Many Latino College Students Go Hungry


Share On Social!

For many college students in the United States, hunger is a surprisingly common problem. Researchers from the University of Connecticut, College and University Food Bank Alliance, and the National Student Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness surveyed nearly 3,800 students at eight community colleges and 26 four-year universities in 12 states and found startling results, HealthDay News reports.

Among the students surveyed, 25% of those in community college and 20% at four-year schools reported frequently being food insecure. Researchers define being food insecure as lacking reliable access to sufficient amounts of affordable, nutritious food. Very low levels of food security qualified the students being surveyed as going “hungry.”

When it comes to minority students, including Latinos, the results of the survey were especially eye-opening. When the study looked at responses by demographic groups, the results showed that food insecurity was more prevalent among the students of color who participated in the survey.

In order to reduce health disparities, it is critical to address inequities in programs, practices, and policies. Join our site, connect with others, and get involved.

Students who identified as “Hispanic or Latino” or “Black or African American” were more likely to be food insecure and much more likely to experience very low food security. Of the Latinos surveyed, 31% reported having low food security and 25% were classified as having very low food security. Latinos made up 18% of the students surveyed.

“Hunger is an actual reality for far too many college students,” the University of Connecticut Public Interest Research Group Matt Talley said in a news release from the group. “This problem threatens thousands of students who want to focus on academics but instead are left worrying about where they are going to get their next meal.”

Even for students who had part-time jobs or were enrolled in a campus meal plan or received some form of financial aid, food insecurity was still a problem for many. The study also found that 48% of the students surveyed reported being food insecure during the previous 30 days. More than half of all the first-generation students (56% overall) were food insecure compared to 45% who had at least one parent who had attended college.

“The typical food insecure student in this study is working part-time, receives financial aid, and is reaching out for assistance from aid programs, and is still struggling to get by,” Talley said. “When we have so many students who are doing everything right but still can’t afford food, it means we’re failing to provide these students with a viable path to success in their higher education.”

Read the report here.

Read stories similar to this one:

  • Food Pantry Thinks Outside the Box to Bring Healthy Food to Latinos in Need #SaludAmerica #SaludHeroes #HealthEquity
  • Program helps food insecure Latinos. #SaludAmerica #HealthEquity

By The Numbers By The Numbers



Expected rise in Latino cancer cases in coming years

Share your thoughts