First, let me share a warm welcome to new Algonquin College students, and a warm welcome back to all of those returning! If this is your first time seeing me, my name is Emily Ferguson. I’m a full-time student in business administration, and last spring, I was elected President of the Algonquin Students’ Association.

Through the Algonquin Times, I am lucky to have a platform to speak freely and share my thoughts with you all once per month in this president’s column. This month, I want to share one of the essential services provided to students by the SA.

The Food Cupboard is located on the Ottawa campus in C033 and is operated by the Students’ Association. Since December of 2014, it has been a discreet and confidential service for students experiencing financial difficulty and cannot purchase food for their households.

Students can access the Food Cupboard once per month for a three-day supply of food and supplies.

If you require food but are in isolation or are not comfortable visiting in person, virtual options are available. The SA, and our Food Cupboard, are dedicated to continuing to help students. Now, more than ever, we need the support of the Algonquin College community.

We are seeing more students than ever who are struggling to find work because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and sometimes they find themselves having to decide between paying their rent over purchasing food.

On October 2, between 10:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m., we will be hosting a contactless food drive outside of C building. We are looking for the support of our strong and resilient community. If you’d like to contribute but cannot attend the food drive in person, you can donate online through Canada Helps. You can find the information on our website at

Some of the most in-demand items are peanut butter, canned vegetables, canned fish, cereal, canned chickpeas, lentils, and beans.

I’ve seen how wonderful the Algonquin College community is, and we are at our best when we’re supporting each other.

The SA continues to support students, both in-person on campus, and online. Over the last seven months, we have worked hard to provide our services virtually and continue to adapt to the situation we are all finding ourselves in.

If you or a classmate are experiencing food insecurity, please reach out to the SA for support.