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 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 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.

Media

Read more about what Christine’s been up to:

“The Ghosts of the Monocacy”

“Crisafulli’s Hosts ‘Book Tasting’ to Explore French Cheeses”

“A Living History: Lavender Then and Now Tells a Tantalizing Tale”

Recap: 6th Annual Omid Foundation Gala in Washington, DC 

“FCC Group Donates Nearly 900 Items to Rescue Mission”

“FCC Class Pairs Literature and Film with Experiential Learning”

Awards & Honors

Thanks so much for the support and recognition <blushes>:

*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

Collaboration

Businesses and organizations I have had the pleasure of working with:

*Crisafulli’s Cheese Shop

*Soleado Lavender Farm

*C&O Canal Trust

*Heritage Montgomery

*Historic Medley District

*Big Cork Vineyard

*Alliance Francaise de Frederick

*Institute for Learning in Retirement at Frederick Community College

*Montgomery County Recreation’s Senior Outdoor Adventures in Recreation

*Poolesville Seniors

*Upcounty Prevention Network

*Frederick County Public Libraries

Publications

Check out my published work:

“The Ghosts of Poolesville” Plenty Magazine, 2019

“Outside the Classroom and Beyond the Campus: Community-Based Experiential Education” NISOD Innovation Abstracts, 2016

Academic Audience

Presentations & Workshops

  • 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
  • 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

COURSES CREATED

  • 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

Community Engagement

Tours and Talks

Lavender and Humanity (In-person and via Zoom)

Bonfire Tales: Monsters and Mysteries of Maryland

Haunted History (Walking tour for Historic Medley District)

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

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

Memberships 

Civil Eats

Historic Medley District

Montgomery Countryside Alliance

Slow Food