UH Shines in 2018 U.S. News and World Report Rankings

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa, UH West Oʻahu and UH Hilo once again made the U.S. News and World Report’s Best Colleges Rankings, along with UH Mānoa Shidler College of Business. The 2018 U.S. News and World Report rankings were released on September 12.

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa moved up 10 spots to 159 on the 2018 U.S. News and World Report’s Best Colleges Rankings. UH Manoa is also ranked 6 in Best Ethnic Diversity (National Universities), 83 in Top Public Schools, and 177 in High School Counselor Rankings.

“We continue to be gratified by the upward movement in recent academic and research rankings, both on national and international levels,” said Michael Bruno, UH Mānoa interim vice chancellor for academic affairs and vice chancellor for research. “They show that our faculty and staff are working hard, and working together, to give students the best and most accessible higher education experience.”

The announcement of UH Mānoa’s upward mobility on the U.S. News and World Report ranking follows the 2018 Times Higher Education World University Rankings that rated UH Mānoa 63 in the U.S., up from 69 last year—representing its best showing ever in the Times ranking.

UH West Oʻahu ranked 25 among Best Regional Colleges (West), placing it in the top 38 percent of schools in their respective category.

“The faculty, staff and students are thrilled to be recognized as it is an affirmation of the great work we do to prepare 21st Century leaders—career creators who are making a positive difference in our communities!” said UH West Oʻahu Maenette K. P. Ah Nee-Benham.

UH Hilo ranked 66 among Best Regional Universities West, placing it in the top 47 percent in their respective categorory.

“We are very pleased to see UH Hilo recognized for its excellence in providing a quality educational experience,” said UH Hilo Interim Chancellor Marcia Sakai. “This ranking is a testament to the work of our faculty and staff, who are deeply committed to providing our students with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed when they graduate and enter their chosen professions.”

The U.S. News and World Report rankings surveyed 1,600 colleges among more than 3,000 four-year institutions throughout the U.S. Its methodology considers, among various factors, endowment size, rate of alumni giving and student-to-faculty ratio, which tend to favor private institutions.

U.S. News and World Report profiles:
UH Mānoa
UH West Oʻahu
UH Hilo

Finalists Announced for Dean of the College of Education at UH Mānoa

Three finalists have been identified for the position of Dean of the College of Education (COE).  The three finalists are scheduled to participate over a two day period of visits on the Mānoa campus.  The visits include department discussions; meetings with senior administrators, faculty, staff, students, and internal and external constituents; and a public presentation.

Campus and community members, as well as the general public, are encouraged to attend.

The campus visits of the three candidates have been scheduled as follows:

Dr. Michael Sampson

Dr. Michael Sampson, visiting September 21-22, 2017
Dean and Professor
School of Education
St. John’s University
Public Presentation:  Friday, September 22, 3:00-4:15 p.m./Art Building Auditorium 132

Dr. Nathan Murata

Dr. Nathan Murata, visiting September 28-29, 2017
Professor and Department and Graduate Chair
Department of Kinesiology
College of Education
University of Hawaii at Manoa
Public Presentation:  Friday, September 29, 3:00-4:15 p.m./Art Building Auditorium 132

Dr. DeLacy Ganley

Dr. DeLacy Ganley, visiting October 2-3, 2017
Professor and Director
Department of Teacher Education, School of Educational Studies
Claremont Graduate University
Public Presentation:  Tuesday, October 3, 3:00-4:15 p.m./Bilger Building Auditorium 150

“We were fortunate to have received a highly qualified pool of candidates.  The Search Advisory Committee did a terrific job in identifying these three finalists and I would like to thank them for their outstanding effort and commitment to the search,” said Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Vice Chancellor for Research Michael Bruno.  “As always, we encourage UH faculty, staff, students and the public to come out and meet the candidates, and we look forward to receiving their input to assist in hiring the best person for the position.”

For more information about the search process, including a list of the members of the search advisory committee, the campus visit daily schedule and the candidate biographies, see the search website at http://www.manoa.hawaii.edu/executivesearch/educ.

For more information about the College of Education, please visit https://coe.hawaii.edu/.

UH Mānoa Moves Up in Prestigious Ranking

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa has received more global recognition of its academic and research excellence in an international ranking released on September 5.

The 2018 Times Higher Education World University Rankings rated UH Mānoa number 63 in the nation, up from 69 last year—representing its best showing ever in the Times ranking. According to the U.S. Department of Education, there are more than 3,000 four-year universities in the nation.

“This upward movement on the Times ranking is a bright note recognizing the hard work and continued dedication of our faculty, who teach students and lead research efforts that make an impact on a global level,” said Michael Bruno, UH Mānoa interim vice chancellor for academic affairs and vice chancellor for research.

The Times rankings are the only global university league tables to judge research-intensive universities across all of their core missions—teaching, research, knowledge transfer and international outlook.

UH Mānoa also ranks among the top 100 U.S. universities in other international rankings, including number 71 in the Academic Ranking of World Universities, based at Shanghai Jiao Tong University in China, and number 69 in the United Kingdom-based QS World University Ranking.

For more information on rankings, see the Mānoa Institutional Research Office website.

