An Analysis of the Use of the On-Campus Food Bank by International Graduate Students at the University of Guelph

Pereira, Rebecca
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University of Guelph

In this thesis I discuss the experiences of international graduate students at the University of Guelph, who have used or are current users of the CSA on-campus food bank. This exploration illuminates the barriers that international graduate students face when coming to the University of Guelph to gain an education. In this thesis, I demonstrate factors that help shape the use of the food bank by international graduate students. I use the term “food citizenship” to explain the levels of intersectionality that international students have, and how food impacts the way that they fit into their communities. Drawing on my data, I demonstrate that food insecurity negatively impacts the wellbeing of international graduate students. I argue that, while international students are being supported by the food bank, they are still food insecure given the FAO (2012) definition of food insecurity. Consequently, I argue that the on-campus food bank is an essential resource that should be supported by the University of Guelph’s administration, but that there may be better supports that target housing, employment and student wellbeing, which can be implemented to assist international graduate students with their transition.

International Students, Food Security, Anthropology, Wellbeing