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Everette Ganir

Student: Everette Ganir High School: Pahoa UH Hilo Major: Computer Science, Dorrance Scholar I attended Pahoa schools from kindergarten until the beginning of my senior year of high school and graduated from Keaau High. This was due to the lava Read This Story »

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Nikka Takane

Student: Nikka Takane UH Hilo Major: B.A. in Communications, M.A. in Teaching After I had graduated from Waiakea high school I received my B.A. in Communications from the University of Hawaii at Hilo in 2012. I returned to UH Hilo Read This Story »

Jay Bumanglag

Jay Bumanglag

Student: Jay Bumanglag UH Hilo Major: B.A. in Mathematics, M.A. in Teaching I received my high school diploma from Pahoa High School, earned a B.A. in Mathematics from UH Hilo in 2013, and am currently in UH Hilo’s two-year Master Read This Story »

Michael Severino

Michael Severino

Student: Michael Severino UH Hilo Major: Business Administration – Finance Concentration Attending UH Hilo has been an unparalleled experience. Having graduated from Hawaii Preparatory Academy in Waimea, most students wanted to move off the island and experience what the mainland Read This Story »

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Gregory Peters

Student: Gregory Peters High School – Connections public charter high school UH Hilo Major: Philosophy I spent a year at a community college in Arizona before enrolling into the University of Hawaii at Hilo. In my first semester, I was Read This Story »

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Chris Koscik

Student: Chris Koscik High School – St Joseph School UH Hilo Major: Political Science What I appreciate most about the University of Hawaii at Hilo is its environment; it’s filled with intelligent people with whom you have the opportunity to Read This Story »

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Helaman Tafua

Student: Helaman Tafua High School – Pahoa UH Hilo Major: Computer science Class Standing – Senior I am grateful to UH Hilo for it has definitely helped to shape who I am today. When I was in high school, I Read This Story »

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Anthony Daub

Student: Anthony Daub High School – Waiakea UH Hilo Major: Nursing Class Standing – Senior My name is Anthony Daub, a senior nursing student here at The University of Hawaii at Hilo. I decided to pursue the career of nursing Read This Story »

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Anthony Eton

Student: Anthony Eton High School – West Hawaii Expiration Academy UH Hilo Major: Environmental Studies, Class Standing – Senior I graduated from the West Hawaii Expiration Academy in 2010 and began my college education at the Hawaii community college in Read This Story »

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Theodore (Teddy) Derego

Student: Theodore (Teddy) Derego High School – Kamehameha Keaau Campus UH Hilo Major: Computer Science Class Standing – Junior I graduated from Kamehameha School’s Keaau campus in 2012. UH Manoa and UH Hilo accepted and offered me full scholarships. I Read This Story »

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Elijah Livingston

Student: Elijah Livingston UH Hilo Major: Performing Arts Class Standing – Senior Elijah Livingston began attending the University of Hawaii at Hilo in the spring of 2012. He was originally disinterested in getting a college education since he used to Read This Story »

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Sierra Mitchell

Student: Sierra Mitchell High School – Keaau UH Hilo Major: Environmental Studies Class Standing – Junior Sierra Mitchell graduated from Kea’au High School in 2010 and by the fall of the same year she was enrolled at the Hawai’i Community Read This Story »

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Kala’i Blakemore

Kala’i Blakemore High School – Kamehameha High School UH Hilo Major: Art Kala’i Blakemore graduated from Kamehameha High School in 2013. Shortly after, she enrolled into the University of Hawaii at Hilo and declared herself as an Art major.  At Read This Story »

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Alexander Guerrero

Student: Alexander Guerrero High School – Kamehameha Schools Maui UH Hilo Major: Hawaiian Studies, History, Anthropology Class standing –Senior As a student of Ka Haka ‘Ula O Ke’elikōlani the College of Hawaiian Language at UH Hilo, I have had the Read This Story »

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Ashli Hirai

Ashli Hirai Waiakea High School UH Hilo, Fall 2014-Bachelors of Science in Animal Science (Pre-Veterinary Medicine Specialization) with a Minor in Biology UH Hilo provided me with the knowledge and experience that I needed to gain acceptance to veterinary school. Read This Story »

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James Akau

Student: James Akau High School – Kamehameha Kapalama Campus UH Hilo, TCBES Master’s program I graduated from Kamehameha high school’s Kapalama campus in 2005 and earned my Bachelors of Science in Biology and minor in Chemistry from Chapman University in Read This Story »

Gayle Bovee

Gayle Bovee

As a non-traditional student, I knew I would need all the help I could get. My family is very supportive, but I needed an academic guide once in a while, especially when it came to math. When I arrived at Read This Story »

Everette Ganir

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Student: Everette Ganir
High School: Pahoa
UH Hilo Major: Computer Science, Dorrance Scholar

I attended Pahoa schools from kindergarten until the beginning of my senior year of high school and graduated from Keaau High. This was due to the lava flow threat at that time, where all students had to be transferred for safety reasons.

