5 things I commonly heard as a Biotechnology and Food Science student

January 19, 2021


They are always people curious about your education life. They could be sceptical, awkward and full of assumptions. I round up some of the words people (different field) said to me when I studied Biotech and later took Food Science.

1. "..make everything in a test tube"
This one is the OG of all. Stereotyping science students. Test tube, the glass object over-highly associated with Scientist. Don't forget the lab coat and frizzly hair. With goggle. 

First, we don't use the test tube all the time. Second, the lab coat is a MUST only in the lab. Third, the goggle is mostly worn upon handling dangerous chemicals. Fourth, I only wore goggle once......

I think the items I overly used in the lab were petri dish..and pipette tips. I spent about RM 2 000 on petri dish with my lab partner on our last research.

2. "Do you get free food (after an experiment)?"
We do take the food home....that because we actually bought our own food sample. So, it is not free at all. That was my time doing Biotechnology degree. We only do food analysis, not food development. 

It may be different for a Food Science degree student. Because they actually develop and analyse food through sensory analysis (free food indeed).

3. "Did you feel hungry on every lecture?"
🀣🀣. Yes. Sometimes. Even the lecturers felt the same. Especially when they had to play "educational videos" in a lecture like, how to make mayonnaise.

4. "..What is Biotechnology?"
My cousins asked me, what did I study. I said, "..Biotechnology". They all gave a friendly laugh.  Then, a question popped up, "What is Biotechnology?". Confidently, I defined Biotechnology like a textbook would if it has a mouth. 

The sudden changes of looks on my cousins' faces -puzzled and lost. At that time, I couldn't really explain biotechnology in the simplest way. Then, they all dispersed to nowhere one by one like nothing happened. Awkward..

Another one was with my ex-nanny. She asked, "What are you studying? Medic? Finance? Account?". Again, I said, "..Biotechnology". Her smiles dropped..silent.

5. Asking anything about food
Just because I have "Food" in my Degree's name, doesn't mean I studied every inch about food. 

There is various field in food study; Food Processing, Food Technology, Food Microbiology,  Food chemistry, Food Nutrition, Food Toxicology, Food Safety and Quality, Post-harvesting, Food Biotechnology, Halal Food.....

When I did my Food graduate study, I branched out from my Biotechnology background, specifically a mix of food microbiology. Again, I DON'T have a bachelor in Food Science. So, my knowledge is limited but "particularised".

There is someone who questions me about food knowledge outside my area. I may usually reply - "I don't know. I will search later on Google"

"Oh. I thought you studied Food....", the unamused look on their faces.

Do you think the same? 

What some of the stereotypes of your educational background that people need to change?


  1. Replies
    1. haha. silakan
      Nak betulkan stereotype orang. Macam2..
      Waktu Ema student UIA - Stereotype common

      "student UIA kahwin awal" welp. Ema dah masuk 27, still single ヽ(✿゚▽゚)γƒŽ
      "UIA? jadi doktor ker?" Sob2. kesian budak2 kimia, matematik etc....

  2. This is such an interesting post. I hope more people would feel inspired to write something similar, especially in my field (English studies/English communication). We get so many kinds of stereotypes like: we'll end up as English school teachers, we only read and write essays (like what??), there's no specific jobs in the market for us,etc. 🀣

    1. No job market........πŸ˜₯
      But, don't mind the others!

      I read a tweet last week of someone with a Degree in Art Design.
      Someone said to OP -
      "Nanti nak kerja kat kedai printing ker??"


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