Faculty and staff at Oklahoma City Community College were asked how they could improve student success. And much to the college's surprise, the answer was eliminating student hunger.
Professors voiced their concerns about students coming to class hungry in 2017.
“We found that studies tell us one in four community college student arrives on campus hungry. And we just thought, that's unacceptable,” Von Allen, Executive Director of Oklahoma City Community College Foundation, said.
So, the college quickly got to work on their new project.
Come next month, shelves will be filled with food and other items meant for anyone who attends OCCC. Each student is allowed to come to the pantry once a week, free of charge.
“Most of the things that we will stock in here, we will purchase from the Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma... One dollar will buy four meals purchasing through them,” Allen said.
They have used their resources to help raise the money to buy the food. And faculty has been a big part of the funding.
“This is a really great cause and know that thousands of students, families, children, will all benefit from this,” Dr. Markus Smith, Professor of Political Science at OCCC, said.
When Dr. Smith heard the college was working on a food pantry, he raised enough money for 16,000 meals through his real estate company. He is now encouraging other businesses to give.
If you would like to donate to the food pantry, click here.