Food Insecurity on Campus

Written by: the Xavierite Editorial Board

February 7th, 2018

Graphic illustrating food insecurity in America. — Photo provided by FaceTheFactsUSA.org 2013

We are all pretty familiar with the joke that college students are broke, only show up to events if there is  food offered, and survive off of ramen. To the fortunate, they’re just that, jokes. To others, a very real reality.

With the increase in college tuition and the declining income of many American families, the issue of keeping food on the table is coupled with the pressure to attend college in hopes to secure a middle class or higher lifestyle.

Food insecurity on campus typically isn’t something that is thought about by those who don’t experience it.

After all, it’s assumed that the meal plan should be sufficient. While the meal plan may suffice for students who can afford it, it doesn’t account for commuters, those who can’t afford it, or the families of the students.

There is no one stereotype or face to food insecurity. It is simply defined as the lack of a reliable access to a sufficient quantity of nutritious food. It could happen sporadically, without notice, and to anyone.

In a study conducted by James Dubick, Brandon Mathews, and Clare Cady called “Hunger on Campus,” it was found that 25% of students at two year institutions qualify as food insecure, compared to 20% of students at four year institutions.

There are higher rates of food insecurity among students of color (57% for African Americans, compared to 40% of non-hispanic whites), and first generation college students (56% compared to 45% who had one or more parents who attended college).

The Xavierite believes that students and their families shouldn’t have to choose between a meal and an education. That sentiment is shared by Saint Xavier University.

St. Xavier is taking the initiative to address the issue of food insecurity by creating a campus food pantry, which is sponsored by the Division of Student Affairs.

While still early in its inception, the food pantry will serve to aid the food insecure or hungry by providing the means to purchase food and other necessities, along with a space where individuals could pick up supplemental foodstuff.

Currently, students, faculty, and staff have access to the SXU Food Pantry, which is stocked with various free snacks and non perishables.

The SXU Food Pantry is located in the Student Organization Center, and those who use the SXU Food Pantry do not need to sign in or out. The SXU Food Pantry is open Monday through Friday, from 9AM to 4:30PM.

Letter to the Editor Policy

Here at The Xavierite, we try to represent the thoughts and opinions of the student body and Saint Xavier community within our Viewpoints section. If you feel that there is a story that should have been covered and was not or if you have criticism or concerns about our coverage, the best way to voice your opinion directly is through a Letter to the Editor.

Please send an email with “Letter to the Editor” in the subject line to thexavieritenewspaper@gmail.com

If you are a student be sure to include your name and major in the email. If you are a member of the staff or faculty be sure to provide your name and title/position.

We are always searching for feedback. All thoughts and opinions are greatly appreciated.

Letters may be edited for content if they contain profanity, libel or do not otherwise correspond with ethical practices in journalism.

Letters may also be printed at the editor’s discretion.

Written by: The Xavierite Editorial Board

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