New Program Aims To Alleviate Food Insecurities for Off-campus Students
With the launch of the new Swipe Out Hunger program, the Office of Student Life continues its mission to make a difference in food insecurity for off-campus students.
Swipe Out Hunger is a program supported by Sodexo in which they provide access to meals for college students who need them. This year, Sodexo decided to approach The Office of Student Life and partner with them. For this program, commuter students can apply and receive 10 meal swipes to their Flames Pass to be redeemed at the Food Court at Reber-Thomas.
Office of Student Life Director Ted Whitney is thrilled with the progress of the new program.
“Half of our commuter population purchases a meal plan,” Whitney said. “I don’t know if the other half will need this program – but hundreds will.”
The Swipe Out Hunger program has seen hundreds of requests coming in since its official launch on Sept. 27. Many have left responses in the questionnaire that applicants are required to fill out.
“This program encourages me to stay in classes by letting me go quickly from getting food to class. It’s also easier to think when you’re not hungry,” one student explained.
Another student wrote about how convenient this program is for them during the typical school day.
“If I could buy food on campus, I wouldn’t have to decide between going hungry, spending money or missing a class to eat lunch,” they said.
If a student is interested in utilizing the Swipe Out Hunger program, they can go to Liberty’s website and type in “Swipe Out Hunger” in the search bar at the top of the page. Once they click the first link, they will find themselves at the Commuter Food Pantry page. Then, they can scroll down to additional sources and click the Swipe Out Hunger link to fill out an application.
With the Office of Student Life offering both the food pantry and the Swipe Out Hunger program, commuter students have many resources at their disposal if they find themselves facing a lack of food.
Whitney is always looking to see if there is more that can be done to help off-campus students stay in college and persist towards graduation.
“I’m always investigating what we should be doing or could be doing,” Whitney said. “So, I’m always looking at other commuter programs in higher education. If something came up that intrigued me, something that would meet a need, I would probably implement it.”
Several departments collaborated to make Swipe Out Hunger a reality at Liberty including Student Life, Sodexo, Financial Aid, ID & Campus Services, Information Technology, and Analytics & Decision Support.
Commuters are welcome to talk to the staff in Student Life if they have questions about the Swipe Out Hunger program or if they want to know more about the programs and services available for off-campus students. Commuter Student Life is located in Green Hall 1887.
Apply for Swipe Out Hunger Meal Swipes at www.liberty.edu/SwipeOutHunger.
Make an appointment for the Commuter Food Pantry at https://www.liberty.edu/students/off-campus/commuter/food-pantry/.
Gambino is a news reporter.