“As the largest postsecondary education provider in the state of Minnesota, and the primary educator of our states law enforcement, Minnesota State has a responsibility to the people of this state to take a hard look at the education and training we are providing, and ensure that our law enforcement are properly prepared to serve the communities of color we are training them to protect.”
Incoming President Mayowa testimony before the Minnesota State Board of Trustees on June 17, 2020
Our Response to the Murder of George Floyd
The world watched in horror the video of George Floyd being murdered by a Minneapolis police officer. This brutal act and the events that followed it, did not take place in some far off city or state, this was in OUR own community, in OUR backyard, and just three miles from one of OUR colleges. The LeadMN Governing Council responded with a resolution on June 5th calling on Minnesota State to convene a statewide working group to review its law enforcement programs. And two weeks later the Board of Trustees took that action. LeadMN President Mayowa sits on this committee and works to ensure that real change emerges from this horrible event.
The First Statewide Real College Survey
Last year LeadMN worked and paid for 25 community colleges to enroll in the Hope Center’s Real College survey. This past spring the data was released, showing that Minnesota is not immune to issues of food insecurity and homelessness on community college campuses.
This statewide and campus data provides a benchmark for campuses to act in addressing this problem that was only made worse by the global pandemic. The report found that students of color are more susceptible to food and housing insecurity, and that addressing students’ basic needs is an equity issue that state policy makers need to do more to address. The survey has sparked more action on the campus level to begin to address these issues.
16 Campuses Designated as Hunger Free Campuses
The Hunger Free Campus Act passed during the 2019 legislative session. Since then, student leaders and campuses have been working hard to fulfill the five requirements outlined in the law to be designated as a Hunger Free campus.
In just one year, the Hunger Free Campus act has proven to be highly successful in both motivating and recognizing the work that campuses are doing to end college hunger. This initiative has helped many of our campuses start thinking about or re-thinking basic needs as a serious issue. Congratulations to these 16 community and technical colleges for being awarded the Hunger Free Campus designation.
Partnerships with community organizations to reduce food insecurity on campus included the following: Second Harvest Heartland, Bridge to Benefits, Good in the Hood, Ruby’s Pantry, Family Pathways, Channel 1 food bank, Open Door, Community Action Duluth, Groveland Food Shelf, VEAP, Hope for the Community, St. Vincent’s Food Pantry, University of Minnesota Extension, and MNSU Campus Kitchen, and various county offices.
HUNGER FREE CAMPUS TASKFORCES PROVIDE LEADERSHIP
With the efforts of the PTCC Hunger Free Campus Task force we now have a mobile food pantry that comes to our campus, we have held four food insecurity awareness events, plus we have food for students during Welcome Week and De-Stress Fest, we have snack bowls and Keurigs around campus for students, and we are currently doing a food drive during the month of March to replenish the food pantry. We have had a total of 37 students use the mobile food pantry during the two times they have been to campus. During our SNAPO for groceries events we average 125 students and have given away 35 bags of groceries.
PINE TECHNICAL COLLEGE