UH Hilo Student Participates in International Human Rights Summit

A University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo senior from Timor-Leste (formerly East Timor) represented her country as a youth delegate at the 14th Annual International Human Rights Summit, held recently at United Nations (UN) Headquarters in New York City.

Josefina Pereira (right) seated with fellow delegates at the UN Trusteeship Council Chamber Room.

Josefina Pereira, who is majoring in administration of justice and political science, was one of 52 delegates selected for the summit, which teaches youth about human rights, specifically the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and inspires them to become advocates for tolerance and peace.

“It was an honor to represent Timor- Leste and UH Hilo as a delegate, and to learn more about important human rights issues from true human rights champions and activists from around the world,” Pereira said.

Pereira is a recipient of a United States Timor-Leste Scholarship funded by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs administered by the East-West Center. Her attendance at the summit was sponsored through a merit-based scholarship from Youth for Human Rights International (YHRI) and with financial assistance from the UH Hilo Office of International Student Services program.

“We were thrilled to have Josefina represent her country and UH Hilo at this important event,” said Jim Mellon, director of International Student Services at UH Hilo. “It is a testament to her dedication to human rights and to UH Hilo’s engagement with the global community.”

The summit brought together officials and advocates who work for equality and justice through human rights education, including ambassadors and other representatives of permanent missions to the UN. During the session, keynote speakers, youth delegates and ambassadors and observers from more than 45 countries were invited to share their thoughts and feelings on human rights issues in their home countries. Pereira addressed children’s rights in her homeland, with a focus on mitigating and eventually ending child abuse.

“This is an issue of great concern to me,” Pereira said. “I appreciate the opportunity the summit provided me to share my thoughts on this topic with an international audience.”

Participants also attended panel presentations on key human rights issues, including human trafficking, that featured leaders of the international effort to prevent human trafficking and a survivor who shared her own personal story. They later heard from noted human rights activists, including author and social entrepreneur Bryant McGill, Reach the World Director of Partnerships Christopher Ahearn, and radio and TV host Kerri Kassem. Pereira said she was deeply inspired by her experience and hopes to return.

“I feel I gained a lot from my experience, but have more to learn. So I would like to return next year as a youth ambassador,” Pereira said. “2018 will also be a very special year as the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights celebrates its 70th anniversary and YHRI marks its 15th anniversary. ”

UH Manoa Volcanologists Receive International Recognition

Two volcanologists from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa’s Department of Geology and Geophysics have received two of the top three awards from the International Association of Volcanology and Chemistry of the Earth’s Interior (IAVCEI). Bruce Houghton, the Gordon A. MacDonald Professor of Volcanology and Science Director of the National Disaster Preparedness Training Center at UHM, was honored recently with the IAVCEI Thorarinsson Medal. Sébastien Biass, a post-doctoral researcher at the UHM School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology Department of Geology and Geophysics, was honored with the George Walker Medal.

Houghton’s Thorarinsson Medal

The Thorarinsson Medal is awarded only once every four years by the IAVCEI for outstanding contributions to volcanology, and is the highest award in international volcanology.

“A giant of volcanology, Bruce has tackled ‘big’ problems in geology with innovative approaches and technologies, and is truly a scientist of outstanding distinction,” stated University of Tasmania’s Rebecca Carey in her nomination letter. “His research has not only generated a wealth of new scientific understanding, but also critically Thorarinsson-type pioneering advances in long-standing cornerstone volcanologic concepts.”

Bruce Houghton Near Ruapehu, New Zealand

Further, Houghton has pioneered research across the interface of fundamental volcanological science and hazards, social and behavioral science, leading to a world-first detailed training course for scientists, first responders and emergency managers, titled the U.S. FEMA Volcanic Crisis Awareness course.

Houghton and his predecessor at UHM, George Walker, are among the only 9 volcanologists to date given the Thorarinsson award, which is named for noted Icelandic geologist and volcanologist Sigurdur Thorarinsson.

Houghton reflected on becoming a Thorarinsson Medalist: “I was delighted and surprised by the award. All my research is collaborative and, since moving to UH, 70% of my papers have been first-authored by my students or postdocs, and these are not the type of statistics that usually lead to such awards. I was particularly pleased because all three of my mentors in volcanology are on the list of eight prior winners of the medal; it is quite humbling to be joining them. For UH to have been awarded two of the nine Thorarinsson Medal to date is, I think, a sign that volcanology is in excellent health here in Hawaiʻi. The challenge now is to find ways to build on this reputation and capture for UH some of the wonderful crop of young volcanologists on the market.”

Biass’s George Walker Award 

The George Walker Award is given every two years to a young scientist up to seven years after acquiring a doctoral degree. The award recognizes achievements of a recent outstanding graduate in the fields of research encompassed by IAVCEI.

Sebastien Biass

Sébastien Biass, post-doctoral researcher working with Houghton at UHM, was honored for “achievements that are all deeply rooted in field studies and because of his unique appreciation with the importance of statistical and critical treatment of field data within the growing field of numerical modelling,” cited Professor Costanza Bonadonna of the University of Geneva. “His unique approach stems from combining thorough field studies with state-of-the-art numerical modeling, furthering both deposit characterization and the newly born discipline of hazard and risk assessment that he is pioneering. What makes Sébastien unique in his science is his open mind and multidisciplinary approach, his scientific curiosity and enthusiasm, and his dedication to going beyond his own limits.”

