High Level of Homelessness and Hunger Among Black Students at Community Colleges

Wisconsin_hope_lab_hungry_to_learn copyA new study published by the Wisconsin HOPE Lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison finds that half of all community college students are struggling with food and/or housing insecurity. Fully 20 percent are hungry and 13 percent are homeless.

The problems of homelessness and hunger were particularly apparent among African American students at community colleges. Some 31 percent of African American students – nearly one third of all African American students at community colleges – exhibited very low levels of food security, compared to 19 percent of non-Hispanic White students. More than half of the African American students surveyed experienced housing insecurity, with 18 percent experiencing homelessness, compared to 35 percent housing insecurity and 11 percent homelessness among non-Hispanic white students.

The Wisconsin HOPE Lab was founded in 2013. It is a translational research laboratory aimed at improving equitable outcomes in postsecondary education. The lab is funded by a grant from the Great Lakes Higher Educational Guaranty Corporation.

The study, Hungry to Learn: Addressing Food and Housing Insecurity Among Undergraduates, may be downloaded by clicking here.

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