Research estimates that 9% to over 50% of college students at American schools are food insecure.
(US Government Accountability Office [GAO] 2018)
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Risk factors include low income, being a first-generation college student, single parenting, disabilities, homelessness, receiving SNAP, and being a former foster youth (GAO 2018).
Students of color, or those who identify as LGBTQ+, experience greater rates of food insecurity than their peers (Goldrick-Rab, Baker-Smith, Coca, Looker, and Williams 2019).
Individuals in food-insecure households are more likely to report poor health outcomes and symptoms of depression (Feeding America 2019).
Students who are employed experience higher rates of food insecurity than other students. Those who struggle to meet basic needs (such as food and housing) work more hours than their peers (Goldrick-Rab et al. 2019).
Many students experiencing food insecurity (80%) do not receive SNAP assistance (Goldrick-Rab et al. 2019). Many students are not eligible, and many students who are eligible do not access public assistance programs.