Sebastien Biass in the Field

Biass commented, “My vision of the IAVCEI George Walker Award for early career scientist is closely tied to my vision of scientific research, which contains three components. First, scientific curiosity is one of the greatest source of pleasure in life and provides the motivation to attempt understanding the unknown. Second, luck, that is in the selection of work colleagues, has been an integral part of my research. Specifically, Costanza Bonadonna and Bruce Houghton, both part of the UH family in either past or present, have shown me how working on interesting science with bright people is an invaluable source of satisfaction. Thirdly, I see research as having a global objective of the well-being of society, which in volcanology translates to a better understanding of the physics of hazardous processes occurring during eruptions in order to mitigate better the impacts on exposed communities. This award therefore represents a success on these three levels and belongs as much to everyone I have ever looked up to as it does to me. Having been picked amongst a long list of such successful young scientists humbles me and gives great motivation to pursue my scientific career.”

The award honors the memory of former UHM Geology Professor George Walker, whose discoveries pioneered a modern quantitative approach to physical volcanology and greatly accelerated understanding of volcanic processes.

For more information, visit: https://www.soest.hawaii.edu

UH Hilo Offering American Sign Language Classes

The College of Continuing Education and Community Service (CCECS) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo offers non-credit American Sign Language (ASL) classes open to anyone age 15 and older.American Sign Language Level 1A will introduce the basics of ASL, including grammar and vocabulary for simple social conversation. Participants will also learn about deaf culture and rules of social interaction. Instructor Vicki Linter has been an ASL interpreter for 25 years and has taught ASL in California and Hawaiʻi. Classes will be held in UH Hilo’s Kanaka`ole Hall Room 106 on Wednesdays from 5 – 6:30 p.m., September 20 – November 22. The cost is $150.

American Sign Language Level 1B is for anyone who has some experience with ASL. Participants will focus on advancing expressive and receptive conversational skills. The course will be taught by Pam Bond, a deaf instructor and native in ASL with 12 years of teaching experience at Brigham Young University and at the high school level in Utah. Classes will be held in UH Hilo’s Kanaka`ole Hall Room 106 on Thursdays from 5 – 6:30 p.m., September 14 – November 16. The cost is $150.

Both classes require the Signing Naturally Student Workbook, Level 1, Units 1-6.

For more information and to register, call CCECS at 932-7830 or visit http://hilo.hawaii.edu/ccecs/.

Hawai’i CC Nursing Instructor Receives National Recognition for Work in Psychiatric Nursing

Hawai’i Community College Nursing instructor Cheryl Puntil is the 2017 recipient of the Award for Distinguished Service from the American Psychiatric Nurses Association (APNA).

Cheryl Puntil

Puntil will be recognized for her commitment, initiative, loyalty, integrity and exceptional and meritorious service at the 31st Annual National APNA Conference in Phoenix, Arizona on October 18. With more than 10,000 members, APNA is the largest professional membership organization committed to the specialty practice of psychiatric mental health (PMH) nursing and wellness promotion, prevention of mental health problems, and the care and treatment of persons with psychiatric disorders.

Puntil and several APNA colleagues worked on the APNA Essential Suicide Competencies for nurse assessment and management of individuals at risk for suicide.

“Through [Cheryl’s] vision, determination, and perseverance, the APNA Suicide Competencies initiative became a reality and an exemplar, continues to expand, and addresses both a major national public health problem and gap in nursing education,” Puntil’s colleagues stated.

“It is an incredible honor to receive the American Psychiatric Nurses Association Award for Distinguished Service,” said Puntil. “I followed my passion and was lucky to find awesome mentors who paved the way for me to assist in establishing competencies that will change nursing practice and improve care for those at risk for suicide. I was very surprised and grateful for the acknowledgment from my esteemed colleagues who nominated me, and to the APNA board for voting on my behalf to receive the award.”

Puntil received her Bachelor’s of Science in Nursing from the College of Saint Teresa and her Master’s of Science in Nursing from the University of California, Los Angeles. She is certified as an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) and a Psychiatric Mental Health Clinical Nurse Specialist (PMHCNS-BC).

Puntil joined Hawai’i CC Division of Nursing and Allied Health in 2014. Hawai’i CC offers Associate of Science Degree in Nursing and a Certificate of Achievement in Practical Nursing.

Suicide Prevention at Hawai’i CC

With suicide the second leading cause of death for persons 15-34, Hawai’i Community College has taken an active approach to suicide prevention. The college has established a Mental Wellness and Personal Development Service that offers services to students and leads trainings for faculty, staff and students in Safe Talk and QPR. Puntil has also brought Safe Talk training to Hawai’i CC Nursing students.

Puntil and Hawai’i CC Mental Health Therapist Kate De Soto were invited by UH Hilo Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Farrah-Marie Gomes to serve on the UH Suicide Prevention Committee.

The college will participate in National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month in September with tabling events, sign making and sign waving on September 12 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The goal is to bring awareness to the issue of suicidality and and enhance prevention efforts, said De Soto.

“We want to reduce the stigma of depression and suicidal thoughts so people have fewer barries to seeking help,” De Soto said. “The more we show support as a community, the more people are likely to speak up and the more people are likely to know what to do if someone does speak up.”

