2019 Strategic Grant
Legal-name: LONG BEACH COMMUNITY COLLEGE DISTRICT
Address: 4901 EAST CARSON STREET
City: LONG BEACH
Organizational-status: Educational organization, a subdivision of the State of California exempt from Federal income taxes under Internal Revenue Code Section 115, rather than under Section 501.
Ranking-title: DR. REAGAN F. ROMALI, SUPERINTENDENT-PRESIDENT
First-name: ERIN MURPHY
Title: INTERIM DIRECTOR, SPECIAL PROJECTS
Textarea-499: Expand Long Beach Community College District’s “Viking Vault” food pantry program to serve students with housing and food insecurity.
How-many-years: One Academic Year, August 2019-June 2020
What-is-project: According to the Hope Center’s California Community Colleges #RealCollege Survey published March 2019, 19% of students were homeless in the previous year, 60% were housing insecure, and 50% were food insecure. Forty percent were food AND housing insecure over the past year. For students struggling with both food and housing, the costs of textbooks and transportation create additional barriers to academic success.
Therefore, Long Beach City College (LBCC) has invested in additional support for students with food and housing insecurities at the Liberal Arts Campus (LAC) and the Pacific Coast Campus (PCC). We host “Better Breakfast” events offering free breakfast to all students and register students with CalFresh, the federal program providing monthly food benefits to those with low income. The Long Beach Community College District (LBCCD) Foundation also assists students—primarily through scholarships, but also by dispensing gift cards to a limited number of students with urgent needs.
In addition, we have established the “Viking Vault,” a food pantry where students may “shop” at no charge for donated groceries. However, although the majority of LBCC students attend classes at the LAC, the only location is at the PCC and open only on Thursdays from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Also, we currently do not have refrigerators to store perishable items. We therefore plan to add a location at the LAC, increase the operating hours at both campuses, and purchase refrigerators and additional shelves in order to offer a wider variety and quantity of groceries. To support this expansion, we have developed an overall project budget of $171,000 to hire staff, renovate facilities, purchase equipment, and create a marketing campaign focused on three audiences: 1) food and housing insecure students, 2) the community at large to solicit food and financial donations, and 3) potential partners to donate food and connect students with additional resources. The LBCF grant would be used specifically for equipment, facilities improvements, and marketing.
LBCC students live in Long Beach, and the college is a critical component of Long Beach’s economic vitality and growth. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics calculates that earnings for someone with an associate degree are 15% higher than for high school graduates. From adults refreshing skills to keep up with workplace demands to high-schoolers taking college-credit classes, our students attain the skills and training to improve their socioeconomic status. Those who are food secure can devote more resources to housing expenses while in school and will be better positioned to achieve the educational success that will allow them to support themselves in the future.
LBCC is currently creating a food and housing insecurities office to be led by a new program manager who will supervise the expanded Viking Vault program, gather data to improve service to students in need, and pursue other resources to aid students.
How-will-you-succeed: LBCF’s investment would allow LBCC to devote more resources to students seeking to improve their lives through education. We will know that we have succeeded when the following have been achieved:
-A Viking Vault has been established at the Liberal Arts Campus
-The Viking Vault at each campus has enough space to accommodate refrigerators to store perishable items as well as additional furniture to store and display shelf-stable groceries
-The Viking Vault’s hours of operation are expanded to serve a greater number of students, including those who attend part-time and/or in the evenings
-Students have a greater awareness of the expanded resources available to them, as demonstrated by an increase of at least 30% in the number of students served in academic year 2019-20 as compared to 2018-19
-LBCC has developed partnerships with more local service providers, resulting in increased donations to support the Viking Vault program and a greater awareness of the community resources available to students experiencing food and housing insecurity
-The community at large provides food and financial donations to support the Viking Vault program
-LBCC’s housing and food insecurities office is established, including hiring a program manager and staff to support the Viking Vault program
We will sustain the program by including staff salaries in LBCC’s annual institutional budget, maintaining the equipment and facilities, and broadening the reach of the marketing campaign in order to attract ongoing donations. Program management will include regularly reporting on the success of the Viking Vault program, including acknowledgement of support from LBCF should we receive grant funding, and leveraging the grant from LBCF—along with LBCC’s institutional investment—to secure additional funding and resources from other educational and community partners.
Who-are-you: Founded in 1927, Long Beach City College consists of two campuses with an enrollment of more than 25,000 students each semester. The college’s primary purpose is to prepare students for transfer to baccalaureate-granting institutions, entry into work, or career development, and to support businesses in economic development. LBCC serves the cities of Long Beach, Lakewood, Signal Hill, and Avalon and promotes equitable student learning and achievement, academic excellence, and workforce development by delivering high-quality educational programs and support services to our diverse communities.
LBCC partners include the City of Long Beach; the Port of Long Beach; California State University, Long Beach; Long Beach Unified School District; Centro CHA; Long Beach School for Adults; the LGBTQ Center of Long Beach; the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank; many local businesses; and other governmental and educational institutions.