Danielle Willcutt

Year in Program: 1

Fields: American History, Food History, Social and Cultural History, Culinary Tourism, Culinary Entrepreneurship

Educational Background:
B.A. in History; B.A. in International Relations from Grand Valley State University (2010)
M.A. in Gastronomy from Boston University (2018)
Master’s Certificate in Economic Development via Tourism Management from Boston University (2017)

Advisor: Helen Veit

Email: willcut@msu.edu

Culinary history and foodways provide the focal point for my research. I am interested in the ways in which culture is expressed and exchanged throughout each step of food production and consumption. I received my Master’s at Boston University. My Thesis, “Exploring the Kentucky Bourbon Trail: Culinary Tourism in the Heartland,” I explored the relationships between heritage, entrepreneurship, and economic development within Kentucky’s bourbon country. Through exploring culinary tourism as a mean’s for economic development, I look for the ways in which heritage may be transmitted through entrepreneurship and small business development in a way that improves the economy from the ground up. My research on spirits tracks the lifecycles of products such as bourbon and rum; examining the products from production to consumption. My interest in foodways is globally-spanning, but my research at MSU is focused on collecting oral histories of foodways in the Great Lakes Region and Michigan in particular.

Graduate Assistantships:
IAH 201 American Diasporas Fall 2018