Community Supports Students in Need Through Arcadia Food Pantry

By Caitlin Burns | April 27, 2020

Image of boxed food on shelves

As the Arcadia University community quickly adapted to the changing educational landscape during coronavirus, departments and offices didn’t forget their dedication to students in need.

Throughout the academic year, Knights for Nutrition food pantry serves undergraduate and graduate students who experience food insecurity. Through coordinated efforts by the Knights for Nutrition Committee—which includes Community and Civic Engagement Center (CCEC), Metz, and Student Affairs—the small number of students who remain in Oak Summit can continue to receive fresh and non-perishable foods as well as hygiene and cleaning products from the food pantry.

“We want to make sure that students have access to nutritional foods during this difficult time,” said Dr. Angela McNeil, chair of the Knights for Nutrition Committee and director of the Act 101/Gateway to Success programs in Graduate and Undergraduate Studies. “[Assistant Dean of Students] Bre Donnelly made this happen. As a nonessential employee, I wasn’t sure how the pantry was going to remain open, but [Donnelly] jumped right in.”

Since spring break, Donnelly has ensured that the pantry remains accessible to students on campus and is stocked with non-perishable foods. Her efforts have bolstered the availability of non-perishable foods as well as hygiene and cleaning products. 

In addition to Donnelly’s donations, Metz Culinary Management donated hundreds of pounds of perishable foods, which would have been used by dining services if students had continued classes on campus. The donation included fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy and non-dairy milk, yogurt, eggs, meats, and juices. In addition to this food donation, Metz donates $10,000 each year to the pantry.

Supplies to make face masks are also available in the pantry.

CCEC has assisted in coordinating the organization of foods and products when the pantry moved from Knight Hall to Oak Summit computer lab.

Along with Dr. McNeil, the Knights for Nutrition Committee includes Alexis Lambert ’20MPH, Andrew Goretsky, dean of students, Cindy Rubino, director of Community and Civic Engagement, Jordan Beck ’20, Caitlin Aldridge ’20, Dan Callan, general manager of Metz, Dr. Alison LaLond Wyant, director of the Office of Social Impact & Innovation, and Jennifer Jezyk, coordinator of Community & Civic Engagement Center.

In addition to time and food donations, the pantry has been supported by gifts made to the Fund for Arcadia as well as The Patricia Kind Family Foundation, The Wassermann-Lindo Foundation, and The Friendship-Williams Lodge No. 400 F&AM.

While the Knights for Nutrition food pantry is only open to students still residing on campus, CCEC has provided information on local food pantries and food access resources in the region.