Campus food policies, food security plans and a nascent effort to grow food on campus are the focuses of UC Santa Barbara’s second class of UC Global Food Initiative Fellows.
An extension of the broader UC Global Food Initiative that launched in July 2014, the GFI fellowships were introduced that fall as a way to engage students in the ongoing systemwide effort to address food security, health and sustainability. In spring 2015, UC President Janet Napolitano announced a two-year extension of the program, as well as additional funding — the amount for each fellowship is now to $4,000, up from $2,500, to support food-focused student research, projects or internships.
UCSB’s fellows for the 2015-2016 year are:
• Genesis Gilroy, communications, will tackle a project looking at the food landscape on campus with the goal of identifying potential policy changes that will improve access to and affordability of healthy, desirable foods for students.
• Jessica Alvarez, ecology and evolution, is focusing on the food components of the Campus Sustainability Plan. Her project will seek student feedback on the plan, identify food-related campaigns being led by student groups and promote collaborations and engage students in statewide efforts within the GFI, including the California Higher Education Food Summit in January 2016.
• Maile Hartsook, political science, and Nancy Yang, global studies, are partnering on the Edible Campus Project, seeing to reimagine underutilized spaces on campus to grow food that will be donated to the Associated Students Food Bank. The pair will use research to develop a long-term plan for launching a student-run farm on campus.
Learn more about the GFI program, and about fellows at other UC campuses, here.