About

About Christine

Discover fab flavors, explore cool places, and savor learning with this funky professor.

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About Christine Rai:

Christine Rai is a college professor in the Washington, D.C. area with a passion for food studies and experiential learning. A food nerd, she loves learning more in her kitchen, garden, and travels. Above all, Christine enjoys sharing adventures with her family.

She collaborates with area businesses and organizations to design and provide dynamic tours and talks on food, culture, folklore, and more.

Christine is available for speaking, teaching, and leading travel experiences. Fill out the contact form to get in touch.

Hungry for more? Keep reading below.

Taste

One of Christine’s central passions is food: tasting, cooking, and growing. She enjoys cooking vegan and non-vegan dishes inspired by her travels and visits to international groceries. Christine has been working on and off for a few years on developing Sunny Sauce, her own hot sauce made from peppers and herbs grown in her garden.

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An early incarnation of Christine’s potager, planted with herbs, vegetables, flowers, and fruit.

Travel

Christine’s love for travel was sparked at an early age by family travels across the US in a motorhome and her older brother’s entrancing tales of travel to Hong Kong. She enjoys traveling domestically with her family while seeking authentic experiences. In 2016 Christine traveled to Rome, Italy for a study abroad leader training and to France for a short term study abroad experience with a group from her college. She also planned and led a food and culture themed college trip to Italy in January 2020 that paired with a cultural competency development course.

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At a cafe with study abroad students in the Marais neighborhood of Paris

Teach 

Teaching is a key part of Christine’s identity; she has been an educator for over 20 years and has taught preschool, middle school, high school, college, professional development, and modeling. She utilizes a student-centered, active learning model, guided by principles of Universal Design. Christine infuses experiential learning opportunities in all her classes, including service learning, field trips, and cooking demonstrations. She currently is an English faculty member and professional development coordinator at Frederick Community College.

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Christine’s food-themed English 101 class on a field trip to Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture in NY.

Christine Rai’s Credentials

An award-winning professor and food and travel writer, Christine also leads tours, tastings, and talks.

Community Engagement

Tours and Talks

  • The Flavors of Maryland (via Zoom)
  • Cheese Tastings (In-person and via Zoom)
  • Lavender and Humanity (In-person and via Zoom)
  • Bonfire Tales: Monsters and Mysteries of Maryland (In-person storytelling)
  • Haunted History walking tour (for Historic Medley District)
Guided cheese tastings are delicious, fun, & educational.

Day Trips

  • Experience The Underground Railroad in Central Maryland
  • Experience Edgar Allen Poe in Baltimore
  • Experience Glenstone Museum’s Amazing Art and Landscapes
  • Experience the Wonderful World of Topiary at Ladew Gardens

Cheese Workshops

  • All About Brie
  • Charcuterie and Cheese
  • Cheese 101
  • Dutch Cheese and Culture
  • Spanish Cheese and Culture
  • Italian Cheese and Culture
  • French Cheese and Culture
  • Cheese, Chocolate, and Wine
  • Bubbles and Cheese
  • Book Tasting: The Whole Fromage
  • Pairing Perfection: Cheese and Accoutrements
  • Rose and Cheese
  • DIY Cheese Board
  • All About Sheep Cheese
  • White Wine and Cheese

Podcast

Haunted Poolesville

Collaboration

Publications

NEW BOOK: Rainbows in the Rain and Stars in the Dark: Inspiration for Positive Living

Full cover, Rainbows in the Rain and Stars in the Dark
Full cover, Rainbows in the Rain and Stars in the Dark

Academic Audience

Presentations & Workshops

  • Pasta Making Demo
  • Italian Cheeses & Salumi Tasting
  • Food and Culture: French Cooking Demo & Tasting
  • Food & Culture: Levantine Cooking Demo & Tasting
  • Food & Culture: Soul Food Cooking Demo & Tasting (with guest speaker)
  • Crafting IRL & ONL Teaching and Learning Spaces for Eye Health
  • Food Justice: Empowering Our Students and Communities
  • Homeless & Hungry On Campus: Helping Struggling Students
  • Optimizing Assessment
  • Food Insecurity at Frederick Community College: Teaching with Dignity
  • Assessment in Action
  • Science of Learning: Brain-Based Instructional Methods
  • Faculty in the Field: Community Based Learning (series)
  • Riot Grrrl Feminism and The Punk Singer (documentary screening)
  • Teaching Naked (essentials and workshop series)
  • A Model for Expanding Study Abroad for Community College Students
  • Experiential Learning: Outside the Classroom and Beyond the Campus
  • Best Practices for Integrating Service Learning
  • Place as Text: For Honors Faculty
  • How Universal Design Can Benefit All Your Students
  • Teaching Across Borders: Helping Our International Students Succeed
  • Creating Classroom Communities
  • “Worst Class Ever”: Dealing with Student Dissent
  • Active Learning in the Adult Classroom
  • Introduction to Differentiation (hybrid series)
  • Differentiating Instruction to Maximize Student Success
  • Engaging Your Students with Active Learning
  • Student-Centered Teaching Tools: For Adjunct STEM Faculty
Pasta making demo at Frederick Community College with a fellow professor.

COURSES CREATED/REDESIGNED

  • ENGL 226: Film as Literature: Redesigned course to meet cultural competency  and low-cost/OER guidelines and to emphasize film as a vehicle for storytelling, a medium of artistic expression, and a transmitter of culture.
  • ID 200: Honors Food and Culture: Interdisciplinary Honors course integrating history, sociology, anthropology, film, and conflict cuisine
  • ACCE 250: Global Scholar Experience: Cultural competency development umbrella course for short term study abroad with a mentorship model for trip co-leader

INTERNATIONAL Academic Trips LED

  • Food and Culture of Italy, paired with hybrid Global Scholar Experience course, 2020
  • Food and Culture of France, paired with online Global Scholar Experience course, 2016
Frederick Community College Global Scholars in Pompeii.

Local & Regional Academic Tours/trips led

  • Conflict Cuisine and Food & Culture: Pittsburgh, PA
  • Place as Text and Table as Text: International Grocery Lotte, Germantown, MD
  • Downtown Literary Walking Tour, Frederick, MD
  • Place as Text: Downtown Frederick, MD
Leading a Place as Text tour in downtown Frederick, MD.

Awards & Honors

  • NISOD Excellence Award, 2021
  • Laughlin Distinguished Faculty Award, Frederick Community College, 2020
  • Special Award and Recognition award, Frederick Community College, 2020
  • Meatless Monday official blogger, 2018
  • Graduating class commencement presenter, Frederick Community College, 2017
  • Dr. Carol Eaton Innovation Award, Frederick Community College, 2016
  • Outstanding Part Time Faculty Award, Montgomery College, 2014
  • S.O.S. Creativity and Innovation Award, Montgomery College, 2012
Happy for the recognition of my innovation and work ethic.

Media

Memberships