Students seeking services from the Mental Wellness and Personal Development office can contact De Soto at 934-2706 and kdesoto@hawaii.edu.

Governor Appoints Hawai‘i Island Executive to UH Board of Regents

Gov. David Ige has nominated corporate executive and consultant Douglas Shinsato to the University of Hawai‘i Board of Regents, representing Hawai‘i County (East).

Douglas Shinsato

Shinsato is co-founder of Anthill Ventures, a cross-border incubator and advisor to technology start-ups in India, Southeast Asia, Europe and the United States. Anthill focuses on tele-education, tele-health, sustainable food production, and cyber-security. Shinsato and his global partners focus on innovative digital technologies that aim to improve people’s lives.

Shinsato is also a member of the Board of Directors of Creative Intelligence Associates, one of Japan’s top branding strategy firms. The consulting firm advises clients on how to leverage or transform their branding and messaging strategies to increase customer satisfaction, revenues and profits.

Previously, Shinsato served as president for leading technology companies such as PTC Japan and as vice president-Asia Pacific for Autodesk. He was also senior partner at Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu.

“I am honored to be appointed to the Board of Regents. I look forward to working with my fellow Regents on behalf of the UH and its extended community,” said Shinsato.

Shinsato has a B.A. and MBA from the University of Southern California and a Juris Doctor degree from the Stanford Law School.

He is married to Jennifer Lindsay-Shinsato. They have two adult children and one grandchild.

If confirmed by the state Senate, Shinsato will complete the term of the late Barry Mizuno. The term expires on June 30, 2018.

Governor’s Statement on UH Board of Regents Resolution on Stewardship of Mauna Kea:

I am pleased that the University of Hawai‘i has affirmed its intention to take action to strengthen the collaborative stewardship of Mauna Kea and its resources. I look forward to working with the university and its partners to make meaningful changes that further contribute to the co-existence of culture and science on this special mountain. —Governor David Y. Ige

PISCES and Hawaii CC Launch Credit-Based Internship Program

The Pacific International Space Center for Exploration Systems (PISCES) — a state-funded aerospace agency — in partnership with Hawaii Community College has launched a new credit-based internship program to offer college students high-tech learning opportunities while earning classroom credit.
The collaborative program will provide hands-on experience in computer programming and robotics work to develop Hawaii’s skilled labor workforce as jobs increasingly shift toward high-tech industry positions.

“I am very happy to be working closely with Hawaii Community College to provide students the opportunity to practice and improve the skills they learn in the classroom,” said PISCES Program Manager Rodrigo Romo. “At PISCES we are committed to providing Hawaii’s youth with as many tools and opportunities as possible to meet the demands of the growing high tech industry in the Islands.”

“Hawaii Community College believes that preparing our students for the jobs of the 21st century goes beyond our classrooms,” said Hawaii CC Chancellor Rachel Solemsaas. “Along with industry partners like PISCES, we can provide academic rigor in internship-based courses and programs.”

Two Hawaii CC students will participate in the new program during the fall 2017 semester, earning hour-for-hour classroom credit towards their degrees. Andrew Hasegawa and Jack Andersen, both Electronics Technology majors, will design and develop an autonomous navigation system for the PISCES planetary rover, “Helelani,” enabling the 700-pound robot to drive itself. The students will also develop a delivery system for an unmanned aerial vehicle to mitigate little fire ant populations in tree canopies — a PISCES project in partnership with the Hawaii Ant Lab. Both students are already familiar with the Helelani rover’s configuration since developing the robot’s software and hardware systems during PISCES’ 10-week internship program this summer.

“Hawaii Community College is very proud of our two summer intern students, Andrew Hasegawa and Jack Anderson, who will also participate this fall in the credit-based internship program at PISCES,” said Hawaii CC Electronics Technology Instructor Bernard “Chip” Michels. “Their work this past summer is a good representation of the new Electronics Technology curriculum the students were exposed to. I believe this new, revitalized Electronics Technology program that is focused on telecommunications and process and control industries will yield other fine examples of student work in the future. We hope to have more opportunities for our interns at PISCES and other interested organizations.”

PISCES and Hawaii CC intend to make the credit-based internship an ongoing program to provide unique learning opportunities for Hawaii college students outside of the classroom.

“Although classroom learning is invaluable for foundational knowledge, it can at times be lacking in more realistic problem-solving scenarios,” said Hawaii CC student Andrew Hasegawa. “This internship provides me with hands-on situations that I’m sure will serve me well in my overall education and future employment opportunities.”

Andersen and Hasegawa demonstrated the effectiveness of their summer internship experience during a final presentation in Hilo on Aug. 18 to an audience of lawmakers, educators, industry representatives and other members of the community.

“I am amazed with students’ testimony about their place-based learning experiences and their enthusiasm in applying their skills to the real world,” said Solemsaas.

