The Truth Behind Why UC Davis Students Are Only Eating One Meal A Day

The Truth Behind Why UC Davis Students Are Only Eating One Meal A Day

"Still falling so short that they're going without having their basic needs met"

Many students are not eating because they cannot afford three meals a day due to high food costs. The food on- and off-campus is more expensive than one can believe. Katy Murphy, a reporter for the Bay Area News Group, discusses in “1 in 5 University of California Students Struggles with Hunger, Study Finds,” how students in the University of California system are prone to food insecurity. She states:

Among the 42 percent of students UC determined to be “food insured”– with or without skipping meals – 29 percent report they had experienced difficulty studying because of hunger; about 25 percent reported having to choose between paying for food and other expenses, such as books and housing; and 15 percent had to choose between paying for food and medicine (Murphy).

This food insecurity in some cases leads students to take time off from school in order to pay their educational expenses.

It is not as simple as just asking their parents for money to cover their food expenses. Some students don’t have a parent and/or other relatives who can financially support them. Some students, not only must cover their own personal expenses, but also help their parent(s) with their expenses. After taking out all their subsidized and unsubsidized loans, some students still fall short at the end of the day in covering their educational expenses. Many students work more than one job to make up for this. In “The Number of Hungry and Homeless Students Rises Along with College Costs” Sara Goldrick-Rab, a sociologist, mentions how “it’s not just college students [that] need to work while in school…it’s that they’re working, and borrowing, and sometimes still falling so short that they’re going without having their basic needs met.” This leaves many students hungry at the edge of homelessness. The narratives of students facing hunger take many different forms, but in all cases not being able to cover meals affects their academics, health, and emotional well-being, as well as many other areas of life.

Supplying food for yourself every day is expensive. Let’s say you only have $30 for a week’s worth of food and you go to the CoHo and buy yourself a sandwich for $7. Then, for lunch, you go and buy yourself two pepperoni pizzas for $6. Later, to make your meal healthy you buy a chicken salad for $9. The total amount without the purchase of an apple, juice, coffee, snacks or any additional food snacks is $20 for that day.

The salad was the most expensive food choice of the meal mentioned above. Even a dollar or two makes a huge difference in one’s budget when facing a financial burden. Living off fast food, such as pizza, affects students’ physical and mental health, but after students have no alternative to purchasing fast food due to their financial circumstances since healthy food is much more expensive. There exist many resources on campus that support many students facing hunger, but not all of them.



The pantry is a student-run organization for UC Davis students. Their goal is to “ensure that no student [is] forced to choose between food and college cost.1” The pantry provides up to three meals or personal items a day to registered students as long as they show their ID (an anonymous system). It is housed in Freeborn, room 21. However, be aware that they are not open 24 hours and seven days a week. The pantry is open Monday thru Friday from 10–1pm and Monday thru Thursday from 4–6pm, so for those that are busy throughout the day will not have a chance to take this opportunity.


CalFresh provides students with monthly food expenses where students, if one meets the requirements, receives monthly food stamps for groceries at most grocery stores. However, because it is a federally funded program, it excludes the undocumented community. It also requires one to work under work study with 20 hours’ minimum in order to qualify. Students eligible are only those that get paid through work study, regardless if one works more than 20 hours.2 Therefore, not all students who are in need of food stamps receive this benefit.


Fruit & Veggie Up provides registered students with fresh produce. The days and times change every quarter so students need to check their days and time every quarter. It’s located in the UC Davis Student Health & Counseling Services, which it is first-come-first-serve.3 Therefore, many students that are in food need-base can’t always have access to this since classes may conflict with the short-scheduled time frame to go get produce before it is all gone.


The pantry scholarship raises money for students who are in need of food can apply to be awarded $250 per student, which is the quarter that one applies for. They only select 2-3 students every quarter,4the amount of awards varies every quarter, however; students will fill out an online application, which includes three statement responses, a resume, transcript, my awards’ page, and participate in an interview with all the staff. Therefore, this long process already impedes some students from applying since students facing hunger may only want to eat not compete with others to see who qualifies more. While some students that are low-income are accustomed to this normality of maybe eating very little, such as a meal a day that they don’t take this opportunity as if they are in need of it, which is a disadvantage for those particular students.


