Spring classes began at Western Technical College in La Crosse two weeks ago.
Along with the new trimester also came a new school program– Cav Packs.
Cav Packs are free bagged lunches that are available to all students in need for the first few weeks of classes.
The program started last Wednesday and has already been met with high praise.
“I’ve had other students come to me and be like, ‘this is such a beautiful thing and such a good idea,'” said Korto Thrune, a Western Technical College student.
The lunches are provided three days a week through Feb. 12.
Each bag contains a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, fruit, cheese sticks and slim jims.
Students say the idea of Cav Packs started in the classroom for a school project and now is a reality.
“We had to do a project. We met with our college president and we talked about Poverty Informed Practices,” Thrune said. “So, what that means is our campus is trying to do whatever we can for students to help them succeed. We were thinking, ‘How can we do that?’ and we decided to provide lunches.”
Western Technical College provided a grant for the lunches and most of the food comes from the union market.
The Cav Pack program is a part of the larger Poverty Informed Practice Initiative which aims to provide resources to students to help them succeed in class.
“It’s going to help them better focus on their school instead of worrying about the next meal and what to eat,” Thrune said.
Students say these first few weeks can be harder as financial aid hasn’t processed yet.
The project has been in the works since last summer.
“We actually did a trial run last semester, so we did it the last week of school,” Thrune said. “It went really well, so we decided to keep doing it.”
Western says there will be funding to continue the project in the future.
Food is also made available to students in need via the school’s pantry, Cavalier Cupboard, year-round.