By: Sonia Lemus
Assistant News Editor
Community members were excited to join CSU Bakersfield for the pantry ribbon cutting ceremony in efforts to help battle hunger at CSUB.
CSUB held the pantry ribbon cutting event on Sept. 19. Administrators, faculty, students, and community leaders, like Mayor Karen Goh, and Tanner Dyrness, a representative from the office of Assemblyman Vince Fong were present at the event.
The event began in the Stockdale Room in the former Runner Cafe, with Dr. Evelyn Young Spath delivering a history of the journey that lead to the opening of the pantry. Then, the ceremony proceeded outside to where the food pantry is located between the Student Union and Modular III.
The journey began in 2007 with the creation of the sustainability committee. Then in 2013, Professor Aaron Hegde, along with graduate student Evabelen A. Ventura found that 40 percent of the student population had been struggling with hunger.
When a student approached Chancellor Timothy P. White in 2015, whom had been homeless and hungry while he was a student, the Chancellor conducted a study on hunger amongst students .
Also in 2015, Dr. Thomas Wallace created a 20-member housing and food security committee. This committee then created a sub-committee that helped in the creation of the food pantry.
“The ultimate goal is to end every food insecurity problem on our campus,” said Associated Students Inc President Mariela Gomez.
Gomez expressed her concern for students finding themselves having to choose between food and school supplies. She said that now with the food pantry students will not have to worry about food and be able to focus on their education.
“We are here for one reason, student success, and together we can achieve just that,” said Gomez.
CSUB President Dr. Horace Mitchell said, “The needs of our students will continue to be there, and we want to make sure that we continue to respond to those needs.”
Dr. Mitchell went on to say that CSUB is a caring community, caring for the needs of others. It is also a collaborative community, working together to help meet those needs.
Mayor Goh presented a certificate of appreciation for the CSUB food pantry to Dr. Mitchell who accepted it on behalf of everyone who worked to make this project.
“Let’s challenge each other so we do not have food insecurity in this campus,” said Goh.
Dyrness presented a certificate of recognition for CSUB’s food pantry from assembly member Vince Fong.
After the presentation of the certificates, Dr. Mitchell, along with everyone who helped with the creation of the food pantry, cut the ribbon and opened the door to help fight food insecurity for students.