University of Gastronomic Sciences
|University of Gastronomic Sciences|
|Location||Bra, Piedmont, Italy|
University of Gastronomic Sciences is an international academic institution in Northern Italy. The campus is located in Bra, a city in the north-west region of Piedmont. It was founded in 2004 by Carlo Petrini, the founder of the Slow Food Movement, as the first university specifically devoted to study the inextricable links between food and cultures.
The University of Gastronomic Sciences (UNISG) is a unique institution. From its inception in 2004, UNISG has been an innovative school by international standards.
Organization and structure
The University of Gastronomic Sciences is directed by an executive board and a faculty council.
The university is housed in the Agenzia di Pollenzo and the Cascina Albertina, two renovated 19th-century farm structures. The Agenzia, which today has the appearance of a small castle, in fact comprises three separate entities: the University, the Banca del Vino (wine bank), and the Albergo dell'Agenzia, an upscale hotel and meeting facility. The University's administrative buildings and teaching spaces are spread between the two buildings, both of which have been retrofitted to modern standards. Students are housed approximately 10 kilometers from Pollenzo, in the town of Bra, Italy.
All students in the university are provided housing throughout the small town of Bra, Italy. Housing is located in converted apartment buildings throughout the town.
The University of Gastronomic Sciences offers a three-year undergraduate program (BSc in Gastronomic Sciences, 180 European academic credits), two one-year master's program (Italian Gastronomy and Tourism, Food Culture and Communications, 60 credits each), and a two-year master (MA in Promotion and Management of the Turistic and Gastronomic Heritage, 120 credits). With the exception of the two-year program, students study an integrated mix of humanities (history of food, food aesthetics), food bioscience and technology (including nutritional sciences, molecular principles of taste, agroecology, organic agriculture, and ethnobiology), food anthropology and sociology, communications, and economics. In addition to coursework, students are required to attend field-study excursions throughout Europe and the world. During this process of hands-on learning, students meet with local farmers, food producers, and professors, who explain in depth a particular product, tradition, or production area. The students also stay and visit the areas, observing local/traditional practices and tasting a wide range of regional food and drink. It is this experience that assists in the synthesis of the students' classroom learning, and is one of the unique differentiators of the UNISG curriculum.
While some course are taught in English, students are encouraged to have a strong working knowledge of both Italian and English.
UNISG students attend in October the biennial Terra Madre and Salone Del Gusto events in Turin, Italy. All students are encouraged to contribute and actively participate in numerous workshops and seminars on topics of interest. Ongoing participation in several food conferences and events, such as the bi-annual Slow Fish in Genova in spring, are also part of the students' extracurricular activities.