ComJour333: Story #4- Profile

I). Background on Griffin Uchida
· RED duties
· Motivation
· Hice opinion
II). Managing Issues
· Proudest moment
· Response
· Overall Experience
III). Legacy
· Kiambuthi perspective
· Lasting impact
· Close

Helping others is contagious: Griffin Uchida Profile
Griffin Uchida wakes up every morning with the mindset that he’s going to help somebody and to make a difference in the community he has come to know and love.

As the residential education director (RED) of McEachern Residence Hall at WSU, Uchida makes a career out of offering assistance and his expertise to students in a myriad of ways.

“My job is two-fold in the sense that I primarily manage people be it supervising resident advisors or dealing with residents that are having issues,” Uchida said.

“I also mange the building to make sure the hall is running effectively while properly utilizing its resources so students are getting what they pay for.”

Uchida knew he wanted to get involved in the field of education ever since he was five or six years old.

However, it wasn’t until he attended undergraduate school and became an RA at Western Washington University that he discovered his true calling and future profession.

“What interested me most was the experience and opportunity to get a more holistic view of the student and see them outside of class in their living situations,” Uchida said.

“I enjoy witnessing the growth of these young adults to a more traditional view of adulthood and prepping them to become responsible citizens.”

Sophomore Marissa Hice enjoyed her time working for Uchida and viewed him as a mentor that helped prepare her professionally.

“Griffin is one of the most phenomenal leaders I ever had the pleasure of encountering,” Hice said.

“I learned and grew so much as a person due to his guidance and he helped everyone stay enthusiastic and ready to work.”

Uchida said each passing day brings new challenges but the most trying time of his career occurred last year in which a resident of his hall accidentally set off the sprinkler system in their room.

The incident caused a great deal of personal and property damage and quite a stir among residents.

“That was one of those times that really encapsulates what I do,” Uchida said.

“The situation called for a quick response and I had to utilize a lot of different skills to connect with the various departments that were going to help solve the problem.”

Junior Kariri Kiambuthi, an RA at McEachern thinks highly of Uchida’s leadership skill and managerial abilities.

“Griffin’s communication skills, clarity on his expectations, and his ability to challenge us on multiple levels are all characteristics that make him a good hall director,” said Kiambuthi.

Uchida also works part-time in the dean of students’ office and engages himself in any odd-jobs they ask of him.

He is currently coordinating a volunteer project to aid students in moving into the residence halls in the fall and is also working on a new electronic version of the student handbook.

Uchida admits to getting embarrassed regarding any sort of public acknowledgement or praise for his achievements.

However, he said he wants to be thought of as part of the bigger picture, a legacy of educators who’ve made a difference in Pullman.

“If I am able to leave my community in better shape than it was when I got here, regardless of how well off they were functioning before I started then I will be satisfied,” Uchida said.

“I truly want to see students succeed and if I can know I had a part in that then that is definitely the kind of lasting impact I’d like to have.”

Helping others is a reward in itself as showing compassion for one’s fellow man can be a therapeutic experience but to Uchida, it means a whole lot more. it’s a career and his ever-lasting legacy.



-Griffin Uchida:
-Marissa Hice:
-Kariri Kiambuthi:


ComJour333 Story 3: Video/Audio Package


Narrator: “The Free Application for Federal Student Aid ( or FAFSA) is a form that can be prepared annually by current and prospective college students in the United States to determine their eligibility for student financial aid.

*FAFSA Form*
Narrator: “The age to officially declare independent status on a FAFSA form is 24 years old. The age restriction can be an issue for students under 24 who are already financially independent because the burdens of financial aid are instead put on their parents. This can be a problem for low-income families or parents who are separated.”

*Narration over Tracy Roberts footage*
Narrator: “Even as an older student at 26, Tracy Roberts thinks the age of independency on the form should be lowered because she feels that the government should not get to determine an individual’s status without looking even further into their background.”

Tracy Roberts: “I’m old enough where I can’t be on my parents’ insurance anymore so I have to purchase the student insurance which is a lot of money each semester. Also I live in an on-campus apartment so I have to go out and buy food on my own. It does save some money in the long run but it’s a little more inconvenient at times because you have to run to the store.”

Narrator: “Twenty-year old Nick Kruiswyk thinks students in college should be able to be considered independent no matter the age, as long as they have the means to do so.”

Nick Kruiswyk: “If you’re willing to go away to school, away from your parents at college, you’re basically wanting to claim yourself as an independent, wanting to be on your own. I think they should lower [the FAFSA age restriction] for when you go into college.”

Narrator: “19 year old Sarah Rae does not think the age to be considered independent for financial aid needs to be lowered because she is already worried about her future.”

Sarah Rae: “I mean, it makes me scared because I’m not going to have that high-paying of a job so it will take me a while to pay it off but the other money also goes to people less fortunate than me.”

*Money On Table Clip*
Narrator: “Despite two very different situations regarding FAFSA, Roberts and Kruiswyk also expressed concern regarding their finances and abilities to pay off student loans.”

Roberts: “I make a lot less money than my parents so instead of a ton of loans and maybe no grants at all, I get almost about half grants and work study for my financial aid instead of all loans.”

Kruiswyk: “Its in the back of my mind because I know I don’t need to worry about it yet but is the ever-growing thing of when I’m done with school I’ll have to start paying off loans and just how I’m going to go about doing that once I’m done with college.”

*Murrow Building Clip*
Narrator: “I’m Zack Menchel for Reporting Across Platforms News.”

Sources (In order of appearance):

Tracy Roberts
WSU Student

Nick Kruiswyk
WSU Student
Phone: (509) 435-2230

Sarah Rae
WSU Student

B-Roll Footage: