Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Agriculture

Degree Level



Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness


Popp, Jennie

Committee Member/Reader

Kemper, Nathan

Committee Member/Second Reader

Hancox, Louise


The purpose of this study was to: 1) better understand food insecurity among first generation college students and how it might differ from that of other college students, and 2) gather opinions from students that may serve as solutions to alleviate food insecurity. This study was conducted with a mixed-methods survey that included both open-ended and close-ended questions. This study had six detailed parts, including research design, population sampling, instrumentation, data collection, data analysis, and finally, the results. All of these unique phases allowed for first generation students’ voices to be heard and to help meet their needs on the University of Arkansas campus.

This survey had 670 responses. Nearly 10% of respondents stated that they were experiencing food insecurity. Almost 18% stated they were first generation college students. A statistically significant greater percentage of African American and Hispanic Latino students were first generation compared to all other students while a statistically significant lower percentage of Caucasian students were first generation compared to other students.

The results suggested that first generation students were more likely to experience food insecurity affects than non-first generation students. Some of these experiences included worrying that their food would run out before they had money to buy more, and even having trouble concentrating at school and/or work due to the lack of food. One of the most surprising discoveries was the lack of knowledge and/or use of existing resources on the University of Arkansas campus. Lastly, respondents overwhelmingly favored solutions centered around expanding access to food programs through lower costs and increased awareness of existing campus resources via improved advertising.


Food insecurity, higher education, first generation

Included in

Food Security Commons