Contributions from Baylor Regents Fund The Store’s Operations for 2019-2020
WACO, Texas (May 23, 2019) – More than $27,000 in personal contributions from the Baylor University Board of Regents will help fund operations during the 2019-2020 academic year for The Store, a free student food pantry operated by the Paul L. Foster Success Center-Student Success Initiatives.
The Store, which opened in December 2017, provides students in need with access to supplemental, nutritious food and normalizes food resources so students can fully thrive in their personal and academic achievements at Baylor. The Store is located in Sid Richardson Room 047 (east wing, lower level) and open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.
“We are extremely grateful for the generous donations from the members of the Board of Regents,” said Michelle Cohenour, director of Student Success Initiatives at Baylor. “Their donations came at a critical time for our food pantry since we had a record 2,677 visits to The Store during the spring semester. We continue to be blessed to receive canned goods and food donations from faculty, staff, students and community members, in addition to volunteers who help us to keep the shelves stocked for students. It truly takes the Baylor Family coming together to meet this important student need.”
In February, the Regent’s Student Life Committee heard from a panel of undergraduate and graduate student leaders on student financial well-being, including a discussion on food insecurity, which can impact the student experience from academics to health. The student panel discussion led the full Board to commit personally to funding The Store for the 2019-2020 academic year.
At Baylor, researchers have estimated that between 15 percent to 20 percent of students are food insecure, meaning they do not have reliable access to nutritious food. For at-risk populations such as first-generation, transfer or international students, the research showed that more than 92 percent of these students had experienced at least some level of food insecurity. Researchers also found that it was difficult for students to admit being hungry at an institution where it appeared that other students had abundant resources.
Other initiatives in place to help students include The Fridge, a series of mini-fridges throughout campus where students who need it most can access quick snacks and healthy meals, and free mobile food pantries and free farmers markets available to students each semester.
Visit The Store’s website to learn more about this initiative and how to donate much-needed items or volunteer. Volunteers help in several areas, including staffing The Store, stocking shelves and serving on shopping teams, Cohenour said.
Contributions to The Store also can be made online here.
ABOUT BAYLOR UNIVERSITY
Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked research institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 17,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 90 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.