New Food Pantry Enables Student Health and Wellness


Liza Turchinsky

Whole Foods employees serve free food to passing students and administrators during the new food pantry's grand opening ceremony.

Whole Foods has officially partnered with the Foothill College food pantry. Students experiencing poverty or otherwise in need will now be able to enjoy fresh food from Whole Foods with the ownership of an Owl Card and student ID number.

“The criteria is any student in need. It’s an honors system, so students in need can come and up to two times a week…to fill a tote bag with food,” said Dean of Student Affairs Sean Bogle. The pantry’s rules have shifted dramatically following the recent partnership with Whole Foods — a BOG fee waiver or CalWorks food stamps are no longer a requirement for students to access resources necessary for their wellbeing.

Students may select fresh produce like milk, vegetables, and fruit from a fridge, pantry essentials like rice and bread, and student requested toiletries. Donations to the Foothill-De Anza Foundation helped the college supply tooth brushes and tooth paste, shampoo, soaps, loofahs, and other personal and feminine hygiene essentials free of charge to students that sign in to the pantry.

“It’s amazing…we conducted a study and found that these were the things students needed,” said Foothill College President Nguyen.

The food pantry is located in the student activities office and is open from 8 – 4 p.m Monday through Thursday and 8 – 3 p.m. on Fridays. The grand opening ceremony of the new pantry began Thursday afternoon in the Cesar Chavez Plaza as Whole Foods employees served freshly made food and a cake decorated with the Foothill and Whole Foods logo to passing students and administrators.