The University of Hawaii (UH) has taken steps to ensure student welfare on and off-campus by launching the UH Student Basic Needs website. Through this initiative, the university system aims to give students access to essential services including food, financial assistance, and transportation.
UH administrators can use the Basic Needs website to identify the necessities lacking among students. The webpage features hyperlinks that direct users to available groups, programs, and services that can help address their problems.
Faculty members are urged to inform students about the availability of this resource and add the following statement to their course syllabi:
“Student basic needs security is critical for ensuring strong academic performance, persistence and graduation and overall student well-being. If you or someone you know is experiencing basic needs insecurity, please see the UH System Basic Needs website.”
Research shows that 60 percent of US college students experience basic needs insecurity because of the pandemic. With this in mind, the UH System Basic Needs Committee is also working to create a plan to guide future planning decisions around securing basic needs.
#UHohana students have new web resource for basic needs – A new website addressing student hunger, housing, financial resources and more is now available ➡️ https://t.co/fHNUktydGB pic.twitter.com/NX9QzVGoaB
— University of Hawaii System (@UHawaiiNews) March 1, 2021
Similar initiatives have been rolled out by other organizations and academic institutions to help struggling students.
Lone Star College (LSC) in Houston has offered financial assistance to students and employees affected by the winter storm. The LSC Weather Emergency Assistance Fund will provide grants to help people with repairs, and has already provided $100,000 to students and $100,000 to staff members.
Massachusetts lawmakers have also proposed bills that would help state colleges address student food insecurity. Non-profit institutions that serve low-income students can participate if they are determined to be qualified and have been assigned a “Hunger-Free Campus.”