One in four children do not know where their next meal is coming from. Studies show it's a problem for college students too.

A new food pantry is helping UTC students succeed in the classroom, by stomping out hunger.

Students who have food to eat do better in school.

UTC's student body has changed. There are more non-traditional students taking classes, which has opened the door for more people in need of basic essentials  like food.

Students come to UTC with the greatest intentions but not always with the best resources.

A student survey shows 43 percent of students need help affording their next meal. Even more know someone who is food insecure.

“She should’ve came to school with a free mind saying hey I have a new opportunity and I can actually do something with my life instead of worrying about where's my next meal going to come from,” said Alexandria Smith, a student.

After two years of planning, Scrappy's Cupboard is now open.

Students can visit for food assistance with no one knowing.

The only requirement is that they are registered for classes and taking at least one credit hour.

They can visit the pantry as much as they need but are asked to make good choices.

 “With that volunteer and look around are working with that student to make good choices not only are we trying to provide them with food we want them to take a balanced diet with the food,” said Brett Fuchs, Associate Dean of Students.

Scrappy's has non-perishable foods, personal hygiene items and even baby supplies for student who are expecting.

Connections to community resources, like job assistance, are also available.

“To try to find long term solutions for them so while we'll still give them food for a third of fourth time we are going to work and see what can we connect you with in the community,” said Brett Fuchs.

Students say it's the right thing to do.

“I think it's a good way to reach out and kind of reassure people they're not just there to take your money,” said Erin McCoy, a student.

It's a small pantry with a big impact, so students can stay focused on their studies.

The program is fueled by donations from students, athletes and staff.

Lee University and Wesleyan college both have a similar pantry.

Those pantries are supported by the Chattanooga Area Food Bank through non-profit affiliation.

UTC they are taking the following donations: Applesauce, beans, broth (e.g. beef, chicken, vegetable), chicken (canned), coffee, condiments (e.g. BBQ sauce, ketchup, mayonnaise, mustard), fruit (canned), instant meals, jelly/preserves, juice, macaroni & cheese, oatmeal, pasta, pasta sauce, peanut butter, protein bars/drinks, ramen noodles, rice, soup, sweeteners (e.g. sugar, Stevia), tea, tuna (canned), and vegetables (canned).

You can drop them off during these events:

CAMPUS DROP-OFF
Location: University Center Lobby by the Heritage Plaza entrance
Dates: October 2 - October 6
Time: 11:30 am - 3:30 pm

GAMEDAY DROP-OFF
In addition, food items can be dropped off on gameday, October 7, on Chestnut Street near Chattanooga Brewing Company. Just look for the UTC van.