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Name Susannah Hainley

Hometown Seattle, WA

Current Food Obsession  Books on food, as always - THE BOTANY OF DESIRE by Michael Pollan, THE DRUNKEN BOTANIST:  THE PLANTS THAT CREATE THE WORLD'S GREAT DRINKS by Amy Stewart.

Susannah Hainley

Susannah Hainley
"There's this...component that's intangible to things that are transcendent and beautiful in the world. I think food that touches and moves you is one of those things, like falling in love or interacting with art, that's just different. It's impossible to put into words." – Colin Atrophy Hagendorf, Slice Harvester: A Memoir in Pizza

Why did you decide to pursue a Master of Arts degree in Food Studies?
I had been considering a career shift for a few years, and knew that I had this interest in food that I had absolutely no idea what to do with - I knew I didn't want to be a chef or a nutritionist, but I wasn't sure what my other options were. I love learning, and the more I started looking around at programs, the more I saw that this was an emerging academic field, and I could start to figure out for myself what food meant to me, and how to follow my passions within the realm of food studies (which is so broad).

What topic have you found most compelling in your studies?
I'm just starting out in the intro class - so I have not accumulated enough experience to begin to answer this question, but I love that I am beginning to have my eyes opened to many more angles and perspectives on subjects that I had seen previously in a much less dimensional way.

What is one of your favorite San Francisco food experiences?
A magical surprise dinner at Pétit Crenn (before I had even moved here); sitting in Dolores Park eating Tartine croissants and watching the eclipse; attending a startup accelerator event for food startups paired with Big Ag companies.

What is your thesis project?
Too early to tell.

How do you envision putting this degree to work?
I'd love to leverage my creative strategy and design background to effect change in some way - but my path there is still a bit hazy, which I'm fine with. My whole purpose for being here in the Food Studies program is to explore topics, interests, and get access to professors and a cohort who are interested in similar themes.