I am currently a computer science major though I had started as a math major. During my orientation week there was a career fair where I was able to learn more about UH Hilo’s computer science program and its offerings. After learning how similar computer science was to math, since it involves a lot of problem solving, and all the career opportunities there are in comparison to math graduates I was convinced to switch my major. Even after such a short time within the computer science program, I am very excited about my future. I can see myself diving further into the world of technology and I hope to one day chase my childhood dreams of developing new technologies for photography, video games, web design, or anything related to the future advancements in technology.

I mainly chose to attend UH Hilo because I received the Dorrance scholarship, which requires that attendance at UH Hilo. It is a very beneficial scholarship; it provided me with 10,000 dollars a year to pay for my college expenses such as my tuition, fees, books and other supplies, and my living expenses. It also gives me many opportunities during the summer to gain hands on experience in various areas of study while earning credits. In order for me to have been awarded this scholarship I, most importantly, had to be a first generation college student in my family. I also had to fill out their application, write an essay, and be interviewed by the provider of this scholarship. I am very happy to have heard of this scholarship through one of the many scholarship presentations I heard about in high school. Thanks to this scholarship I can start my college journey on the right foot and really focus on my studies.

In spite of the fact that I was required to attend UH Hilo I am very glad to be having this experience here at home. Not only is it cheaper, but it is where my family is, it is where my friends are, and it is simply where home is for me. I had thought about going away for college, but when I visited the mainland, it was such a cultural shock and I realized how difficult it would be for me to move there. I am grateful to be attending UH Hilo; the great instructors make you feel even more at home. They are so approachable and you can tell that they really care about your success. It is these aspects that create a magnificent learning environment and I look forward to the rest of my educational journey here at UH Hilo.

Nikka Takane

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Student: Nikka Takane
UH Hilo Major: B.A. in Communications, M.A. in Teaching

After I had graduated from Waiakea high school I received my B.A. in Communications from the University of Hawaii at Hilo in 2012. I returned to UH Hilo in 2014 to join the Master of Arts in Teaching program (MAT) and recently graduated this year. The University has been home to me for the past 6 years and I couldn’t be more grateful to attend the college that was close to home and my family. It provided me the opportunity to fulfill my dream of becoming a teacher and give back to the community that I grew up in.

Teaching is not only about a paycheck to me and that is something that I have learned from my professors at UH Hilo; they take time to get to know you and understand what your interests are, how you learn best, and ensure that you succeed in their classrooms as well as in your life outside the classrooms. If a situation occurred in the classroom that you needed advice or help on their open doors philosophy allows them to listen and help you through it. They make sure that you are provided with the right tools and instructions before sending you off into the classroom.

The MAT program (especially) at UH Hilo has equipped me with valuable teaching skills that I have incorporated into my daily teaching method; it has a vision of H.E.A.R.T which is something we learned in our courses throughout the years. When you teach with H.E.A.R.T you have holistic views, provide empathy for self and others, you embrace artistic ideals, you follow a rigorous path, and you are able to transform the environments in which we work in. With that in mind, it has made me a better teacher because I remember to teach from the “heart” and not from the book. When my students are struggling or they don’t understand something it is not my intention to just give them the right answer so I can move on, it is about finding ways to help them find the connection so they are able to truly succeed. I love being able to work with students and see the light in their eyes when they get a problem correct.

I have noticed how different one class can be from the next. I know that no two classes will ever be the same and I will have to adjust my teaching strategies and activities to the students I have in my classroom. Planning new lessons and activities for my students has become the highlight of my day. Lesson plans are never set in stone since every student learns differently. Being able to plan lessons according to my students’ needs is an important part of my job that I enjoy. The extra hours that I put in to make sure my students get what they need in order to succeed is all worthwhile when I see the smile on their faces when they understand new concepts for the first time.

