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Aiken Technical College to Establish New Food Pantry
Nikasha N Dicks
/ Categories: Press Releases

Aiken Technical College to Establish New Food Pantry

Aiken Technical College will establish a new student-centered food pantry thanks to a grant from the Community Foundation of the CSRA.

The ATC Foundation has received $13,500 to transform the College’s unused cafeteria space into the food pantry, add appropriate appliances and storage, and stock various items in addition to food received from Golden Harvest Food Bank, which is partnering with Aiken Tech for the food pantry.

The campus food pantry is projected to open in August 2024.

“The ATC Foundation is grateful for the Community Foundation’s support as it shows a commitment to meeting students’ basic needs so that they can be successful in the classroom and successfully enter the regional workforce,” said ATC Foundation Director Beth LaClair, Ph.D.

The College has had a Blessing Box on its campus since 2019 and has seen increased usage, particularly in recent years. The addition of the food pantry will extend access to nutritious, essential food items, said Aiken Tech Associate Vice President of Enrollment Management and Student Affairs Melinda Rodgers.

“With an estimated one in three students experiencing food insecurity nationwide, according to the National Center on Safe Supportive Learning Environments, the Aiken Tech food pantry will serve as a crucial resource to ensure that no student goes hungry while pursuing their education,” said Rodgers. “It is another way that ATC can help students, especially those who are low-income, complete their program of study and thus rise out of situational and/or generational poverty, which is central to our mission of educational and workforce development.”

In addition to food insecurity, the ATC Foundation has worked to address other critical student needs through scholarships, completion grants for students needing financial assistance to finish their credentials, and student emergency grants for those facing a financial need that is preventing them from completing their studies.

Those interested in supporting these efforts can contact the ATC Foundation at atcfoundation@atc.edu or (803) 508-7413 for more information.

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