PAWs Pantry

PAWS Pantry to help food insecure students

By James Byers, Social Marketing Team journalistic writer
February 4, 2019

PAWS pantry

According to a survey published by Temple University and the Wisconsin HOPE Lab, around 36% of college students are food insecure, which means they do not know where their next meal is coming from. The number rises when discussing community colleges, where it increases to 42%. When a student is food insecure, it makes it difficult for them to focus and do well in school, ultimately affecting their GPA and overall performance. PAWS Pantry is here to change that. 

PAWS Pantry was established by the Office of Civic Engagement. PAWS Pantry is a volunteer food pantry that aims to feed Frostburg State students that are food insecure. The grand opening is set for Thursday, February 7, 2019. A grand opening,  Melanie Hutter, AmeriCorps PAWS Pantry coordinator, says they have been preparing for since August. Through working in cooperation with the Maryland Food Bank, the pantry will receive 1,500-3,000 pounds of food per month to make available to FSU students in need.

There’s not a count yet for how many students are food insecure on campus, but the organizers are aware that it’s a problem.  

Even so, privacy is of the utmost importance to organizers. On distribution days, which are Mondays and Thursdays from 11 am to 6 pm, the PAWS Pantry is only open to FSU students and operated solely by the coordinator, Hutter.

How to sign up 

To sign up or refer an FSU student who needs food assistance, contact Hutter by email at or visit her office in Lane University Center 234. Registered students will receive updates and information regarding the pantry by email.

How to volunteer 

PAWS Pantry relies on volunteers to help with weekly shelf stocking and monthly truck deliveries. Students are also welcome to share budget-friendly recipes with their peers. If you are interested in volunteering or sharing a recipe, contact Melanie Hutter at 

How to donate

For monetary donations, give online (select Designation: Other, and type PAWS Pantry 70241 in text box) or make checks payable to: FSU Foundation (include PAWS Pantry 70241 on memo line) and mail to 101 Braddock Road, Frostburg, MD 21532. Monetary donations can also be dropped off at the Office of Civic Engagement in Lane University Center 234 or at the Lyric Building, 20 E Main Street, Frostburg.