Survey: Students Feel Safer on UH Campuses

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University of Hawaiʻi students throughout all 10 campuses feel safer overall from sexual harassment and gender-based violence, according to the 2021 UH Student Campus Climate Survey.

The biennial survey asked students about their experience while enrolled at a UH campus. According to a press release, about 17% of 40,122 adult students completed the survey.

During the fall 2020 semester and first two months of the spring 2021 semester, 4 out of 5 students reported less in-person contact at the time of the survey as most courses were online because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Key findings of the 2021 survey include:

  • Gender-based violence and harassment prevalence has decreased since the previous survey across all categories: sexual harassment, stalking, dating and domestic violence/intimate partner violence and non-consensual sexual contact.
  • Overall perceived risk at UH for sexual assault/harassment has decreases from 3.4% in 2017 to 2.9% in 2021 and 2019.
  • Students had greater awareness of Title IX resources (82%), and 57% of students were aware of their Title IX coordinator (up from 55% in 2019).
  • More students than in the previous survey, 61%, found Title IX training extremely or very useful. That figure is an increase from 59% in 2019 and 51% in 2017.
  • Risk factors/vulnerable groups (transgender/genderqueer/questioning or non-conforming students; female/women students; students with disabilities; LGBTQ+ students) remain consistent with past UH climate surveys and nationwide trends.

The majority of student bystanders took action in two of three gender violence scenarios:

  • 76.4% of students say they intervened when they suspected a friend was sexually assaulted.
  • 53.6% say they intervened when they witnessed a drunk person heading for a sexual encounter.
  • 42% said they intervened when witnessing sexually violent or harassing behavior.

“Though these findings are very encouraging, especially the decrease in cases and greater awareness of student resources, we still have room for improvement and work to do to provide safer discrimination-free campuses,” UH President David Lassner said in the press release. “I am confident that each campus will utilize the more granular data to increase awareness of rights and resources and develop other programs to improve their campus environments.”

The 2021 survey is helping the UH system assess the effectiveness and update action plans developed by each campus following the 2017 and 2019 surveys.


For more key highlights from the survey, click here.

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