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Kendra Lynn Kauppi; PhD, MS

Extension Educator/Research Associate

University of Minnesota Department of Food Science & Nutrition

St. Paul, MN 55108

 

Biography

Kendra Kauppi is an EPHLI fellow (2009-2010). She is a Research Associate and Food Safety Extension Educator at the University of Minnesota. Kendra earned a BS in microbiology and biochemistry and MS and PhD degrees in Food Science with a special interest in Food Safety Microbiology. Kendra brings several years of teaching experience including academics and out-reach to the food service and production sectors. She also has experience in food science research and has authored and coauthored several publications and presentations in the field. She holds certificates in Safe Quality Food (SQF), HACCP and is a Certified Food Manager (CFM) instructor/proctor. She is currently working on the Self-Audit collaborative project between the University of Minnesota and the City of Minneapolis in which she is responsible for conducting community meetings and training front line food service workers while interfacing with sanitarians. She is part of a team that has recently been awarded a grant to fund the “Development of an Integrated Multi-Level Food Safety Training Program for Spanish-Speaking Food Service Workers.” Her educational experience and enthusiasm ensures that food operators and frontline food workers will receive the necessary training to deliver safe food. Kendra enjoys working across disciplines with public health, regulatory agencies and the food service industry while implementing the research achievements of academics. In her spare time, she enjoys playing and watching hockey (go Gophers and Wild), performing with the Roseville String Ensemble, embracing four seasons of outdoor activity that Minnesota has to offer (including the snow), camping in the BWCAW, traveling and volunteering for local organizations.

 

Leadership Development Opportunities

As I conclude my EPHLI journey, I reflect back on the learning experience this past year (2009-2010). Through the program, I was able to learn and apply a new way of thinking and approaching problem solving as related to a project in my area of expertise - food safety. However, as the year progressed, I found myself using systems thinking in every day life. Coming from an academic background, very little leadership training is available for students pursuing a science/public health degree; people who will eventually be leading units, departments and organizations. Most of these skills are learned and modified on the job. In addition, I found myself involved in self-exploration. At times it was fascinating and at other times uncomfortable using tools such as the SKILLSCOPE 360, MBTI and the Change Style Indicator to help understand how and why I make the choices I do. More importantly, it helped me to understand others in that we are all different. In a leadership position, I will have to be the one to recognize and modify my behavior. One lesson I have found invaluable is the understanding conflict and learning how to apply (conflict) management and negotiation skills. Throughout the program, I have met many wonderful people – true professionals in public health who in working on assignments and projects together reinforced the idea that problems are not unique to a specific region. The leadership project results can be shared with others. I will continue to use and develop the leadership skills that I have gained through EPHLI both in my professional and personal life.