Board of Trustees Member John Kepner Featured in Article in AGB

GMercyU Board of Trustees member John Kepner shared his experiences working with Catherine’s Cupboard, GMercyU’s on-campus food pantry, with the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB).

Kepner learned about food insecurity on college campuses during his first board meeting at GMercyU. Striving to learn more, he leveraged his personal connections to develop relationships with local nonprofit organizations in the area who work with food distribution and housing assistance to expand Catherine’s Cupboard.

Now, five years later, GMercyU and its six nonprofit partners have raised more than $400,000 from public and private sources to support the College Student Basic Needs Program (CSBNP).

At GMercyU, one of the first actions taken was to participate in the Hope Center’s national student survey. GMercyU also ran six student focus groups to obtain information about what students were experiencing. Once there was enough understanding of the problem at hand, GMercyU, Montgomery County Community College (MCCC), and local food pantries launched a pilot program through a consortium including four nonprofit organizations within the community.

The result of the consortium is the CSBNP, which helps students gain access to nutritious food through online order technology. The CSBNP has also created a fund for affordable housing scholarships and created a website for emergency assistance and community-based basic needs resources.

To learn more about GMercyU and the CSBNP, click here.

To read the full article, visit AGB.