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The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

The Student News Site of St. Joseph's University

The Hawk News

Meal swipe donation program launches to help students in need

Kevin+Hoban+%E2%80%9924%2C+Taryn+Bellamy+%E2%80%9924%2C+Adamaris+Bovasso+%E2%80%9924+and+Anna%0AOwens+%E2%80%9924+at+the+HawkHUB+and+Sharing+Excess+Trader+Joe%E2%80%99s+pop-up+Nov.%0A11+on+Campion+Lawn.+PHOTO%3A+ALLIE+MILLER+%E2%80%9924%2FTHE+HAWK
Kevin Hoban ’24, Taryn Bellamy ’24, Adamaris Bovasso ’24 and Anna Owens ’24 at the HawkHUB and Sharing Excess Trader Joe’s pop-up Nov. 11 on Campion Lawn. PHOTO: ALLIE MILLER ’24/THE HAWK

Starting Nov. 27, St. Joe’s students with meal plans will have the opportunity to donate unused swipes to students in need.

The meal swipe donation program, a partnership with HawkHUB, the Office of Student Success and Aramark, took three years to implement.

Kim Allen-Stuck, Ph.D., assistant vice president of Student Success and Educational Support, first began exploring meal swipe donations in early 2020. Allen-Stuck said the idea was delayed by the covid-19 pandemic and the logistical challenges of organizing such a large endeavor.

“We just needed to kind of get everything in a line,” Allen-Stuck said. “We needed Aramark to agree that we could do it. We needed students to be able to come up with a system for other students to donate swipes. And then I offered to be the area that dispatches swipes to folks in need.”

Kevin Hoban ’24, co-president of HawkHUB, a resource for St. Joe’s community members experiencing food or basic needs insecurity, made the program one of his priorities when he assumed his role in 2021 and worked to get the stakeholders involved.

“It was just a matter of getting the right people at the right time,” Hoban said. “We’ve been met with nothing but support from administrators, students, [Student] Senate. Aramark was super open to this. So it was really just a matter of timing and making sure everybody was on board and then making sure we have the capacity to actually roll it out.”

Meal donation programs, or swipe drives, are an increasingly popular option for universities looking to address food insecurity on their campuses. At St. Joe’s, students will be able to donate unused swipes using a form on the HawkHUB and Office of Student Success websites. They will be allowed to donate one swipe per semester, but it is possible for students in need to receive more than one swipe.

Donated swipes will be logged by the Office of Student Success’ Student in Need Committee, which is the resource students will consult if they are in need. The committee will notify Aramark of students who are to receive the donated swipes, who will then add the swipes to the student’s account.

The hope is that students will become aware of the program, and will approach the Student in Need Committee if they are in need, Hoban said. The swipes will start being dispersed next semester.

The swipe donation program got a boost from the University Student Senate, which endorsed the program. Chloe Palm-Rittle ’26, a class of 2026 representative and basic needs chair, wrote a statement of support, which was signed by Student Senators.

Palm-Rittle said Hoban’s pitch to Student Senate at an Oct. 9 meeting was met with immediate enthusiasm.

“I could not be happier with the collaboration and the support that we have found for this project,” Palm-Rittle said.

Hoban said he is grateful to everyone who helped make the program a reality.

“I think it’s only going to strengthen the sense of community at St. Joe’s, and I’m really hoping that it’s a resource that students in need are able to take advantage of,” Hoban said.

Jodi Finnegan, Aramark’s director of operations at the Hawk Hill campus, did not respond to questions from The Hawk by press time.

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Gavin Kuebler
Gavin Kuebler, Assistant Features Editor
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