Food Insecurity Among Community College Students: Prevalence and Association With Grade Point Average

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Title

Community College Journal of Research and Practice

Publication Date



This study investigated the prevalence of food insecurity among community college students (N = 301) and the relationship between food insecurity and student grade point average (GPA). It employed a cross-sectional intercept survey, utilizing the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Household Food Security Survey Module, student self-reported GPA, and demographic variables. The research setting was two community colleges in Maryland—one located in a low income urban area and one located in an affluent suburban area. Results demonstrate that 56% of the students in the overall sample were classified as food insecure. Students at higher risk of food insecurity included those who reported living alone and those who reported being single parents. Students identifying themselves as African American or as multiracial were also at increased risk for food insecurity. Food insecure students were more likely than food secure students to report a lower GPA (2.0–2.49) versus a higher GPA (3.5–4.0). Data suggest that food insecurity is an issue for a large percentage of the community college student sample. Food insecurity may have adverse effects on student academic performance and is a factor to be considered by college administrators, faculty, and students.