Budgeting food stamps is a difficult task to manage even in the best of circumstances. One way that some families have learned to budget their food stamp benefits each month is to use bulk shopping options
Being in college can feel like running a marathon at times. You have to work and yet, you aren't getting paid for that work, because it's to better yourself. Food stamps offer some help to college students who aren't making enough money at a job and yet aren't able to afford food because of tuition costs. When you're in college, an empty wallet becomes standard, simply because there is always a book or supply that you need for class, and grocery bills and entertainment funds are the first to get drained to pay for school. The USDA also announced that a record 45.8 billion Americans had used food stamps last year. With that mind, applying for food stamp may be one way to offset costs of going to college and being able to afford a good meal once in a while.
However, there have been questions whether college students should be allowed to receive food stamp aid. There have been significant increases in food stamp uses over the past few years, which can most likely be explained by the increase of the unemployed. Students do not qualify in every state to receive food stamps however, since many still fall within the status of their parents. However, other states have less strict policies and show that if anyone who works under 20 hours per week and meets income limits, then they qualify to receive some kind of benefits.
The basic meal plan at a university is about $1,500 dollars. That doesn't even necessarily provide three meals a day. That's also an incredible amount of money to simply eat one time a day and not have a choice really about how you eat your food or where it comes from, since you have to buy from the University. With food stamps, college students are able to buy and make their own foods.
There is strong political opposition to changing food stamp policies to allow more college students to use food stamps and to help them buy food on campus, for those who are living in the on campus dorms. There are only a handful of states that allow students to purchase food at fast food eateries, and even this has become a reason for concern, as lawmakers in Oregon saw usage of food stamps at Starbucks, since it was a part of a grocery store.
As college students continue to fight against rising tuition costs, there has to be some relief. While many believe the answer lies in financial aid, even that is hard to come by if you are living with your parents or under the age of 24, meaning that you are still dependent on your parents and their wealth. College students who live on their own and are not receiving substantial financial aid should apply for food stamps.