Senator Kahele to Kick-Off Statewide Higher Education Tour at UH Hilo Next Wednesday

State Senator Kaiali‘i Kahele, Chair of the Senate Committee on Higher Education, is announcing a statewide higher education tour for its committee members. The tour will also include discussions with students, faculty, staff and administrators, that will focus on “transforming the University of Hawai‘i System for the next decade.” Arrangements are being made to visit all 10 University of Hawai‘i System campuses and affiliated education centers this fall as follows:

  • University of Hawai‘i at Hilo 
  • University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa 
  • University of Hawai‘i at West Oahu 
  • University of Hawai‘i Maui College 
  • Hawai‘i Community College (Hilo) 
  • Honolulu Community College 
  • Kapi‘olani Community College 
  • Leeward Community College 
  • Windward Community College 
  • Kaua‘i Community College 
  • Hawai‘i Community College – Pālamanui (Kona) 
  • North Hawai‘i Education and Research Center (Honoka‘a) 
  • Hawai‘i Institute of Marine Biology (Kaneohe)

To kick off the statewide tour, Senator Kahele is hosting an East Hawai‘i Higher Education Town Hall on Wednesday, August 30, 2017 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at UH Hilo in UCB100. Topics of discussion will include leadership, enrollment, tuition, governance, student life, facilities, athletics, community engagement and new programs. University of Hawai‘i at Hilo and Hawai‘i Community College students, faculty, staff, administrators and the community are encouraged to attend.

For questions regarding the higher education statewide tour or the town hall meeting, please contact the office of Sen. Kahele at 808-586-6760 or senkkahele@capitol.hawaii.gov.

Resolution Affirming Collaborative Stewardship of Maunakea Considered by Board of Regents

The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents is considering a resolution at the August 24 meeting that affirms UH‘s commitment to the collaborative stewardship of Maunakea’s cultural, natural, educational and scientific resources. The proposed resolution also directs the university to move forward to build a global model of harmonious and inspirational stewardship that integrates traditional indigenous knowledge and modern science.

The proposed resolution commits the university to work with the state, County of Hawaiʻi, Native Hawaiian organizations and the community to achieve this aim, and also directs the university to increase the engagement of Native Hawaiian students, Hawaiʻi Island residents, and residents of the State of Hawaiʻi in the areas of astronomy, celestial navigation and exploration through an active educational and outreach program that highlights indigenous knowledge as well as enhanced student access to and utilization of Maunakea-based astronomical resources.

The resolution will also affirm the university’s commitment to return approximately 10,000 acres of land not utilized for astronomy to the jurisdiction of the state and the pursuit of a new lease or land tenure to secure the continued viability of astronomy in Hawaiʻi.

Resolution Affirming Commitment to the Collaborative Stewardship of Maunakea’s Cultural, Natural, Educational and Scientific Resources

WHEREAS, the Board of Regents believes that Maunakea can and should be a global model that provides inspiration, harmony and peaceful co-existence among culture, education, the environment and scientific discovery; and

WHEREAS, the Board of Regents for the University of Hawaiʻi embraced the university’s commitment to its responsibilities to Maunakea beginning with the adoption of the Maunakea Science Reserve Master Plan in 2000, the Maunakea Comprehensive Master Plan, Cultural Resources Management and Natural Resources Management Plans in 2009, and the Public Access and Decommissioning Plans in 2010; and

WHEREAS, the board and the university administration also aspire for the university to become a model indigenous-serving university and have committed to principles of sustainability across its mission; and

WHEREAS, the board now hereby affirms the commitment of the university to fulfill its obligations under the plans that have been approved, as well as its broader commitment to the community at large; and

WHEREAS, the board wishes to additionally acknowledge the dedicated work and commitment of the Office of Maunakea Management, the Maunakea Management Board, and the Native Hawaiian Kahu Kū Mauna Council, on behalf of the University of Hawaiʻi and the Board of Regents; and

WHEREAS, subsequent to the adoption of the various plans, and with the understanding that collaborative stewardship will continue to be prioritized on all Maunakea lands, the university has now agreed to return approximately 10,000 acres of land on Maunakea that it currently leases that is not used for astronomy, to the State of Hawaiʻi; and

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the university take the steps that are necessary to expedite the return of the 10,000 acres to the State of Hawaiʻi in a timely manner and pursue a new lease or land tenure for the reduced acreage that will support the continued viability of astronomical research and education in the State; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the university work with the State, County of Hawaiʻi, Native Hawaiian organizations, and the broader community to evolve collaborative and coherent management and stewardship plans that are consistent with the Comprehensive Management Plan, and that are supported by appropriate administrative rules; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the university make it a priority, including through additional financial support, to meaningfully increase the engagement of Native Hawaiian students, Hawaiʻi Island residents, and residents of the State of Hawaiʻi in the areas of astronomy, celestial navigation and exploration; and that such initiatives include an active educational and outreach program that highlights indigenous knowledge as well as enhanced student access to and utilization of Maunakea-based astronomical resources in the field; and

The Board of Regents, through this Resolution, hereby affirms its commitment to the collaborative stewardship of Maunakea’s cultural, natural, educational and scientific resources, and directs the university to move forward to collaboratively build a global model of harmonious and inspirational stewardship that is befitting of Maunakea.

THE HAWAII PROMISE – Nearly 1,000 Students Awarded Hawai’i Promise Scholarships

Almost 1,000 students from the University of Hawaiʻi’s seven community colleges have been awarded Hawaiʻi Promise scholarships for the 2017 fall semester. This represents about 4 percent of the 23,000 students currently enrolled at UH Community Colleges.

