Growing up on a wheat farm, Jake Fischer was always interested in agriculture but didn’t want to be a farmer.
“I was always fascinated by not what wheat is, but what wheat is used for,” he said.
After serving in the air force for four years, Fischer began studying food science and was a member of the food science club at Washington State University.
Because he believed strongly in the future of agriculture, he was constantly recruiting for food science and became a CAHNRS ambassador his senior year.
But, before that, during his junior year at WSU, he was offered an internship to LambWeston, one of the nation’s most innovative and leading suppliers of frozen potato products.
After graduating college, he received a job at LambWeston and quickly moved up in the ranks thanks, in part, to the classes through the CAHNRS program.
“In school I really learned how everything fits together from the standpoint of launching new products, and (gained) an understanding (of) how you can get the same product at multiple locations across the country,” he said. “I also learned a lot of terminology and food safety standards that really helped me out in my career.”
For the past two years, Jake has worked as a senior food scientist developing new potato products. In addition, he also recruits interns, looking at many potential candidates from WSU.
He said LambWeston currently has an opening for a Research & Innovation Project Development Intern. Past interns in this position have worked on finding different ways to improve the quality of french fries or explored infusing energizing flavors in the products. Ideally they are looking for food science majors in these positions, though they have positions for a variety of majors. He also said a research background is preferred, but in general, they want someone is a motivated, self-starter who works well on the team, highlighting the importance of beyond-the-discipline skills and CAHNRS commitment to providing these skills.
Jake has come full-circle through his progression at LambWeston, from being an intern to now hiring interns, and he’s still passionate about his work.
“At the end of the day, we make French fries that people love,” he said, “and I am happy to be a part of that. ”
Katie Shadler, PR Specialist