I am eager and excited for the journey of my teaching career and couldn’t be happier with where I am now. I love helping kids learn and fostering young minds to become independent self-directed learners. I want to instill in my students the passion and love for learning, I want them to love learning just as much as I love teaching them. Children are the key to our future and I want to be able teach them that learning can be fun so they take that attitude with them all the way to college. I want my students to succeed not only inside of the classroom but as individuals too. I tell my students that our classroom is a family and we have to help each other. One of my first classroom rules comes from the movie Lilo and Stitch, “Ohana means family, and family means that no one gets left behind or forgotten.” This is written on a poster in my classroom because I want to assure my students that each one of them will succeed; we will work together in trying different learning methods until we find one that fits all of their needs.

Jay Bumanglag

Jay Bumanglag

Student: Jay Bumanglag
UH Hilo Major: B.A. in Mathematics, M.A. in Teaching

I received my high school diploma from Pahoa High School, earned a B.A. in Mathematics from UH Hilo in 2013, and am currently in UH Hilo’s two-year Master of Arts in Teaching Program, planning to graduate in the spring of 2016. I have had a passion for teaching since I was an undergraduate; in my junior year, I was selected to be part of a new scholarship program called the Hawaii Noyce Teacher Scholarship Program. Within that program, I, along with other mathematic majors, were able to create “Math Days” for new college students, attend national conferences, and were given opportunities to develop our own teaching style through the use of new technology.

I was also fortunate enough to be a Teacher’s Assistant (TA), a math grader, and a scholar to help improve my teaching strategy. I greatly appreciate the support and one-on-one time provided by professors in the math department, and make an effort to create a similar learning environment in the class I teach. I enjoy building positive relationships with my students and unfolding how each individual learns. Every day is a new day, whether it be teaching a lesson differently or implementing new strategies to get a particular task done. I aspire to become a Nationally Board Certified teacher and to get into a Doctorate’s program focusing on Education. I am also considering taking on an administrative role in the future.

 

Michael Severino

Michael Severino

Student: Michael Severino
UH Hilo Major: Business Administration – Finance Concentration

Attending UH Hilo has been an unparalleled experience. Having
graduated from Hawaii Preparatory Academy in Waimea, most students
wanted to move off the island and experience what the mainland had to offer.
I attended Washington State University during my freshman year
and decided to return to UH Hilo to complete my undergraduate
education for a number of reasons. I soon found out, however, the best
thing about our university is we have the small class sizes of a
private university coupled with the lower tuition rates of a public
institution. At Washington State, I was attending classes with
hundreds of other students and if you had questions you were forced to
ask a TA or your study group. However, at UH Hilo I’ve developed
professional relationships with most of my professors and even our
college’s Dean and they have all played an integral role in my
development as a student and a professional. In fact, just recently my
professors assisted me in obtaining an internship with Merrill Lynch
over the summer here in Hawaii. I couldn’t be happier with my
undergraduate experience at UH Hilo!

Gregory Peters

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Student: Gregory Peters
High School – Connections public charter high school
UH Hilo Major: Philosophy

I spent a year at a community college in Arizona before enrolling into the University of Hawaii at Hilo. In my first semester, I was registered as a psychology major, but I changed over to philosophy shortly after because it applied more to my interests and future career goals. The philosophy program at UH Hilo has thoroughly provoked my curiosity for learning and expanding my knowledge of all different types of philosophies. It has especially taught me to have a more gracious acceptance of one’s own failures; the realization that you cannot always be a perfect student or a flawless person has brought me down to earth in ways that have benefited me personally.

One of the main things I appreciate about UH Hilo is its unique atmosphere; it’s very peaceful and is not as high stress as other colleges can be. At UH Hilo, it’s all about what you make of it and the student body is very aware of that. The people at UH Hilo have given me many opportunities to learn from them; you can strike up an intellectual conversation with fellow students and instructors alike. These sorts of interactions are what have taught me to be more conscious, open-minded, and accepting of other’s opinions and perspectives; it also has broadened my own perspectives and has enlightened me to new ideas and concepts which really tie into my studies.

The UH Hilo also has some great student services that have made my experience here even more positive. The counseling services office provides students with a helpful combination of academic and personal advice, depending on what you need and what you are going through. The counseling service staff knows the school and the struggles that students can go through, and I think it is very conducive to talk to someone at the school you attend about educational matters, regardless of what they might be. Additionally, the staff is very honest; they never make you feel like you are simply receiving basic responses but rather a realistic sense that you are being heard and understood. The University Disability Service (UDS) also offers a variety of accommodations for those who are not as well equipped as other students; they provide note-takers, early registration, and proctor testing which allows for tests to be taken alone and to be given a little extra time.

