Thursday, March 17, 2016

Colleges beginning to address the issue of student hunger - Bill Schackner, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

To many, the notion of starving college students conjures a romanticized image of young people away from home for the first time, temporarily making do with ramen noodles on their way to a degree and the good life. But for many who come to campus from low-income households making well below $30,000 a year, it’s a bleaker reality of having to choose between paying bills and eating enough. “What we are talking about is poverty,’’ said Clare Cady, co-director and co-founder of the College and University Food Bank Alliance, a national group of pantries on two- and four-year campuses. “A lot of students are not just supporting themselves. They’re supporting children or elderly parents.” Sometimes, it’s older adults who lost jobs and are back in school seeking new skills so they can re-enter the workforce. Other times, it’s traditional age undergraduates whose families already were struggling to keep pace with tuition, fees and varied others college costs from books to gasoline and then took a catastrophic hit like the one suffered by Mr. Armento, whose father drove a bread truck before becoming terminally ill.

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