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Campus food pantry staff serve IU students with compassion


At Indiana University, we take pride in the care and support that we show every member of our IU family. One physical representation of our compassion is the food pantries on every campus that help students who are experiencing food insecurity. Just last week, I visited the Titans Feeding Titans food pantry at IU South Bend where we've placed the needs of students first.

Each day, our IU staff seek opportunities to expand what our pantries offer to better serve all of our students who need help. 

Among those staff are Nikeetha Farfan D'Souza, Amanda Fish, Elizabeth Glaze, and Janett Thomas, who are guiding our IU Bloomington students in the new Student Care and Resource Center that opened this fall. The center helps students navigate campus and connects them to resources, extra care, and support. It also includes a secondary Crimson Cupboard Food Pantry — led by Brandon Shurr, senior assistant director of community engagement — which combines personalized support and easy access to food. IU Bloomington students also can now request meal points if they need a hot meal on campus.

At IUPUI, Ty Davis, assistant dean of students and director for the Office of Student Advocacy and Support, and Erika Thomison, associate program director, are helping Paws' Pantry provide a more individualized experience. The location now offers 15-minute appointments to help shoppers plan ahead for times that are convenient to their schedules and avoid long waits in line. 

The Pantry at IU East is now offering refrigerated options, including milk and eggs. Deanna Cooper, program management assistant, is working to expand offerings further to include frozen items as well with a recent donation of a freezer.  

IU Southeast recently received a grant from Dare to Care, allowing the Grenadier Grab 'n Go pantry to expand from one location in the University Center to five more satellite locations. Each one offers hygiene products and easy access for students to get a snack. Staff like Karen Richie, counselor and care manager, also make sure that the items provided meet dietary-specific and cultural identity needs.

Addressing food insecurity is one of the many ways we prioritize care for our students and their success at IU and show our commitment to each other and our university. 


Pamela Whitten

Indiana University

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