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Linking Nutrition, Stress, and Athletic Performance Among College Athletes

Project Overview

India Malkan, Studio Undergraduate Researcher

The goal of my research is to understand why SNAP enrollment is so much higher in rural counties in southeastern Colorado than rural counties in northwestern Colorado. To do this, I started by obtaining SNAP enrollment data from Hunger Free Colorado’s 2019 Food Stamp Impact Reports and using this data to generate a map of rural SNAP enrollment in QGIS. Upon generating this map, it quickly became apparent that rural counties in southeastern Colorado tend to have much higher SNAP enrollment than rural counties in other regions of Colorado—particularly northwestern Colorado. Using the R programming language, I ran an ANOVA test to determine whether the difference in enrollment between regions was statistically significant. Upon finding that it was, I then ran two sample t-tests between the regions to determine that there was a statistically significant difference in SNAP enrollment between northwest and southeast Colorado as well as between southwest and southeast Colorado. To understand why this regional disparity exists, I gathered county-level demographic data from the 2020 US Census as well as county-level industry data from the Colorado Department of Local Affairs. Using R, I ran bivariate regression analysis to study any relationships between demographic variables and SNAP enrollment in addition to a correlation matrix to observe any relationships that may exist between demographic variables. The next steps are to build a model that can predict SNAP enrollment using the Akaike Information Criterion Method as well as to continue gathering data concerning Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and the interaction between regional SNAP enrollment and food pantry usage.

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