Windward Community College

The scholarships are designed to remove all cost barriers to attending UH Community Colleges, which have already been recognized among the most affordable two-year public institutions in the nation. An estimated $1.4 million in Hawaiʻi Promise scholarships has been awarded, and the average scholarship per student is $1,416.

Hawaiʻi Promise provides aid for any financial needs not met by other forms of financial aid, such as federal grants and benefits and scholarships from UH or other sources. Its goal is to provide free in-state tuition for qualified UH Community College students and covers tuition, fees, books, supplies and transportation.

The governor and the legislature recognized the importance of this program and the need for those last dollars to make it possible for qualified students to go to college.
—John Morton

UH Vice President John Morton credits Gov. David Ige and the state legislature, which appropriated $1.8 million during the 2017 session for each year of the fiscal biennium 2018 and 2019 through the state budget bill.

“The governor and the legislature recognized the importance of this program and the need for those last dollars to make it possible for qualified students to go to college,” said Morton. “We thank them for their support and their vision.”

“Programs such as Hawaiʻi Promise remove cost barriers for anyone who wants to attend college, clearing the path for community college students to complete their education,” Ige said. “Higher education is the key to higher paying jobs and a better quality of life.”

Morton also noted that the UH Board of Regents first supported and approved the proposal for the Hawaiʻi Promise scholarship program in 2016. It was part of Gov. Ige’s executive package, and both houses introduced Hawaiʻi Promise bills in 2017.

How Hawaiʻi Promise works

There are a number of steps for students to qualify for a Hawaiʻi Promise scholarship. First, a student must apply for federal financial aid, by filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). The federal government calculates the Expected Family Contribution, or what the student’s family can afford to pay. Twenty-five per cent of the expected family contribution is applied to direct costs of attending college—tuition, fees, books supplies and local transportation. The balance of the family contribution is applied to room board and personal expenses.

If eligible, a student may then be awarded Pell grant and Supplemental Education Opportunity grant money. A student may also be awarded various UH and UH Foundation scholarships and/or scholarships from other sources.

If all these grants and award reviews are completed and the student still has unmet need for direct costs, such as tuition, fees and books, the student receives a Hawaiʻi Promise scholarship to cover any unmet direct costs.

National recognition

Hawaiʻi Promise has already caught the eye of the College Promise Campaign, a nonpartisan, nonprofit higher-education initiative to build widespread support for funding the first two years of a community college education. The campaign is chaired by Jill Biden and former Wyoming Gov. Jim Geringer.

“The College Promise Campaign is delighted that Hawaiʻi has joined the rapidly growing list of states and communities expanding opportunity for students to complete an undergraduate degree or technical certificate without bearing the burden of unmanageable college debt,” said Martha Kanter, executive director of the College Promise Campaign. “The Hawaiʻi Promise extends educational opportunity to students of any age, including many who never imagined they could afford to go to college.”

Spring semester 2018

UH Community Colleges are encouraging even more students to enroll and apply for the Hawaiʻi Promise scholarships for the spring semester.

“Even though we are already among the most affordable two-year public higher education institutions in the nation, we want to make sure we meet the needs of every Hawaiʻi citizen who has a desire to better their life through higher education,” said Morton.

To apply for a Hawaiʻi Promise scholarship, contact the UH System Financial Office at (808) 956-8753 or uhsfao@hawaii.edu.

College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management Dean’s List, Spring 2017

The following students in the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo received Dean’s List recognition for the spring 2017 semester:

Bishop Akao, Tiera Arakawa, Joshua Arizumi, Joshua Boranian, Edward Bufil, Pomaika`i Cathcart, Vincent Chang, Gema Cobian Gutierrez, Lexi Dalmacio, Alexandra Doi, Jesse Felts, Brandon Field, Kawaikapuokalani Genovia, Christian Grostick, Clarissa Guerrero, Johnny Jaime, Erin Kurdelmeyer, Jaylin Millan, Kassie-Lynn Miyataki, Kari Olson, Eissas Ouk, Nathan Pallett, Michael Pamatat, Maria Parker, Wesley Piena, Faamanu Puaina, Jacque Raymond, Connor Rhyno, Kaitlyn Rieber, Romance Romero, Salvatore Satullo, Kuupomaikai Stevens, Mark Tanouye, Emma Tiffan, and Jodie Van Cleave.

University of Hawaii Partnership Aims to Improve Tornado Forecasting, Warning Lead-Times

The Jonathan Merage Foundation and the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) have expanded their partnership with a new project aiming to improve severe weather forecasting and warning lead-times associated with Front Range thunderstorms over northeastern Colorado.

Colorado storm. Credit: Steven Businger.

Improvements in Colorado’s thunderstorm forecasting rely on innovative data from its Lightning Mapping Array (LMA) network. The network is comprised of 12 stations north of Denver that monitor lightning activity. LMA sensors have revealed distinct tornado signatures 30 minutes prior to the formation of a tornado and are used to predict severe storms that also produce strong straight-line winds and large hail.

The southernmost LMA sensor is currently located 25 miles north of Denver. The new gift will enable the construction and installation of six additional sensor stations around and south of Denver, expanding the LMA network to cover the Denver Metro Area and improve severe weather forecasting for the most densely-populated area of Colorado.

Steven Businger and Jonathan Merage. Credit: Jana Light.

