As the end of the spring 2016 semester draws near, some MTSU students will need help with nourishment to sustain them through their studies and their upcoming final exams in late April and early May.
The MTSU Student Food Pantry in Room 210 of the Student Services and Admissions Center, commonly known as the MT One Stop, is running low and needs donations of just about every conceivable kind of food that can be transported conveniently.
"This is when visits to the pantry pick up, when students get to the end of the semester, running out of meal plans," said Becca Seul, food pantry and MT One Stop coordinator. "They're more likely to come here to get help."
While the pantry has a wealth of canned vegetables, students' hectic schedules and the fact that many of them commute prompt them to choose more portable food that needs little or no preparation.
These items include granola bars, water, juices, Ramen noodles, macaroni and cheese cups, pudding cups, muffins, raisins, fruit cups, crackers and popcorn.
In addition, the number of homeless and low-income students on campus has almost tripled in the past two years, with close to 100 students who currently qualify as homeless or at risk, Seul said. Also, the university's homeless and foster care students stay on campus throughout the summer semester.
"Students who go to class hungry are less likely to succeed," Seul said. "So we want to make sure that they are as poised for success as possible."
Students who want to obtain food pantry items need only go to the second floor of the MT One Stop and present a current student ID and a current class schedule.
"We chose to do that because it's very difficult for students oftentimes to access food pantries off campus," said Seul.