Food insecurity, the state of being without reliable access to a sufficient quantity of affordable, nutritious food, is a growing but frequently-hidden problem on college campuses nation-wide.
While a national study has been completed on the issue, the Idaho Policy Institute conducted a survey to determine the level of food insecurity locally. IPI surveyed all Boise State University Foundation 200 students during the Spring 2017 semester (N=1,138) asking 33 questions and collecting 74 data points on each respondent. A total 257 usable responses were collected, for a 23% response rate. IPI utilized the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s “U.S. Adult Food Security Survey Module: Three-Stage design, With Screeners” scoring methodology to score the respondent’s level of food security. The survey was then utilized in a Master of Public Policy project which made actionable recommendations on how best to address food insecurity on campus.
The survey was administered online via Qualtrics and was open for three weeks (1/24 thru 2/14). IPI’s Dr. Matthew May adds, “Because the population was limited to UF200 students, plus the low response rate, generalizability is limited but the results do serve as a starting point for assessing how Boise State students compare with the national numbers.”