In a 2018 campus climate survey, 26 percent of respondents reported that there had been a time when they did not have enough food for themselves or their household, and 23 percent said they knew of UMB student(s) who skipped meals due to finances.
Studies show the detrimental effects of food insecurity on students, including decreased academic performance, missed opportunities for professional development, symptoms of depression and anxiety, and other negative physical and mental health indicators. UMB students experiencing food insecurity found that it affected their ability to:
- Complete assignments
- Complete other tasks/obligations
- Attend class
- Maintain a school/life balance
Food insecurity, at its root, is a symptom of economic insecurity. As the number of low-income students seeking higher education grows nationwide, UMB is working to support the success of students experiencing food insecurity by instituting the UMB Student Pantry.
The pantry will offer a consistent, centralized place for students to obtain nonperishable food items, information, and resources to more immediately assist during times of need. Located on the third floor of the UMB Southern Management Corporation Campus Center, the UMB Student Pantry will offer dry goods, nonperishables, and personal hygiene items. The pantry aims to be open and operational later this fall, with single-day “pop-up” markets offered as well. Updates will continue to be provided in the Elm.
To support Student Affairs in this inaugural initiative designed to support the well-being of our students and to learn how your contribution can improve their lives, visit www.umaryland.edu/campus-food-security.