These are some of the resources provided to support students who are in need of food assistance because of one’s financial circumstances. If you have not checked out these resources, stop by and get yourself informed of some of the resources provided to UC Davis students, whether you are facing hunger or know of someone. It is a way to also keep yourself updated if there are additional resources implemented to support our students, if not yourself. On the other end, you can bring your ideas to the forefront on adding potential resources to better support ALL students facing food insecurity.

1 “The Pantry,” The Pantry,

2 “Welcome to the UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program,” UC CalFresh,

3 “Jump Menu” Fruit & Veggie Up!, Student Health and Counseling Services, \

4 The Pantry,

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When you think of the word color what do you think of? Honestly what comes to mind when you think of the word “colors”? What colors did you see? Could you feel it? Or taste it? “Producing different sensations on the eye as a result of the way the object reflects or emits light.” That's the definition of colors. It produces sensation, which is the mind's way of reacting to something that is of interest or exciting.

Growing up life was very black and white, not skin colors, but life was very, do this, don’t do that, or act like this, don't act like that. I was ‘raised’ to be a good person, but I was not seeing life in full color like I was CREATED to do. I was living a life filled with contentment. Being easily satisfied with mediocrity. I wasn’t living at all, I was just going through the motions, trying to make it to the next day. I lived that way for approximately 19 years of my life, (I’m 20 years old and I just turned 20 in December.)

See life is more than just black and white, there is a plethora of colors everywhere you look. We miss it every day we miss the beauty in life by looking at it so closed minded and believing that this is what life is supposed to be like just black and white. Thats a lie and a false hood we’ve (I’ve) got to stop believing. Life is filled with so much joy and peace but we miss it all the time by being so caught up in our own crap that we miss the miracles that are happening every day. What if I told you that you could miss the blessing you've been waiting to come to pass because you've chosen to look at life through your own eyes with your own spectacles focusing too much on the little things and not seeing the big picture? Too often we miss out on what God has for us because we think we know what is best for ourselves. I can't even begin to tell you how I really don’t know what is best for me, what’s best for me doesn’t come from myself, it comes from He who created me. I have truly tasted and seen the goodness that is God. I can confidently tell you that now I am seeing in perfect colors, life isn’t black and white anymore he wiped away all the dullness that was my old life, gave me a fresh pair of eyes that can see life the way it was meant to be seen, something to be cherished, loved, and lived abundantly. The old ways of life I was used to living, and thinking are no more, I struggle but through those struggles I am able to see God in it, and He is the definition of colors giving this sensation that I can’t even begin to explain. The color He brings into my life each day is captivating. Life is more than just black and white its filled with colors.

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How To Have a Safe and Memorable Prom 2018

The season is upon us

Spring is upon us and it is the time of year where high school boys and girls go out of their way to plan the perfect night. But what constitutes the perfect night for a 16 and 17 year old? Well, it always depends on the person, but I can definitely say there are only a few ways to guarantee safety and a good time. Prom is a rite of passage and should be treated as such.

Keep communication open. When you are going out as a group of teenagers, your parents tend to want to know where you are and what you are doing. This is not a ploy for control, but better yet a way to make sure you stay safe and come home alive. We live in a world where getting 'lit' is more important than maintaining a level of responsibility. So in short, keep your parental units updated on any change of plans or locations for the night.

Do not drink underage. Seriously, you can have a good time without alcohol. Don't spike the punch or try to bring in flasks. This for one is illegal but also unsafe. Some people drive themselves to and from and unsuspecting patrons would not take kindly to a DUI or death of anyone else. This includes the use of drugs. Just do not do it.

Go as a group. If you are trying to decide whether or not to go stag, with a date, or in a group, I highly suggest going as a group. You can always ditch the dance and go bowling after a few songs anyway. As long as you remember to remind your parental units. You will make many memories and save tons of money carpooling

Eat light before the dance. You do not want to be feeling sick while getting down at the dance, or want your clothes feeling tight and uncomfortable. After all you just spent a fortune on that dress and your makeup took forever. Eat light and non messy. Then after the dance IHOP or Waffle House, whatever after prom tradition you have to live.

Do not let petty drama ruin your night. Prom is a very important night but it can sometimes turn into a teenage drama fest if you let some things get to you. Have a good tie being you and having a good time with your friends.

No one can promise a perfect night, but you can always have a good time with what is given to you. So go out, be free, have a fantastic time and remember: BE SAFE.

Cover Image Credit: Pinterest

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