Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science in Human Environmental Sciences

Degree Level



Human Nutrition and Hospitality Innovation


Trudo, Sabrina

Committee Member/Reader

Garrison, Betsy

Committee Member/Second Reader

Buckley, Nancy


Many colleges and universities offer students access to on-campus food pantries, yet very few students utilize these services despite reporting high rates of food insecurity. Considering the importance of a healthy diet on the developing minds of young adults, it is pertinent that colleges and universities find innovative ways to reach food insecure students. The purpose of this hybrid creative-research project was to creatively address commonly cited barriers of seeking food assistance (i.e., negative stigma, embarrassment, unknown location, awareness of resource, etc.) using public art. A mural was designed to encourage healthy eating behaviors and provide signage for the Jane B. Gearhart Full Circle Food Pantry at the University of Arkansas. A sample of food pantry patrons (n=51) took a survey either before or after the mural’s installation to assess their personal beliefs and attitudes towards using the food pantry and eating a healthy diet. Results of this project suggest that public art may influence perceptions of food pantries, human nutrition, and personal dietary habits. While this study lays a fresh foundation for combating the physical and psychological barriers of food pantry usage, further investigations of the relationship between public art and nutrition are needed.


mural, public art, nutrition, perception, food pantry