By Nadia Urbina, Mar. 8, 2022
Through the hectic bustle of afternoon classes, students had the chance to grab a snack and reenergize outdoors at ASI BEAT’s “Fruta Picada” event hosted March 4 at the
Students waited in line in front of the BRIC to sign in through a QR code for a free, fresh box of fruit and, for an added kick, a miniature bottle of the popular chili-lime condiment Tajín.
Lori Clark, ASI BEAT’s clerical supervisor, said she got the idea for this event after her son kept getting in trouble at school. When she asked him about it, he said he kept getting in trouble before lunch because he was hungry.
“I started thinking about Cal Poly and how we have so many of our students receive a Pell grant, and I started to wonder how many kids, or how many students, are having trouble in class because maybe they’re hungry,” said Clark. “That’s how I came up with giving out fruit during the month of March.”
Fruta picada, which translates to chopped fruit in Spanish, is considered a snack or dessert that originated in Mexico. The common fruits found in this snack are chopped watermelon, cantaloupe, mango, pineapple, orange and grapes.
Another reason behind Clark’s idea to give out snacks is food insecurity. Food insecurity is defined as the condition of limited or uncertain access to food, and to combat this issue, Cal Poly Pomona offers services such as the Poly Pantry and has programs to help others.
“Food insecurity, it definitely goes on campus, and so I think students get something nutritious, and that’s healthy, that could help them in class or maybe before or after a workout. It can just help with that sustainability, help with wellness and student success in class,” expressed Clark.
Matthew Peña, political science student, found out about the event after finishing a workout at the BRIC.
“Thursdays are when I take my workouts easy, so I run on the track for a couple laps, and today when I got out, I saw the ASI tents and people lining up,” said Peña. “I didn’t know about the event but I’m glad I was able to get a free, after-workout snack that’s still healthy; it’s super convenient.”
The event took started at 4 p.m. and went on until supplies lasted. The warm breeze and refreshing fruit led to a nice pick-me-up for students walking to their class or leaving campus.
Cynthia Patino, a volunteer for the event, shared that she did not expect the event to be a “big hit” due to the lack of registration.
“I think it’s an awesome thing that they’re doing. Food insecurity is a real issue, and I think it’s awesome for students to stop by and grab little snacks,” shared Patino. “I’m here all day two days a week and I know there’s days where I can’t really afford to buy lunch, and if I don’t have time in the morning with my kids and getting here, I might go hungry all day.”
Students interested in attending this Thursday can visit the ASI website for information and registration.
Feature image by Nadia Urbina
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