“Not only will this project allow us to provide better information to the Colorado community about incoming and potential severe thunderstorms,” said Professor Steven Businger, chair of the Atmospheric Science Department in SOEST and project lead, “but it will allow scientists to study and refine relationships between lightning information and the tornadic potential of thunderstorms. It will allow us to better predict dangerous storms and improve lead-times for tornado warnings, which has the potential to save lives.”

Two new sensors will be installed this year and four additional sensors will be installed over the next two years.

In addition to the new LMA collaboration, the Jonathan Merage Foundation has funded another year of investigation into long-range lightning data. The project is funding a postdoctoral student in Businger’s lab.

“Last year we developed a tropical storm model that can assimilate lightning data,” said Businger. “This year we aim to improve the way cloud processes are handled in the model and run some case studies, such as Hurricane Patricia and Typhoon Haiyan, through the model. This year will get us closer to our goal of improving our ability to predict the track and intensity of tropical cyclones.”

Both projects are currently under way.

UH Community College Students Prepare to Launch Payload From NASA Flight Facility

University of Hawaiʻi community college students are getting ready to launch their third payload from a NASA facility. The launch from Wallops Flight Facility in Virginia is scheduled for a window between 5:30 and 9:30 a.m. EDT on Saturday, August 12.

Nicholas Hermann and Cale Melcher

Live coverage of the mission is scheduled to begin at 5 a.m. EDT on the Wallops Ustream site. Launch updates also are available via the Wallops Facebook and Twitter sites. Facebook Live coverage begins at 5:15 a.m. EDT.

Smartphone users can download the What’s Up at Wallops app, which contains information on the launch as well as a compass showing the precise direction for launch viewing.

Project Imua is a joint faculty-student enterprise of four UH community college campuses (Honolulu, Kapiʻolani, Kauaʻi and Windward). Its primary mission is to engage undergraduate students in project based STEM research with real-world development of small payloads for space flight. A NASA grant awarded to the Hawaiʻi Space Grant Consortium has helped to fund the project.

Honolulu CC Project Imua Mentor Will Smith and students Cale Mechler and Nick Hermann are at Wallops in final preparations for Saturday’s launch. Another mentor and other UH community college students traveled to Wallops this past June to conduct preliminary tests on the payload.

For more on the August 12 launch and the participating universities and colleges, see the NASA website.

Construction of New Clinical Building at UH Law School is Progressing on Time, on Budget

Supporters, donors, faculty and staff of the UH Law School had a first close-up look this week at the new Clinical Building, which is rising in part of the parking lot next to the William S. Richardson School of Law.

A view of the front of the Clinical Building on the UH Manoa campus.

Reception guests were able to scrutinize the outside of the precast structure that is well over half complete. It is scheduled to be done on time and on budget, and will be ready for use in Spring 2018.

The reception also honored Professor Melody Mackenzie ’76, who will serve as acting dean for the next four months while Dean Avi Soifer is on Professional Growth and Development leave at the New York University School of Law. He returns December 1.

As the crowd toasted the new building and acting dean, UH President David Lassner shared words of praise, calling Richardson “a great law school” that is not only responsive to the community but trains students who go on to have positive impacts far beyond Hawai‘i. “The new Clinical Building will amplify that,” Lassner said.

Acting Dean MacKenzie told the crowd that the law school is a source of inspiration as a multi-cultural community whose primary mission is to advance justice. “Without CJ’s vision, many of us would not have had the opportunity to study law,” said MacKenzie, who was a member of the first graduating class, and who served as a law clerk for Chief Justice Richardson, the school’s namesake.

Acting Dean Melody Mackenzie and Dean Avi Soifer

The late CJ Richardson inspired the 1970s movement to build a law school committed to providing opportunities for Hawai‘i’s people.

Construction of the new Clinical Building was funded by $7.2 million in bond appropriations by the Legislature, partially backed by the school’s own funds. Recent additional philanthropy has contributed over $2 million and will pay for furniture and an advanced flexible wall system — not included in construction costs — as well as state-of-the-art IT equipment and landscaping. Additional fundraising is under way, including the goal of $5 million from a single donor for the opportunity to name the entire Clinical Building.

For more information, visit: https://www.law.hawaii.edu/

Unseen Archival Footage from Eddie Kamae Films to Debut

Historic and previously unseen footage shot by the late musician and filmmaker Eddie Kamae for his “Listen to the Forest” documentary will be available to the public online through the efforts of ʻUluʻulu: The Henry Kuʻuloha Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawaiʻi to preserve, digitize, and catalog archival footage from the making of 10 award-winning documentaries by Kamaʻe and his wife, producer Myrna Kamae.

Eddie Kamae interviewing Kupuna Loea Malia Craver

The work is debuting online to commemorate what would have been Kamae’s 90th birthday on Aug. 4, and to celebrate the completion of the “Listen to the Forest” digitization effort. Kamae, recipient of a 2007 National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship, was a noted musician who began producing films to document and preserve authentic Hawaiian culture. When he passed away in January 2017 the Los Angeles Times remarked Kamae was “one of the most influential Hawaiian musicians in the last half-century and a filmmaker who painstakingly documented the culture and history of the islands.”

The complete descriptive catalog of “Listen to the Forest” and short streaming video clips of newly digitized footage can be found at http://uluulu.hawaii.edu starting tomorrow.

