beyond the kitchen: from local food artisans, to social entrepreneurs, to nonprofit leaders. Q&A to follow.
  • This panel will feature Sophia Maroon, Founder of Dress it Up Dressing, Jackie DeCarlo, CEO of Manna Food Center, and Ryan Walter, Co-Founder of Compost Crew.

Session 2: Food and Beverage Expo (Students are encouraged to attend from 1-2pm)

  • At the Expo, local food and beverage producers will be hosting tables to connect their business with retail and wholesale buyers and provide samples of their products.
  • Additional organizations/businesses representing a wide variety of food resources and programs in the County will also be exhibiting, including Community Food Rescue, Crossroads Community Food Network, Manna Food Center, and the Montgomery County Office of Agriculture.

Student Networking with Businesses and Organizations (2-2:30PM)

  • During this time, students can network with and learn from local producers, entrepreneurs and nonprofit organization representatives and inquire about volunteer/internship/job opportunities.
  • Students will receive information prior to the event on which participating businesses have internship/job openings.

Session 3: Scaling a Food Business Panel (2:30-3:30pm, open to all students)

  • In growing your food business it’s necessary to understand the moving parts of your regional ecosystem — from business development resources available to sales and distribution channels to policy and regulations knowledge.
  • This panel will feature Judy Stephenson, the MoCo Small Business Navigator, Kelly Dudeck with Grown Fortify, and Bart Yablonsky, Owner of Dawson’s Market.
  • Students attending this panel will also have the opportunity to taste a dish created by CulinArt during the expo.

Please visit the Montgomery County Food Council’s website to learn more. We hope to see you there!

Food is Opportunity Day-1

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