Students at the City University of New York are often homeless and have trouble finding food, according to a study to be published Wednesday.
Roughly 48% of the 22,000 CUNY students who responded to a 2018 survey said they were food insecure in the prior 30 days. Fifty-five percent of CUNY respondents were housing insecure in the previous year and 14% of respondents were homeless in the previous year.
The findings in the City University of New York #RealCollege Survey report were released by the Hope Center at Temple University in Philadelphia.
Hope Center founding director and report co-author Sara Goldrick-Rab said the figures should serve as a warning that many CUNY students are suffering and need support — and their educations and future lives could be threatened.
“This is devastating to these students. It’s a very serious situation,” said Goldrick-Rab.
“Not having enough to eat in college, or dropping out because you can’t pay your rent, can create a lifelong cycle where you are trying to get out of poverty and can’t do it,” she added.
The CUNY housing data from the Hope Center report mirrors figures on homelessness in city public schools, where just over 10% of students reported experiencing homelessness in 2018.
A 2015 CUNY School of Public Health Study indicated that roughly 5,000 students experience homelessness in a given year and 5,000 to 15,000 undergraduates experience extreme forms of housing instability, such as evictions.
And other CUNY research indicated that estimated 82,000 CUNY undergraduates were food insecure in 2010 and by 2018 it was 52,550, University official said.
As of 2017, total full-time and part-time enrollment in the CUNY system stood at 274,099, according to the University’s web site.
CUNY spokesman Frank Sobrino said the University is making efforts to address issues of food insecurity among students.