This year marks the first time in the 33-year-long history of the National Postsecondary Aid Study that students will be asked questions that help identify whether someone is food insecure, The Temple News reported.
The study, which will be conducted between March and November of this year, polls about 150,000 undergraduate and graduate students across 3,000 institutions on how they finance their education, including demographics, family circumstances, education and work experience and more, according to the Institute of Education Sciences.
This information can be used to inform policymakers and government officials when making education policy decisions, and by including food insecurity into this calculation, the NPSAS is collecting a more representative sample of students’ actual financial issues.
Approximately 39 percent of college students experience food insecurity, according to the Real College Survey by the Hope Center for College, Community and Justice, a research hub at Temple University that focuses on basic needs insecurity among college students.
The Editorial Board commends the Hope Center consistently pushing for more people to understand how food insecurity affects college students.
We are very enthusiastic about this change made to the NPSAS, and we see it as a step toward fighting economic disparity among college students.
We are interested to see the results of this report when they are released in 2022, and we implore our representatives, legislators and other government officials to use the information of this report to inform their policies.
One in three college students experience food insecurity — that’s a terrifying statistic to consider, and this effort to measure this issue is long overdue. But the Editorial Board is hopeful that this report will provide a necessary conversation to open the door for more progressive education policy changes.