Last spring, Wendy Jaquet—a professor in the Department of Public Policy—invited myself and our Government Relations Officer, Hayden Rogers, to her Public Administration course to learn more about the issue of food insecurity on-campus. I learned that day the definition of food insecurity, that is—the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of afforable, nutritious food. I learned 23% of our student population at Boise State experience very high levels of food insecurity, and 18% have experienced high levels, accounting for nearly 41% of our student population. I learned that our university is the only institution in the state that doesn’t have a project to serve this need. I was utterly shocked.
That’s why this year, when I thought about the impact or legacy I wanted to leave behind on behalf of the student voice, I wanted to start where students’ success begins: their stomachs. Without enough to eat in a day, it’s impossible to ask that students not only excel in the classroom but join outside clubs and organizations that can enhance their performance in class.
This year, ASBSU will partner with twelve on-campus departments and colleges to host food cupboards that are accessible to all students. These cupboards will be stocked with rotating meal kits that are not only informed by on-campus dietician, Marlee Harris, but also meet both nutritional needs of students, and meet the standards of taste buds we all share. Each week, students will have the opportunity to grab a meal kit that can be made on-campus in less than ten minutes. Additionally, each cupboard will include basic school supplies, and healthy grab-n-go snack options for your in-between class rush.
If you’re like me, and the holiday season puts you in the spirit of giving, you may be wondering how you can help?
Spread the word. While resources off-campus like the Idaho Food Bank and the Horse Bit are still viable options, we want students to know these efforts will be a permanent effort on campus at Boise State in the spring of 2018. Use #fullbroncos to share this project with your friends.
Donate. If you have anything to give, please consider donating online to the PonyUp Campaign or venmo your donation to @fullbroncos. https://ponyup.boisestate.edu/project/8372/wall.
Shop. Lastly, we’ve partnered with the Bronco Shop this month to launch a ‘round-up’ campaign that allows you to give back when you shop at Boise State in the month of November. Get your holiday shopping in and give back at the same time.
As of this week, our efforts have raised nearly $750 towards our $5,000 goal and we are excited to see all that our Boise State community is capable of contributing in coming weeks.