09:37 AM

Culinary students organize Thanksgiving buffet to support STC Food Pantry

Culinary students at South Texas College are recognizing the 1-year anniversary of a student food pantry at Pecan Campus dedicated to assisting students in need by providing meals and connecting them to available community resources.

The Culinary Arts Department at South Texas College held its first ever Thanksgiving buffet to raise funds for the food pantry Nov. 13.

“We did this buffet to raise funds but also raise awareness that the food pantry is here and exists as a service for our students,” said Jennifer Guerra, Chair of the Culinary Arts Department at STC. “This was a big event and it has been fun to see the students’ reactions, and they all seem to appreciate the fact that it’s for something good and for their fellow students who might be in need.”

“We did this buffet to raise funds but also raise awareness that the food pantry is here and exists as a service for our students."
Jennifer Guerra, Chair of the Culinary Arts Department

The food pantry was established with the support of the Food Bank RGV, which initially agreed to provide all food for free, including transportation to STC’s pantry for a full year. That contract with the Food Bank is slated to end January 2019.

The next step, according to coordinators of the pantry is to make it self-sustaining, and eventually open two more pantries at STC’s Mid Valley and Starr County campuses.

Located on the second floor in Building H at Pecan, the pantry is stocked with non-perishable food items, but services to students extend beyond food donations. By connecting them with counselors as well as staff at the college, students can have potential access to a wide range of assistance that can enable them to succeed while attending school.

At the Thanksgiving buffet organized by Culinary Arts, students served 350 faculty, staff, and students and raised over $2,284 to support the student food pantry and establish pantries on other STC campuses in the coming year.

“There has been a lot of preparation and a lot time that has gone into this but it has been a true team effort,” said culinary student, Roxanne Aguilar. “I am glad I could be here to help students.”

Students can contact any representative from Student Activities or counselor to begin the process to request assistance. The process is anonymous. For more information contact: Elibariki Nguma, Director of Student Activities and Wellness at South Texas College at 956-872-2515 or bariki@southtexascollege.edu.

To make a onetime monetary contribution to the Food Pantry please visit STC’s Marketplace at https://secure.touchnet.com/C20193_ustores/web/classic/store_main.jsp?STOREID=41

To make monthly contributions from your paycheck please follow these steps:

1. Through your Jagnet, click the “Employee” tab on the left.

2. Click on “Voluntary Deductions” which is found under ‘Human Resources”.

3. Click on “Add a New Benefit or Deduction” so you can select the “STC Food Pantry”