DU Feeds Opens Permanent On-Campus Food Pantry
DU Feeds, Dominican University’s initiative to address food insecurity on campus, gained a permanent home this year.
The DU Feeds food pantry opened in early November in Mazzuchelli 276, a former office space just steps from the Center for Cultural Liberation.
Sponsored by the Student Nutrition and Dietetics Association, the pantry allows for the storage of nonperishable, nutritious food items from which students can select at no cost during designated hours, two to three days each week.
Previously, students could pick up bags of food at “pop up” events held on campus. The new food pantry provides students with an established location, a “shopping-type” experience and additional opportunities to receive food, said DU Feeds Student Coordinator Anna Martucci.
“It feels good that we are feeding students and that people can access more than they have in the past,” she noted.
DU Feeds was established in 2019 by nutrition students Danielle Cahalan, Jennifer Ethridge and Mike Zielinski. It is funded largely through donations secured by University Advancement.
According to a survey of 478 students who responded last spring, 29% identified some level of food insecurity, said Dr. Sarah Jones, assistant professor of nutrition sciences at Dominican.
Of those with food insecurity, 41% indicated a preference for a market experience, which is what the food pantry offers by allowing students to make their selections from the shelves, Jones said.
“The motto of DU Feeds is ‘no student should go to class hungry,’” she said. “Now that we have a permanent location, I think we can continue with that motto in even bigger ways.”
Food insecurity is defined as having limited or uncertain access to sufficient, nutritious food on a regular basis, largely based on financial need. Students dealing with food insecurity are invited to use the pantry and no registration process is required.
For more information on making a financial donation, visit connect.dom.edu/du-feeds.