The United States Department of Agriculture reports annually on household and childhood food insecurity rates but does not track the number of college students who are food insecure. While there are no national data on how many students are food insecure, campuses and states have been publishing shocking research on this issue over the last few years. For example, a recent study of 86,000 students found 48% of students surveyed reported food insecurity.
The Government Accountability Office also released a 2018 report that estimated two million students were eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) but did not receive benefits. This issue has gained national prominence recently with multiple articles appearing in the New York Times, National Public Radio and other major news outlets. This session will educate RDNs about the current literature on food insecurity prevalence and its effects on academics, provide examples of programs on college campuses to improve food security, and explain SNAP rules for students and how to increase SNAP participation among this vulnerable demographic.
Planned with the Hunger and Environmental Dietetic Practice Group.
CPE Level: Level 2
- 12.2.2 Identifies and reviews relevant literature and evidence-based research to create program plans
and to justify needs and/or actions.
- 12.3.3 Takes into consideration any population and environmental disparities (health, availability, finances, access) when developing programs.
- 3.3.2 Increases public awareness of the importance
of nutrition and public welfare.
- Assess the current literature on college food insecurity and identify examples of programs and services that address food insecurity among this population.
- Describe the roles of RDNs and DTRs working in various areas of practice in supporting college food security.
- Explain how public policy at the state and national levels impacts food security in this population.
- Marsha Spence
- Alana Davidson