About


‘A‘ohe hana nui ke alu ‘ia.
No task is too big when done together by all.

What are Basic Needs?

Basic needs include food and housing, childcare, mental health, financial resources and transportation, among others. Student basic needs security is critical for ensuring strong academic performance, persistence and graduation and overall student wellbeing.

Basic needs insecurity is experienced by millions of college students every year. In 2019, the Hope Center found that of nearly 167,000 college students surveyed in the US, 39% were food insecure within the past 30 days, 46% were housing insecure, and 17% were homeless within the past year. The prevalence of basic needs insecurity in the US and in Hawai‘i encouraged the creation of the UH System Basic Needs Committee dedicated to supporting student success and educational goals.

UH System Basic Needs Committee

The University of Hawai‘i Basic Needs Committee (UHBNC) was formed in 2019 by UH President, David Lassner to better understand and address food and other forms of basic needs insecurities in the student population. The UHBNC is dedicated to supporting students’ basic needs so that personal and educational goals are achieved. With designated committee members from each UH campus, the committee is familiar with accessible resources available specific to their campus and the surrounding community. To contact the Basic Needs Committee, please email uhsbn@hawaii.edu.

Committee Members

UH Hilo – Farrahmarie Gomes, Vice Chancellor for Students, fmgomes@hawaii.edu

UH Mānoa – Lori Ideta, Vice Provost for Student Success, ideta@hawaii.edu

UH West Oʻahu – Xochitl Mota-Back, Assistant Prof. of Sociology, Division of Social Sciences, motaback@hawaii.edu

Hawaiʻi CC – Craig Mitchell, Counseling, Advising, and Support Services Center, craigm2@hawaii.edu

Honolulu CC – Silvan Chung, Interim Dean of Academic Support, silvan@hawaii.edu

Kapi‘olani CC – LaVache Scanlan, Coordinator First Year Experience, lavache@hawaii.edu

Kaua‘i CC – Berna Souza, HiNet Coordinator – Instructional & Student Support, bwilson1@hawaii.edu

Leeward CC – Lexer Chou, Student Life Coordinator, achou@hawaii.edu

Maui College – Ben Guerrero, Director of Student Success Center, bg@hawaii.edu

Windward CC – Ka‘ahu Alo, Student Life Counselor, kaahualo@hawaii.edu

UH Community Colleges – Cathy Bio, Director of Student Success, cbio@hawaii.edu

UH System – Hae Okimoto, Associate Vice President for Student Affairs, hae@hawaii.edu

UH SystemAlbie Miles, UHBNC Chair, UHWO Assistant Professor of Sustainable Community Food Systems, albie@hawaii.edu

UH System – Rainbow Uli‘i, Student Basic Needs Coordinator, ru3@hawaii.edu

Resources for Administrators

UH Basic Needs Course Syllabi Statement

Faculty are encouraged to include the basic needs syllabi statement into their class syllabus:

“Basic needs include food and housing, childcare, mental health, financial resources and transportation, among others. 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 are experiencing basic needs insecurity, please see the following resources:UH System Basic Needs.