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University of Hawaii launches master plan to help students struggling with basic needs

For the first time in University of Hawaii history, a master plan has been launched to assist students with obtaining basic needs, such as food, housing, clothing, childcare, mental health, financial resources and transportation, UH officials announced today.

More than half of UH students, and nearly 60% of college students nationwide, experience some type of basic needs insecurity, according to a 2020 UH student survey and recent research.

Students can’t succeed in school when they struggle this way, UH President David Lassner said in a news release. “Basic needs security for students is critical to their academic performance, persistence, graduation and overall well-being.”

The plan includes priorities for each of the UH’s 10 campuses. Among its features:

>> Basic-needs coordinator and committee chairperson, costing $120,000 per year for three years;

>> Basic-needs outreach and education events, $50,000 per year for three years;

>> An online clearinghouse of information, $25,000;

>> A survey in three years to measure progress, $100,000;

>> Emergency aid, in-kind;

>> Campus committees, in-kind.

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