“Listen to the Forest” was part of the Hawaiian Legacy documentary series released between 1988 to 2007. The 1991 film is about the biodiversity of Hawaiʻi’s rainforests and the unique relationship of reverence existing between Hawaiʻi’s native people and its native landscape. In total, more than 33 hours from 84 videotapes of raw footage and interviews from the making of “Listen to the Forest” have been digitized and preserved by ʻUluʻulu.

The effort is the result of a March 2016 Preservation and Access Partnership between ʻUluʻulu and the Hawaiian Legacy Foundation to make the documentaries’ archival footage available to the public after it is preserved, cataloged and digitized. The Hawaiian Legacy Foundation was created by Eddie and Myrna Kamae to help perpetuate the cultural heritage of Hawaiʻi through music, film and video, educational programs, community outreach and archival work.

Work continues on preserving and digitizing the entire Hawaiian Legacy Foundation collection of nearly 1,000 videotapes housed at ‘Ulu‘ulu. Researchers registered with ‘Ulu‘ulu may view the full-length footage of interviews, traditional chants, and original songs and dances, upon request.

For more information regarding the Hawaiian Legacy Foundation, call (808) 951-7316 or visit https://www.hawaiianlegacyfoundation.org/.

The ʻUluʻulu Henry Kuʻualoha Giugni Moving Image Archive of Hawaiʻi is Hawaiʻi’s official moving image archive located in the UH West Oʻahu Library. The mission of the ʻUluʻulu Archive is to perpetuate and share the rich moving image heritage of Hawai‘i through the preservation of film and videotape related to the history and culture of Native Hawaiians and the people of Hawai‘i. For more information call (808) 689-2740 or visit uluulu.hawaii.edu.

Video clips available on request.

Inspiring the Next Generation of Engineers Through Summer Academy Experience

On July 20, 83 high school students successfully completed a 6-week course at Honolulu and Hawaiʻi Community Colleges. The Summer Engineering Academy is designed to engage high school students interested in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers.

Students learned the basics of electrical engineering, mechanical engineering and computer programming, including electronics, prototyping and writing code. In addition, they were introduced to college study skills, learned about the college admissions and financial aid process, and gained advanced math and science skills.

Throughout the summer experience, students met with project engineers during a field trip to the HART Waipahu Transit Center, and heard from organizations such as the Oceanit and the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa’s College of Engineering and School of Architecture.

High school students visiting the Honolulu Authority Rapid Transportation Waipahu Transit Center.

“The summer engineering program was designed to help the students choose a career path in an engineering discipline they enjoy. With practical hands on experiences students get a first-hand taste of the type of work involved in various engineering careers,” shares Norman Takeya, assistant professor and coordinator of the Summer Engineering Academy.

New funding and program expansion

This is the fifth year Honolulu CC has offered this program that was initially funded by Hawaiʻi P–20. This year funding came from Representative Mark Nakashima’s Work Force Development Advisory Committee on STEM in partnership with the Department of Labor and Industrial Relations (DLIR). Additional funding came from the Fujio Matsuda Technology fund. This year’s funding allowed the program to be expanded to the Hawaiʻi Island where Hawaiʻi CC duplicated the program.

“We are so pleased to partner with Honolulu Community College in giving high school students a hands-on practical way to gain engineering and computer programming skills,” says DLIR Director, Linda Chu Takayama. “The problem-solving approach used in this project can be applied to any job because it fosters hard work, initiative, and teamwork, which are valued by all employers. This project also helps students define their educational and career goals, which make a smoother transition from school to work.”

Honolulu CC is committed to providing opportunities for students to learn more about STEM career fields. To learn more visit the Honolulu CC STEM website.

Nicholas Comerford to Serve as Dean of UH Manoa College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources

Nicholas Comerford will start his new role as dean of the UH Mānoa College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources and director for Research and Cooperative Extension effective September 1, 2017.

Nicholas Comerford

Comerford is currently director of North Florida Research and Education Center, University of Florida, where he also is a professor in the Soil and Water Science Department. He oversees 2,300 acres of infrastructure, along with research and extension programs of faculty representing nine campus departments. In his early career, Comerford was employed as a forest soil specialist by the State of Washington, mapping forested soils in the foothills of Mount Rainier and along the Skagit River Valley.

Comerford’s research expertise is in the area of forest soils, with an emphasis in tropical and subtropical regions. His work concentrated on soil-tree root interactions, the measurement and modeling of soil nutrient bioavailability and general aspects of forest soil management. As an active member of the Soil Science Society of America, he was elected president of the society and served in that capacity in 2010. Comerford was a past board member and chair of the related Alliance of Crop, Soil and Environmental Science Societies (ACCESS) Corporation.

Comerford earned his PhD in Silviculture and Forest Influences from the State University of New York and Syracuse University, his master’s degree in Forestry from the University of Maine, and his bachelor’s degree in Forestry from the University of Illinois.

Said UH Mānoa Interim Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Michael Bruno, “We are very excited about Dr. Comerford joining the leadership team at Mānoa. His impressive and varied accomplishments in the field, his expertise in tropical soils science, and his experience working closely with both faculty and the community via vibrant extension programs all add up to a terrific background for the new dean of CTAHR.”

For more information about the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources, see https://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/site.