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UIC Pop-Up Pantry - Feeding the Flames since 2014



Welcome! Heading link

Thank you for taking the time to learn more about the Pop-Up Pantry!  This webpage provides information on the UIC Pop-Up Pantry that covers a variety of topics: Mission, History, Top Seven Things to Know about the Pantry, Shopping Guidelines, Registration, and Location/Hours.

Mission Heading link

The mission of the Wellness Center is to mitigate food insecurity among students at the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC) through the operation and management of the UIC Pop-Up Pantry.

History Heading link

During the summer of 2014, the UIC Wellness Center developed and launched the UIC Pop-Up Pantry, with the critical assistance of the Undergraduate Student Government, to target food insecurity on campus. The Pantry opened the week of Thanksgiving 2014 and served its first 100 students. Since its inception, the Wellness Center, with the support of UIC faculty, staff, students, USG, Office of the Vice-Chancellor for Student Affairs, Office of the Chancellor, and many other supporters, have helped the Pantry to serve on average 4,000 to 5,000 bags of food annually to UIC students who are experiencing food insecurity. As of May 2017, the Wellness Center became a full member of the Greater Chicago Food Depository (GCFD), making UIC the first University in the state of Illinois to achieve this status. This partnership gives the Pantry access to fresh fruits, vegetables, and dairy to better serve the nutritional needs of UIC students.

Information: Heading link

The UIC Pantry is operated and managed by the Wellness Center. 

You must be a registered UIC student to access the Pantry. Please bring your I-card to the Pantry as you must swipe in to shop.


Top 7 Things to Know About the Pantry:

  1. 100 percent of the food in the Pantry comes from donations. Supplies and selection are limited.
  2. As a member of the Greater Chicago Food Depository (GCFD), the UIC Pop-Up Pantry is required to adhere to GCFD rules and regulations.
  3. Every year GCFD hosts a Hunger Walk that requires the UIC Pop-Up Pantry to participate in order to earn money to purchase food for the pantry. Pantry users are asked to participate in order to support the Pantry that supplies food to them.
  4. GCFD Regulation: Each pantry user is allowed to shop up to twice a month. The GCFD system will alert staff if additional attempts are made.
  5. All Pantry users are automatically subscribed to the Wellness Listserv, which sends out Pantry reminders.
  6. Please remember to bring your own reusable bags and I-card each time you shop the Pantry.
  7. The Pop-Up Pantry is a community of UIC students and Wellness Center staff who are working hard on student’s behalf to find, deliver, and distribute donated food items. So, we ask that respectful language and honorable/ethical behaviors be in practice, for the sake of everyone, throughout the shopping experience.

Shopping Guidelines:

  1. Each pantry user is allowed to shop up to twice a month.
    • During the regular fall and spring semesters, we are open every Wednesday and Thursday from 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm.
    • During the summer and holiday breaks, Pantry hours are subject to change.
  2. You will sign in (electronically) and swipe your I-card for every visit.
  3. Bring sturdy, reusable bags at each visit to the Pantry.
  4. You will receive a shopping number, and when your number is called, you will receive a basket and enter the Pantry.
  5. Be courteous to other shoppers, students, and staff.
  6. Shopping is based on a point system.  Shoppers can get up to a total of 8 points per visit.
  7. Food items in the Pantry are labeled according to how many points they are worth.
  8. Since the Pantry is based on donations, it runs on a first-come-first-serve basis. Items are limited and vary week by week.


  1. Must be a registered UIC student.
  2. GCFD Regulation: All Pantry shoppers must register in order to receive resources from the UIC Pop-Up Pantry. Register by stopping at the Wellness Center, Student Center East 750 S. Halsted ST. Suite 238 front desk Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 4:00pm.
  3. Fill out two short intake forms (will take about 7 to 10 minutes).
  4. Show your UIC I-card at the time of registration.

Location/ Hours

  1. The pantry is located in Student Center East Tower – Montgomery Ward Gallery room 213 (behind elevators)
  2. Hours: Every Wednesday and Thursday from 1:00pm to 4:00pm
** Summer Break 2022 hours: Open Wednesdays 10am-4pm. 


** We are proud to offer fresh items such as milk and eggs but be mindful of your commute time.  Shop and plan accordingly so items do not spoil.  Especially during the hot summer months. 

** Individuals are served first come, first served.  Please be mindful that due to limited supplies and quantities of some items, they may be gone before you arrive to shop.  

UIC Pop-Up Pantry Heading link

Teaching Kitchen By Exec. Sous Chef Amy Lukasik - March 11, 2022 Heading link


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