Hungry, Homeless and in College
by Chicago Hope Lab, March 2017
Food and housing insecurity among the nation’s community college students threatens their health and
wellbeing, along with their academic achievements. Addressing these basic needs is critical to ensuring
that more students not only start college, but also have the opportunity to complete degrees.
This report presents findings from the largest survey ever conducted of basic needs insecurity among
college students. In 2015, the Wisconsin HOPE Lab published the research report Hungry to Learn, a
study based on a survey of approximately 4,000 students at ten community colleges in seven states.
This study includes more than 33,000 students at 70 community colleges in 24 states. While this is not a
nationally representative sample of students or colleges, it is far greater in size and diversity than prior
samples, and provides information to shed new light on critical issues warranting further research.
In particular, we draw on this new survey to provide information to help practitioners and policymakers
learn more about whether food and housing insecurity are more or less prevalent at certain types
of community colleges or among different parts of the country. We also share a detailed profile of
homeless community college students, including their financial circumstances and work behaviors, as
well as forms of support that they received. Read Here