Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
We are working to get back on the air in Vernal at 88.5. Listen anytime, anywhere here or on the UPR app.

University Food Pantry Seeks Funds To Feed Students

Managers of a campus food pantry are asking for donations to help feed students and faculty who don't have enough money to buy food. 

James Wirth manages the Utah State University Student Nutrition Access Center, or SNAC, pantry. During a typical school year the volunteers work to gather as much as 38,000 pounds of food used to provide meals for up to 1,600 students. Wirth helps coordinate volunteers who gather and sort food items from community farms, campus food services, and local businesses.

“And then we also recover a lot of the left-over food from Dining Services on campus,” Wirth said. “So we have been able to recover about 130,000 lbs. of food over the last 5 years from going to waste.”

Food insecurity happens when students, faculty or staff are unable to access affordable, nutritious food. Wirth has seen an increase in the number of students, faculty, and USU employees using the service since USU closed the Logan campus to classes in March.

“There is a lot of student, faculty and staff that don’t have the economic means to make a giant unprepared move half way through the semester,” Wirth said. “So there are a lot people without jobs connected to the university still in the Logan area.”

Unsure of what to expect in Fall 2020, SNAC organizers are preparing now for a possible increase in demands for food should USU hold classes on campus. They are fundraising to hire more student staff and to begin a food insecurity public education campaign.

Wirth says the SNAC program depends on volunteers to recover food from several locations on and off-campus, sort donations, and operate the pantry.

UPR news stories are made possible because of our members. If you have benefited from this story, consider making a donation here. Think of it like tipping your reporter.

At 14-years-old, Kerry began working as a reporter for KVEL “The Hot One” in Vernal, Utah. Her radio news interests led her to Logan where she became news director for KBLQ while attending Utah State University. She graduated USU with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and spent the next few years working for Utah Public Radio. Leaving UPR in 1993 she spent the next 14 years as the full time mother of four boys before returning in 2007. Kerry and her husband Boyd reside in Nibley.