Drive economic growth as an entrepreneur in the food and beverage industry.

Students eligible: Current University of Illinois students
Semesters of course offerings: Spring, Fall
Program length: 9 total credit hours
Format: Online, asynchronous

This program will help you develop an adaptable, innovative, and resilient entrepreneurial mindset.

Courses will give you an overview of a variety of food-related topics, including:

  • the science and nutrition of food
  • food processing quality, and regulations
  • consumer-driven market analysis
  • product/service development
  • hospitality management
  • business and financial planning

You'll also have the opportunity to learn about human-centered design and empathetic problem-solving. This program is open to all majors and is ideal for students interested in consumer-driven entrepreneurialism.

Students selling treats to other students.
Vegetables spread on the table.

Program Highlights


  • Define a business vision, mission, and goals and develop a value proposition to attract customers and achieve success.
  • Practice the approaches for gathering consumer/community insights and social/cultural awareness to understand your target market.
  • Understand personal financial planning, multidisciplinary teamwork, and resilience to become a well-rounded entrepreneur. 
  • Learn about the Siebel Center for Design and its Human Centered Design approach to problem-solving.
  • Discover the fundamentals of food science and how it relates to you. 


Total hours required to complete the certificate: 9

Required courses (6 credit hours): 

  • FSHN 193: Edible Entrepreneurialism - Feeding Ideas for the Future (3 credit hours) 

Pick either or both:

  • FSHN 101: The Science of Food and How it Relates to You (3 credit hours)
  • FSHN 120: Contemporary Nutrition (3 credit hours), OR FSHN 220: Principles of Nutrition (4 credit hours)

Complete your certificate with (if necessary):

  • ACE 199: Women, Money, and Power (2 credit hours)
  • ACE 240: Personal Financial Planning (3 credit hours)
  • DTX 210: Introduction to Social Design (3 credit hours)
  • ETMA 311: Humanity in the Food Web (3 credit hours)
  • ETMA 430: Project Management (2 credit hours)
  • LEAD 140: Harnessing Your Interpersonal Intelligence (2 credit hours)
  • LEAD 260: Foundations of Leadership (3 credit hours)
  • LEAD 380: Leadership in Groups and Teams (3 credit hours); Pre-req: LEAD 260 + Comp I 
  • SOCW 321: Social Entre & Social Change (3 credit hours)

Start Certificate

Express your interest in pursuing a certificate. Once accepted, you will receive an email with further instructions for registration.

Start certificate

Complete Certificate

Upon completing your required coursework, you will need to submit a completion request for your certificate. 

Confirm completion

Program Contact

Dawn Bohn
Teaching Associate Professor; Director, Online Masters of Science in Food Science Program

349 Bevier Hall
(217) 333-0881

Dawn Bohn headshot