FSHN Doctoral Student Awarded Food Regulation Scholarship of Phi Tau Sigma


By Ethan Stoetzer

Abigail (Abbey) Boyd, Ph.D. candidate for Food Science and Technology at Iowa State, was recently awarded the Catherine Adams Hutt, Ph.D., RD and Peter Barton Hutt, LL.B., LL.M. Food Regulation Scholarship of Phi Tau Sigma (PTS).

The annual award is given to a student member of PTS, who has shown “exceptional scholastic achievement, a dedication to Phi Tau Sigma, and, very importantly, a strong documentable interest in food regulation as evidenced by course work, research, internships/work experience, and/or other food regulation accomplishments.”

Boyd’s path has been one of numerous academic accolades. Prior to arriving at Iowa State, Boyd graduated with a degree in Biological Sciences from Northwestern University (Evanstown, Illinois). Her academic accomplishments have been recognized through several college and department scholarships, in addition to being a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Needs Fellow.

As a Ph.D. candidate, Boyd is focused on research examining in vitro digestion models for analysis of bioactive compounds, which can have important future implications for identifying foods with potential health benefits, and is a cornerstone for her future aspirations. Boyd’s career goals are to work in science policy and advocacy, where she can work to effectively communicate science to legislators to address larger nutrition-based societal problems.

“It’s a great honor to receive this award and represent Iowa State on the national level at Phi Tau Sigma,” Boyd said. “I’m humbled to be recognized for something I’m truly passionate about, and am looking forward to using it to continue to work toward my goals in the area of food policy and regulation.”

In addition to her academic accolades, Boyd has taken on several leadership roles throughout her time as a student, including: President of the Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Club, Senator for the Graduate and Professional Student Senate (GPSS), member of the GPSS Wellness Committee and Wellness Officer for the GPSS. She has also served as a mentor for the Cyclone Scholars Summer Research Experience (CSSRE) and the McNair Scholar Program. Beyond the classroom and leadership experience, Boyd has also published an original manuscript, ‘From Cafeteria to Community: Amending the National School Lunch Act to Promote Healthy Eating in Children’, reflecting her interest in food policy and wellness. Additionally, she serves as an associate editor for the Journal of Science Policy and Governance.

When not focusing on her academics, research, organizational and editorial responsibilities, Boyd loves to spend her time cooking and baking, as well as other indoor activities with her cat, Bentley. One might also find her practicing yoga or along the many trails within Ames’ public park system.

Phi Tau Sigma is the Honor Society of Food Science and Technology. The mission of Phi Tau Sigma is to raise the stature and recognize scholarly achievements of the Food Science and Technology profession.  The Iowa State chapter promotes professional enrichment through discussion of hot topics in Food Science at bi-monthly meetings.