college students
food insecurity
food pantry
September 25, 2013

College Food Pantry


Scott: Expenses for college can leave many students’ pockets close to empty, which means for some students their bellies stay empty too. Well, check out what one college is doing to help with those hunger pangs. Keith Kocinski has the story.

Keith: College students have a lot on their plates: class, exams, clubs. But there is one essential thing missing for some: food.

Jake Cohen: I have to have a small dinner because I can’t afford to have a larger dinner. So, I’m eating less.

Keith: Now, an effort to curb this problem takes off at Stony Brook University on New York’s Long Island in the shape of a free food pantry for hungry students. It opened this month stocked with $5,000 in donated food for students who say they skip meals. The reason: they are unable to balance the cost of an education with food. The cost of a meal plan on campus is almost $2,000 per semester, a stretch for one-third of Stony Brook students from low-income homes.

Casey McGloin: There are 17 million children in America who are food insecure. So, when they turn eighteen, they don’t just all of a sudden not become food insecure. And if they’re going to college, they need to find some way to fill that need.

Keith: Not having enough to eat is one problem, and another problem that is usually coupled with that is not having enough healthy to eat.

Researchers at Oregon State University surveyed nearly 600 college students about their eating habits, and most weren’t even eating one serving of fruits and vegetables a day.

Stony Brook’s pantry is filled with nutritious meals students can make in their dorms. It will be run by student volunteers.

Ruby Escalera-Nater: There’s days where they don’t have food, or their friend is helping them buy food for them on a certain day. I’ve been there. My friends have been there.

Keith: The hope is there will be no stigma attached to taking free food. Students need only show a university ID.

Keith Kocinski, Channel One News.

Scott: To learn how to get involved with groups that help the hungry, check out the Impact page over at


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