After I graduate, I would really like to become a fiction writer. I feel that my philosophy education will allow me to create intricate and realistic characters. And since I will be knowledgeable in the many forms of thought, I believe that would make my characters more believable and relatable to a wide range of audiences. I also think that philosophy should be incorporated in today’s fictional literature. Philosophy was the original school of thought and almost everything can be connected to a philosophy. I feel that a fiction could benefit from adding more philosophy to its themes because it would create a more captivating form of fiction, and it would allow readers to expand their own philosophies. I am extremely passionate about this and hope to make it a reality in my future because I would love to share what I have learned, and what I will continue to learn, on a large and intimate scale.

Chris Koscik

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Student: Chris Koscik
High School – St Joseph School
UH Hilo Major: Political Science

What I appreciate most about the University of Hawaii at Hilo is its environment; it’s filled with intelligent people with whom you have the opportunity to learn from, directly or vicariously. In addition to learning from the instructors, the student body at UH Hilo is another source of knowledge because it provides a diverse experience that allows for the exploration of divergent opinions. The faculty members also contribute to this wide range of perspectives; most of them have hands-on experience directly related to their field of teaching, which contribute greatly to my learning. It is these factors that have taught me how to think and perceive more open-mindedly. I find the diversity at UH Hilo so wonderful and it has made me more aware of the value of my surroundings; I cannot imagine that in other colleges that there is this same sense of diversity.

The education I have received at UH Hilo has given me a broader view of the world in spite of how small Hawaii is in comparison to the rest of the world. The educational programs incorporate exploration and community integration. Prerequisite courses connect to the local environment and community to enlighten us on how everything can be linked to the greater world we live in. Within the political science program, I have had the opportunity to learn from amazing guest speakers; for instance I had the great pleasure of meeting Gary Grappo, the former U.S. ambassador to Oman. It was a great learning experience that furthered my intellectual worldview that I find crucial for my studies.

From the exceptional experiences that I have had at the UH Hilo I desire to further my education in political science; however there is no political science masters degree available here, so I will have to pursue that at UH Manoa. I aspire to involve myself in local government and I believe that I would make a resourceful administrator. I would greatly enjoy providing a helping hand in the governing process, but I would mainly strive for the pursuit of improving Hawaii’s socioeconomic and community well-being.

Helaman Tafua

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Student: Helaman Tafua
High School – Pahoa
UH Hilo Major: Computer science
Class Standing – Senior

I am grateful to UH Hilo for it has definitely helped to shape who I am today. When I was in high school, I got good grades and thought I learned a fair amount in my time there. However, during my first year at UH Hilo I felt that I had learned more in one year than all the years at my high school.

UH Hilo is a very diverse university and you’d get to meet people from all over. This exposure has taught me a lot about the world outside of our little Big Island.

I have taken advantage of the many opportunities that UH Hilo offers. For the past two summers I was able to land internships for positions that are related to my computer science major. Those internships were paid positions, and they helped me to pay for my college education.

Joining the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM) team at UH Hilo helped me to better learn and understand the field of computer science. During ACM meetings, we would solve programming problems to prepare for a yearly competition on Oahu, which I am grateful to have participated twice in.

I am also grateful for having great faculty in my department. There are two professors who have greatly facilitated my learning: Dr. Michael Peterson and Dr. Keith Edwards. They engage my interest while teaching even when the material may sometimes be complex.

One thing that surprised me and which I am incredibly grateful for is the scholarship opportunities at UH Hilo. There is an easy general application system for multiple scholarships. I have been lucky enough to receive several scholarships from UH Hilo to the point where I don’t have to work to pay tuition; although I still work.

My original plans after completing my degree at UH Hilo was to become a video game programmer. However, I recently changed my goal to become an officer in the military; in a position that is relevant to my degree in computer science. I am still deciding between the Air Force and Army branches, but I want to serve my country as well as gain the experience and discipline that comes from the service.

Anthony Daub

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Student: Anthony Daub
High School – Waiakea
UH Hilo Major: Nursing
Class Standing – Senior

