31
January
2022
|
01:00
Asia/Singapore

Nourishing their Passion for Food Technology

Meet Angela and Angeline Goh from SIT-Massey University Food Technology programme.

Meet Angela and Angeline Goh from SIT-Massey University Food Technology programme.

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While most kids were drawn to cartoons, action or sci-fi entertainment, Angela and Angeline preferred to watch shows that engaged their tummies: How food ends up on their table.

After school, the Goh sisters often indulged in food-related YouTube videos and local TV shows. From learning about how avocados are grown to how soft drinks get their fizz, the duo explored endless topics about food. What’s more, these identical twins also enjoyed cooking and eating. They loved going on family food trips up north to Johor Bahru and Malacca for chicken rice balls and other sumptuous delicacies.

For them, food is life. And not surprisingly, after completing their diplomas in Food Science and Nutrition, they were drawn to the Food Technology degree programme, jointly offered by the Singapore Institute of Technology (SIT) and Massey University.

Combining classroom training with laboratory sessions and workshops, the degree programme offered the twins the right combination of theory and practical knowledge in the world of food science and technology. They were on the right track to turn their passion for food into practical, hands-on careers.

Understanding the Science of Food

At SIT, the sisters were given a practical introduction to the food technology industry through its unique Integrated Work Study Programme (IWSP). This distinctive feature of SIT’s applied learning pedagogy is an extended work attachment that can last up to 12 months.

In their final year, they were tasked to reverse engineer a product – laksa fried rice. Putting their cooking skills to work, they came up with 48 different formulations of the laksa paste to achieve a similar taste as the market product.

Through IWSP, they were offered a taste of what their careers after university would be like. For example, they had to come up with solutions to problems faced by dairy and beverage companies. Their seven-month long work attachment culminated in a presentation of their findings. It was the first time the sisters saw the food manufacturing processes they had watched on TV come alive. The IWSP experience was not only an eye opener, but also affirmed their interest in food technology.

“Our work attachments allowed us to see the manufacturing process first-hand from beginning to end. We played a role in each process and came to understand more about the different aspects of food production, and why certain things happen the way they do,” recalled Angeline, who had to carbonate beverages for her IWSP. She is now a food technologist at Prima Limited. Meanwhile, Angela is a research engineer at FoodPlant Pte Ltd, a subsidiary of SIT offering small-batch food production.

Twin Tag Team

The Goh sisters are glad to have supported each other throughout their learning journey. “We were given many hands-on practical sessions in university, allowing us to apply what we learnt in class. “I don’t have to video-call a classmate in the middle of the night to discuss work. Since we stay in the same room, I can say anytime, ‘let’s have a discussion now’,” Angela said jokingly.

The sisters even played Tchoukball together, representing SIT in the fast-growing indoor ball sport. Angela plays on the left and Angeline on the right – effectively confusing opponents who had to deal with double the trouble on court, and helped their team collect a host of accolades from competitions both at home and abroad.

These fond memories have anchored the twins’ loyalty to the SIT family. Even though both have full-time jobs now – secured before graduation, no less – they remain proud SITizens.

As Angeline shared: “Part of the SITizen-DNA is to be able to learn, unlearn and relearn. Here at SIT, we learnt how to unlearn the temptation of sticking to the status quo. We always strive to keep learning while adjusting our mindsets to improve our resilience.”