CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Now that campus life is buzzing again at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, some students are finding less time to accomplish an important task throughout their day. Eating food. But whether it stems from financial or time restraints, one junior on campus has a solution.
Juan David Campolargo, currently in his junior year, has initiated what he calls “UIUC Free Food.” It’s a Twitter account that issues alerts whenever a campus event has opportunities for free food. Which is something that happens daily, weekly, all year long but students in need may be unaware of they’re taking place. Now, when students see signs for free food on campus, they can submit a form on the Twitter account. That information is sent out in tweets, but Juan would eventually like to see text messages implemented as well.
But that’s not the only community effort keeping Juan busy, aside from his classes. In March, he and another junior, Aaryaman Patel, created “UIUC Talk Show.” At 22 episodes the former roommates seek out interesting people on campus doing interesting things. That includes professors, students, community leaders and even local celebrity faces like Why’s Guys Paul Kwiat who joins the Morning Show regularly. Juan and Aaryaman wanted to expose the community to individuals who may go otherwise unseen but are making a constant impact in their own ways. These episodes are on YouTube and a link to that will be at the end of this article.
“The UIUC Talk Show is a show where we introduce you to the most interesting people with the most interesting ideas. But besides that we’re starting a movement where people can think for themselves, they are able to do what they love, and really that’s what college should be about. It should be about trying new things to see what you like” says Juan David.
The UIUC Free Food Twitter account is active and has already benefitted students since its inception, including Kellen Francis, a sophomore. He joined us on the Morning Show to reflect on how he came across the assistance and the relief it provides. He wanted to encourage other students not to be ashamed to take the free food, especially with how demanding college can be on a person’s ability to provide regular meals.
“It’s definitely been a transition not living in the dorms, not having a dining hall. So I have to cook for myself all the time and sometimes I don’t have the time to or the materials to. So I was on the internet looking up free food around campus and I found their Twitter account and it was exactly what I was looking for. It’s awesome to have something to rely on if not myself” says Kellen.
If you’re a student in need and have a Twitter, you can find UIUC Food here.
You can reach Juan with any support or ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org
To watch every UIUC Talk Show episode, just click here to visit their YouTube.