My name is Anthony Daub, a senior nursing student here at The University of Hawaii at Hilo. I decided to pursue the career of nursing soon after I graduated from Waiakea High School. Both of my parents are nurses and I see firsthand the impacts they have made in people’s lives; I want to make a difference like they have done. When I got accepted into the nursing program, there was a huge change in pace and the curriculum was much different from anything I’ve experienced before. In the second semester of nursing school, our class was introduced to Adult Health; in my opinion, this is the most difficult course nursing school has to offer. In just the first few weeks of the course, I had learned multiple chapters containing valuable information such as how each body system operates and how to provide nursing care to a patient who has diseases and conditions within the given body system. Our Instructor, Dr. Davis would not only teach us the content, but would expect our class to apply this information into a clinical situation. This method of teaching caused us to build a strong foundation of knowledge, which greatly helps us in community and hospital settings as well as on the NCLEX exam our class will be taking shortly after graduating. Dr. Davis held several study sessions utilizing her own time before every exam to help us do well. She would walk up to the board and say, “okay, what do you want to talk about? Let’s do this!” Our class would ask any questions we had about the content and Dr. Davis would discuss the answer to us in a comprehensive and meaningful way. She also created her own power-point presentations, provided the class with relevant journal articles, and utilized her vast wealth of personal nursing experience and expertise to facilitate and enhance our learning. Our nursing class takes what we learned from the adult health course, and we apply it directly to the community where we take care of patients and provide excellent nursing care. Dr. Davis is just one example of all the great faculty members we are so fortunate to have here at UH Hilo who go above and beyond to ensure our success. I feel like the UH Hilo school of nursing doesn’t only prepare us to pass our certification exams, but also puts emphasis on developing us into competent and caring healthcare professionals. I can speak on behalf of the Nursing Class of 2015; we are all extremely satisfied with the education we receive here at UH Hilo and will soon become proud alumni’s in just a few short months!!

Anthony Eton

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Student: Anthony Eton
High School – West Hawaii Expiration Academy
UH Hilo Major: Environmental Studies,
Class Standing – Senior

I graduated from the West Hawaii Expiration Academy in 2010 and began my college education at the Hawaii community college in Kona; while I was there I took regional geography and the geography of Hawaii—online courses taught by UH Hilo’s Drew Capp. Capp’s introduction to environmental science is what inspired me to enroll at UH Hilo and now I am currently a senior in the Environmental Studies program.

I have appreciated my time at UH Hilo; it has given me a better opportunity to socialize. Growing up here on the Big Island gave me somewhat of a narrow social life. Being enrolled here at UH Hilo has afforded me opportunities to meet many people from several different places both in and out of the country. I enjoy the social atmosphere at UH Hilo; every semester I go to Hell Week so I can get through the toughest part of the semester with fellow students and receive free food. Besides the social aspect I feel that the learning environment at UH Hilo has allowed me to keep my individuality. Although I have come a long way since high school I feel like I can still be the same person I was in high school.

After graduating from UH Hilo, I aspire to join the Department of Land and Natural Resources (DLNR). I specifically desire to play a role in reforestation efforts by doing field work such as replanting native species or removing invasive species from areas in need. Receiving a position in the National Forestry Service, or even getting a federal job, would also be a great post-graduation accomplishment. Regardless of what the future will bring I feel confident that the education I received here at UH Hilo, along with my workaholic nature, will get me to where I want to go in my life.

Theodore (Teddy) Derego

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Student: Theodore (Teddy) Derego
High School – Kamehameha Keaau Campus
UH Hilo Major: Computer Science
Class Standing – Junior

I graduated from Kamehameha School’s Keaau campus in 2012. UH Manoa and UH Hilo accepted and offered me full scholarships. I chose UH Hilo because I believe that UH Hilo is not as high stress as other universities may be, but more importantly it has a better computer science program. The instructors are very knowledgeable. Harry ‘Keith’ Edwards, who coaches the ACM team here at UH Hilo, introduced me to the program in my freshman year and I have been doing it every year since. It is a lot of fun; every year our team goes to Oahu to compete with other universities. At this annual competition, we spend five hours to complete ten programming challenges that usually have fun pop culture themes. We usually come in second place out of fifteen teams. I hope that in our next competition we can win first place, but honestly I am just happy to go. When I go to these competitions. I no longer feel too competitive, I just enjoy the experience—it is what I love to do. Working alongside with equally talented classmates and intelligent instructors have benefited me personally. In high school, I may have entered such events with a different attitude; I used to think of myself as sort of a hot shot, but my experiences at UH Hilo and all the great people I have met have humbled me and helped put everything into perspective.
I am currently in my junior year at UH Hilo. After graduating, I hope to be a computer programmer for Google. It would enable me to use the skills I have learned to continue doing the things that interest me. I am especially interested in working on the centralized server for self-driving cars or working on the back end of Google Maps, which connects the person using it to the program from a computer at the headquarters in California. Although I am very hopeful for that particular career path, I have thought of other possible careers to pursue. I may apply to Microsoft or Drop Box; it would be great to work for Drop Box because I would have the opportunity to work with Guido Van Rossum who invented Python, a popular programming language that I personally enjoy.