BOWLING GREEN, OH (WTOL) - Bowling Green State University is working to raise awareness about food insecurity across its campus. This comes after a pilot study shows students on campus do not have access to affordable and nutritious foods.
The university conducted a pilot study during the Spring of 2017. It looked at how much access students have to healthy and affordable meals.
Faculty members say food insecurity is a problem among college students all across the U.S. At BGSU, the problem is being tackled by raising awareness.
"About 4000 students received the survey and we had not even quite 400 replied," Director of Undergraduate Dietetics at BGSU Carrie Hamady said.
The study revealed 52.5 percent of students who live off campus worry about having enough money to buy food, 60.7 percent cannot afford to cook balanced meals, and 65 percent cut portion sizes.
These numbers did not come as a surprise to faculty.
"Our students are facing challenges with tuition costs, housing costs, gas, cars," Hamady explained.
One way the university is raising awareness about food insecurity is through its initiative BGSU Ending Hunger.
"So many students aren't even aware that local food pantries will give them food, that there are weekly free meals in our community," Hamady added.
The Falcon Cares Program at the university allows students to donate their meal swipes to students who need it.
"They can donate one swipe a week, and dining services keeps track of those," Hamady said. "We're also trying to partner with um some of our advisers and other staff that work one on one with students,"