Baylor Launches ‘The Store,’ Addresses Food Insecurity on Campus

February 23, 2018
Doctoral candidate Cara Cliburn Allen and Nathan Alleman, PhD, associate professor in educational leadership, have conducted research that revealed 32 percent of Baylor students have experienced very high levels of food insecurity. Participants said they often didn’t tell others about their food insecurity because of the shame associated with not having the means to meet basic needs at an institution in which it seemed their peers had ample financial resources.

“For many of us, it was very eye-opening,” said Michelle Cohenour, director of Student Success Initiatives. “The perception is that students in higher education in general have a lot of resources and are able to meet all of their needs. But their research discovered that there are definitely some students on Baylor’s campus that have gaps with even basic needs, food being one.”

The Store was established in an attempt to fill the gap, anonymously providing students food to keep them sharp and able to excel in the classroom. Located in the lower-level east wing of Sid Rich, in Room 047 of the Student Success Initiatives office, The Store is open to students from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.

A recent addition called “The Fridge” is a resource that will house mini fridges in different locations all over campus stocked with drinks, snacks and materials to make sandwiches.

The team consulted other universities with active food pantries on best practices. In fact, the idea for The Store’s name came from George Washington University.

The Store is fully donation-based, and will require the Baylor community to remain a functioning resource for students. An updated list of greatest needs can be found at Donations can be dropped off at the front desk of the Student Success Initiatives offices between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

For more information, contact Michelle Cohenour, x3478.