Ohio State students team up to help eradicate hunger among fellow students
Food insecurity is a major issue on college campuses across the country, but thanks to a group of Buckeyes in one Ohio State Marion English course, choosing to raise funds to support their campus-based food pantry and "Friendly Fridges" and help ensure the shelves are stocked was an easy choice.
Sixteen Ohio State Marion students in Senior Lecturer, Amy Tibbals's English 3304 Business and Professional Writing course are running a fundraising campaign through Ohio State's BuckeyeFunder online fundraising platform as part of this unique spring semester project. The students are putting their professional writing and marketing skills to use to help raise funds for the Marion campus chapter of the Buckeye Food Alliance, which helps battle food insecurity issues on campus.
Ohio State Marion Senior Lecturer in English and course instructor, Amy Tibbals shared that based on a Marion campus-wide survey's results,26.7% of students have struggled at some point with knowing how they were going to afford their next meal.
This is why the goal of the Buckeye Food Alliance is to ensure all students who attend Ohio State Marion and Marion Technical College have access to free, nutritious food resources and remove a barrier to a student's success in college. Since 2018, they have created and supplied two campus food pantries and three "Friendly Fridges" which offer free, healthy resources to all students on the Marion campus.
The students in Tibbals's course set a goal to raise $2350 by March 2, 2023, and they have not only met but have exceeded that goal with days still to go in the campaign.
According to Khushi Pabboju, a freshman, business management major from Lewis Center, Ohio, the group has been emailing people in the local community to inform them about the campaign and ask for donations throughout spring semester.
"With the campaign, we have been promoting it through a variety of platforms," said Pabboju. "Learning the best way to get the most important points across to our audience has been very beneficial."
Derrick Zimmers, a sophomore majoring in Engineering Technology from Delaware Ohio believed working in a small group on this project has benefited the campaign a great deal.
"With a small group," Zimmers explained, "we can each discuss our ideas and figure out a plan on how to make the campaign grow. It also teaches us how to work with a group of people who we do not know and to learn how to agree and disagree in a respectful but professional manner."
Fourth year biology major Mehak Kaur from Delaware, Ohio shared that she sees both the opportunity for professional and personal growth working on this project.
For students taking part in the class, "the benefits of working on this project include being able to use our professional writing/communication skills to help the Ohio State Marion community," said Kaur.
"It’s great that we are able to use this project and raise money for healthy food items to help replenish of the friendly fridges on our campus. By doing so, we not only help the students get access to food but also bring more awareness to the issue of food insecurity on college campuses," she said.
"I feel happy and grateful to be able to help my fellow Buckeyes in this project. It's important that we bring more awareness to this topic of food Insecurity among college students since it is not commonly understood to be an issue," added Kaur.
"I think the friendly fridge and the food pantry on campus are a great start to help with this issue," she added.
Freshman psychology major Ben Kleinheinz of Powell, Ohio said, "I feel great knowing that we raised money to help fill our friendly fridges and food pantries, plus I for one will take food from the fridge sometimes."
There is still time to help. If you would like to donate to the campaign or to learn more visit: https://buckeyefunder.osu.edu/project/35593/donate or email firstname.lastname@example.org.