ABOUT Universities Fighting World Hunger


In pursuit of a sustainable future, universities will lead a global higher education movement focused on eradicating world hunger.


Universities Fighting World Hunger will be the catalyst mobilizing institutions of higher education to collaborate in a grassroots student campaign and an all-disciplines academic agenda to end hunger locally and globally.


In 2004 Auburn University accepted an invitation to partner with the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) in the fight against hunger, one of the world’s most pressing global issues. The WFP/Auburn “war on hunger” led to the creation of Universities Fighting World Hunger (UFWH) in 2006, a coalition that has expanded to nearly 300 campuses since its inception.

With sustainability as a framework, the comprehensive UFWH best practices model outlines a short-term grassroots student advocacy and action campaign, as well as an academic agenda focused on long-term solutions that are suitable for adaptation or replication by participating universities. The model is designed to (1) produce graduates who are not only technically competent, but globally aware and socially engaged, and (2) challenge universities to assume a leadership role in creating innovative solutions to global sustainability issues like world hunger.

Although each college and university in the network plans its own agenda, all are committed to stimulate student awareness about hunger as a critical global issue and help them find ways to make meaningful contributions regardless of background, major, or career path. At the annual summits, hundreds of student leaders from around the world gather to share best practices and experiences. You can join the movement to create a zero hunger world by 2030 if you take action now!

Hunger Solutions Institute

The Hunger Solutions Institute (HSI) provides the infrastructure for UFWH. We connect people and ideas that work. Our goal is to share knowledge and best practices in the fight against hunger and malnutrition by bringing together all academic disciplines. Hunger can be solved, but only when the relevant knowledge from all academic disciplines is combined with the abilities and strengths of all sectors.

As a convener, collaborator, and multiplier, in conjunction with UFWH, the Hunger Solutions Institute has launched several exciting initiatives:


  • Susan Hubbard

    Susan HubbardExecutive Director

    Dr. Susan Hubbard is Professor and Dean of the College of Human Sciences and Executive Director for the Hunger Solutions Institute at Auburn University.  Prior to taking leadership as of the Hunger Solutions Institute, Hubbard was instrumental in building the End Child Hunger in Alabama task force, a multi-sector collaboration that works to end childhood hunger in the state and the Institute’s first outreach initiative.

    Hubbard is a recognized leader in research, teaching and outreach initiatives in the College of Human Sciences. An Auburn alumna, Hubbard earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the College of Education and her doctorate in vocational and adult education with an emphasis in higher education administration.

  • Alicia Powers

    Alicia PowersManaging Director

    Dr. Alicia Powers serves as the Managing Director for the Hunger Solutions Institute. Dr. Powers holds a PhD in Nutrition and Food Systems from The University of Southern Mississippi as well as a MS and BS in Nutrition and Food Sciences from Auburn University.

    Prior to joining HSI, Powers worked as Extension Specialist/Community Health Coordinator with the Alabama Extension Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program – Education (SNAP-Ed) at Auburn University. Prior to that role, In this role, Powers served as an associate professor of Health Sciences at Furman University, where she also co-founded Live Well Greenville.

  • Kate Thornton

    Kate ThorntonDirector of International Outreach

    Kate Thornton is Director of Global Education in the College of Human Sciences, Auburn University, and Director of International Outreach for the Hunger Solutions Institute. She helped develop one of the only academic minors in Hunger Studies in the United States and currently teaches the Hunger Studies capstone course. She recently was appointed as a Director of the Kirchner Food Fellowship program, which provides a unique one-year mentoring experience for a cohort of graduate students, preparing them to identify investment opportunities in agriculture and food systems to advance food security.

  • Roger Thurow

    Roger ThurowScholar in Residence

    Roger Thurow is currently a Scholar in Residence at Auburn University College of Human Sciences. He joined the Chicago Council on Global Affairs as Senior Fellow on Global Agriculture and Food Policy, in January 2010, after three decades at The Wall Street Journal. For twenty years, he was a foreign correspondent based in Europe and Africa. His coverage of global affairs spanned the Cold War, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the release of Nelson Mandela, the end of apartheid, the wars in the former Yugoslavia, and the humanitarian crises of the first decade of this century, as well as 10 Olympic Games.

  • June Henton

    June HentonDean and Faculty Emeritus

    June Henton was Dean of the College of Human Sciences (CHS) and Executive Director of the Hunger Solutions Institute (HSI) at Auburn University. In 2004, in partnership with the UN World Food Programme, she founded Universities Fighting World Hunger and inspired its expansion to hundreds of campuses and through annual UFWH Summits since 2006. She was designated as a White House Champion of Change for Food Security in 2012.


  • Harriet Giles

    Harriet GilesFaculty Emeritus

    Harriet Giles previously served as the Director of External Relations for Auburn’s College of Human Sciences and Managing Director of the Hunger Solutions Institute. She headed the HSI’s first outreach initiative End Child Hunger in Alabama (ECHA), guiding a multi-sector task force composed of leaders from government, the private sector, NGOs, and academia. She also served as the faculty advisor for Auburn’s chapter of Universities Fighting World Hunger and in 2013 was presented with Auburn’s highest recognition for humanitarian achievement, the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Award for mentoring the next generation of food security leaders.

The Power of Partnership

No one person, nation, organization, or university can solve the critical issues of hunger and malnutrition. But working together, we can. The Hunger Solutions Institute and Universities Fighting World Hunger are proud to be part of a growing, multi-sector global network dedicated to ending hunger and malnutrition.

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In addition to a UFWH chapter on your campus, these organizations can also help transform your passion for a hunger-free world into tangible action and powerful results.

Bread for the world

Bread for the world

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Challah for Hunger

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The Campus Kitchens Project

The Campus Kitchens Project

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Thought for food

Thought for food

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Kirchner Food Fellowship

Kirchner Food Fellowship

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