Statement of Problem
Tuition is not the only extraordinary expense associated with college. Room and board taxes student budgets, even with efforts underway to make college housing affordable. At the University of Houston on-campus room and board exceeds $8,000 per academic year.
As compared to renting an apartment, dorm life is a relative bargain. But for college students, it's an expense they didn't have when they were living back home with their parents. At most campuses, textbooks, parking, health expenses, laundry, hygiene and other essential expenses stack up quickly. Students cut down the amount of food they eat and/or resort to typically cheaper, unhealthy options to make room in their budgets.
- No close grocery store
- No options for affordable, healthy meals after hours (when many students study)
- Reliable transportation off-campus is unavailable (students may not have money for Uber)
- Cannot afford a meal plan
- 50-60 students are serviced through the UEP Food Assistance program
- UEP office has offered/initiated special programs which includes meal cards to access the dining halls on campus
- We provide healthy snack options for students in our office.
- UEP office serves as the UH point of contact for monthly visits from TX Health and Human Service and Food Bank representative to assist students dealing with some form of food insecurity.
- Students that receive food assistance from Health and Human services receive on average $150 a month in aid. However in order to receive these benefits students must maintain a minimum of 20 hours per week in a job or authorized volunteer position.
- UEP has secured year-around housing for students in dorms that do not require a meal plan because students simply cannot afford them, while helping students obtain meals.