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High-Impact HINET Helps Hungry Students to Succeed

February 10, 2019, 8:15 AM HST
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To reduce the cost of education for Hawai‘i’s most vulnerable populations and help them to get good paying jobs, more than 200 University of Hawai‘i Community College students at four campuses are participating in a life-changing workforce education and training program called HINET, which stands for Hawai‘i Nutrition Employment and Training, is providing student assistance that can total more than $4,700 a year for food, transportation, books and other expenses.

Leomana Turalde, Windward CC natural sciences student. Courtesy photo.

To qualify for HINET, students must enroll at a UH community college and take at least six credits in an approved program. They must also qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly called food stamps, and HINET can help with the paperwork.

Students in the HINET program may substitute their education and employment training for the USDA 20-hour weekly work requirement. This allows them to maintain their benefits while pursuing a college education.

Deedee Crowton, Windward CC veterinary technology student. Courtesy photo.

Current and prospective community college students are encouraged to visit the HINET website or go to a HINET office on campus.

Background:

  • HINET began operations in 2015 and was developed by the State of Hawai‘i Department of Human Services in partnership with Windward Community College.
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture reimburses 50 percent of non-federal funds spent in support of HINET.
  • As more state and philanthropic dollars are invested in HINET, more USDA dollars will flow to HINET, helping to reach more students.
  • Administrators say if they could increase the current operating budget from $656,000 to $ 1.4 million, potentially 1,000 to 1,400 students could be served.
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Donations to support HINET will be matched by 50% and can be made by going online to donate via credit card or call (808) 956-8849 if you wish to make a credit card gift over the phone.

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