Diversity And Inclusion
- 39% of respondents were food insecure in the prior 30 days. Over the past five years of surveys, rates of food insecurity among students ranged from 42% to 56% at two-year institutions and from 33% to 42% at four-year institutions, with an overall weighted average of 43%.
- During the 30 days preceding the survey, approximately 42% of survey respondents attending two-year institutions experienced food insecurity, with 17% assessed at the low level and 25% at the very low level of food security. Approximately 33% of survey respondents at four-year institutions experienced food insecurity, with 14% assessed at the low level and 19% at the very low level of food security. Almost half of survey respondents attending two-year institutions worried about running out of food (44%) or could not afford to eat balanced meals (45%), compared to 36% and 38% of respondents at four-year institutions, respectively.
- 46% of respondents were housing insecure in the previous year. Over the past five years of surveys, rates of housing insecurity among students ranged from 46% to 60% at two-year institutions and from 35% to 48% at four-year institutions, with an overall weighted average of 48%.
- Half of survey respondents at two-year institutions and 35% at four-year institutions experienced housing insecurity in the past 12 months. The most commonly reported challenge is experiencing a rent or mortgage increase that made it difficult to pay (23% of students at two-year institutions and 15% at four-year institutions). Seven percent of survey respondents at two-year institutions and 6% at four-year institutions left their household because they felt unsafe.
- 17% of respondents were homeless in the previous year. Over the past five years of surveys, rates of homelessness among students ranged from 12% to 18% at two-year institutions and from 9% to 16% at four-year institutions, with an overall weighted average of 16%.
- Five percent of respondents at two-year institutions self-identify as homeless; 12% experience homelessness but do not self-identify as homeless. Two percent of respondents at four-year institutions self-identify as homeless; 10% experience homelessness but do not self-identify as homeless. The vast majority of students who experience homelessness temporarily stay with a relative or friend, or couch surf.
- Six in 10 community college students responding to the survey experienced food insecurity, housing insecurity, or homelessness during the previous year, whereas about half of four-year students did. Thirty-two percent of respondents from two-year institutions and 20% from four-year institutions were both food and housing insecure in the past year.
- There is wide variation in rates of food insecurity across college and university participants. For the most part, rates of food insecurity range between 35% and 49% at two-year institutions and between 24% and 40% at four-year institutions. Institution-level rates of housing insecurity are also fairly different across sectors, with between 41% and 59% of students experiencing housing insecurity at two-year institutions compared to between 25% and 47% of students at four-year institutions. Institution-level rates of student homelessness, generally range from 13% to 23% at two-year institutions and 11% to 21% at four year institutions.
- White students have lower rates of food insecurity (36%) as compared to most of their peers; rates of food insecurity among Hispanic or Latinx (47%), Black (54%), and Indigenous (60%) students are higher. Though rates are higher for housing insecurity than food insecurity, the disparities across racial and ethnic groups are similar. American Indian, Alaskan Native or Indigenous students have the highest rates of homelessness, followed by Pacific Islander or Native Hawaiian students. As with the other basic needs insecurities, rates of homelessness among White students are lower than most of their peers.
- The overall rate of housing insecurity for students attending school part-time is 54%, approximately 11 percentage points higher than the overall rate for those attending full-time. Students who have spent more than three years in college are more likely to experience housing insecurity than those in college less than one year. Graduate students experience basic need insecurity at approximately the same rates as undergraduates.
- Rates of food insecurity and housing insecurity are lowest among male students; non-binary and transgender students have the highest rates of food and housing insecurity and homelessness.