Join Cassandra at the 76th Professional Agricultural Workers Conference at Tuskegee University - December 2 - 4. Review the Draft Schedule here.
Understanding Food Systems in Mississippi: An Examination of Food Insecurity
Mississippi has the highest food insecurity prevalence rate in the nation and has sustained this ranking for numerous years. Since food insecurity is not an isolated phenomenon, understanding how it is impacting Mississippi food systems contributes to discussing strategies to reduce its prevalence. Cross-sectional data regarding food insecurity in Mississippi households was extracted from the Current Population Survey: Food Security Supplement for a ten-year period: 2006-2016. Crosstabulation, chi-square, analysis of variance, and binary logistic regression were used to determine which sociodemographic factors were a predictor variable for food insecurity among Mississippi households. The results of the study suggest that food systems in Mississippi need to be transformed for the disparity among families based on specific sociodemographic factors. Improved policies and programs designed to address the inadequacy of food consumption in Mississippi should be in place to reduce the prevalence of food insecurity.
About the Conference
The Professional Agricultural Workers Conference (PAWC) is a forum committed to a world that values and promotes equal opportunity equitable access to information and technology for sustainable development of communities and natural resources. The conference began in 1942 mainly with Tuskegee University and local and state support and participation. It is now national in scope including representatives from the national land grant community, and from the state, federal, and private sectors. The 2018 PAWC will be held in December 2nd to 4th at the Kellogg Conference Center, Tuskegee University.
Dr. Cassandra Hawkins is an Assistant Professor of Rural Public Policy and Planning in the Department of Social Sciences at Mississippi Valley State University. Her research interests include student pedagogy, American literature, agriculture policy, rural policy, socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, and food insecurity in Mississippi. Her dissertation, entitled “The Prevalence of Food Insecurity in Mississippi,” used secondary data from the Current Population Survey: Food Security Supplement over a ten-year period (2006-2016) to examine food insecurity in Mississippi. Her research interests include student pedagogy, American literature, agriculture policy, rural policy, socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers, and food insecurity in Mississippi. Her research efforts regarding African American farmers’ participation in USDA programs won Best Overall Faculty/Staff Oral at the 4th Annual Centers for Research Excellence Symposium: Research Seminar Series – Alcorn State University. Dr. Hawkins is a member of the Golden Key Honour Society, Beta Kappa Chi National Scientific Honor Society, Sigma Tau Delta Honor Society, and National Scholars Honor Society. Dr. Hawkins serves in numerous capacities, including serving on the Mississippi Food Policy Council Executive Board and as Chair-Elect 2018-2019 for the Rural Sociological Society Rural Poverty Research Interest Group.