National events of the last two weeks have furthered the resolve of the UH Hilo community to be unflinching in its commitment to embrace diversity and inclusion on our campus while fostering and practicing the spirit of aloha in all that we do.
At UH Hilo we take pride in our diverse campus community, and embrace all who come here to work, study, and grow. Universities are places where ideas and cultures intersect, and we strive to ensure this is a place where the exchange of diverse ideas can occur in a safe and productive environment.
National events of the last two weeks have furthered the resolve of the UH Hilo community to be unflinching in its commitment to embrace diversity and inclusion on our campus while fostering and practicing the spirit of aloha in all that we do. I ask that each of you make a personal commitment to do your part to ensure our campus is a place where our differences can make us better, within a framework of respect and aloha.
As the most diverse four-year university in the country, we serve as an academic model to the world where people from across the globe live in harmony, thinking independently together.
UH Hilo is here to support you with a variety of services for our students, faculty and staff. Should you need assistance, please reach out or make referrals to the available campus services below:
With today’s technology, the guidance of expert mentors, and a deep desire to make new discoveries, UH Hilo students are learning from many sources and contributing to their selected fields, their communities, and the world.
The Mission Statement of the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo begins with the adage, ‘A‘ohe pau ka ‘ike i ka hālau ho‘okahi (One learns from many sources). One unique aspect of UH Hilo is that we offer both undergraduate and graduate students many opportunities to do research in a variety of fields. Our students are doing important work, collecting and analyzing new data, publishing findings alongside their mentors, graduating with a packed résumé and a degree, fully prepared to join the workforce or continue to a terminal degree.
I would like to share with you some research projects where our students are learning by doing the work, making the discoveries, and enriching the world with new knowledge.
UH Hilo professors, scientists and students provided valuable expertise and resources on multiple fronts during the recent lava flow in Puna, helping government officials assess hazards to the public.
UH Hilo volcanologist Cheryl Gansecki, assisted by undergraduate students, provided real-time chemistry analysis of lava samples. The information helped government scientists determine how the lava would behave and how fast it moved, critical information for response plans.
While completing a summer internship at the University of Michigan, UH Hilo astronomy student Kyle Steckler developed an algorithm to discover minor planets that orbit the sun beyond Neptune. The algorithm did not fully work all summer and he was not discovering anything new. But about three hours before he gave his final presentation at the symposium in Ann Arbor, he was running his software and it suddenly popped up something new—Kyle had discovered a new object in our solar system!
Kyle’s internship was funded through the Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program, a highly competitive program funded by the National Science Foundation that supports active research done by undergraduates. He will graduate with this amazing accomplishment already on his résumé, a solid foundation for making future discoveries.
Another astronomy student, Chantelle Kiessner, is doing solar investigations, having been awarded three internships over the course of the past two years. She started in 2016 as a Hawai‘i Space Grant Consortium trainee and then, building on the skills learned as a trainee, she was selected for the Akamai Internship Program in the summer of 2017. As an Akamai Scholar she was placed at the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope on Maui to work on quantifying data on the new Adaptive Optics system where she looked for ways to correct the errors introduced by Earth’s atmosphere.
Chantelle then conducted research over the past summer as an intern in the REU program. She studied at the Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, a research facility at the University of Colorado, Boulder. While there, she worked at the National Solar Observatory analyzing spectral data from the solar chromosphere, the reddish outer layer of the sun.
These two students are already earning their research chops as undergraduates and I can only imagine the great work they will do in their future careers.
Sabena Siddiqui, a graduate student in tropical conservation biology and environmental science, is researching the sounds of humpback whales when they are not singing, an aspect of their communication that is clearly important but little studied. Sabena’s investigations focus on spectral analysis of the social sounds of the humpback whale population that breeds in Hawaiʻi.
Sabena secured funding to attend UH Hilo through the NSF Centers for Research Excellence in Science and Technology (CREST) with partial funding through the Listening Observatory for Hawaiian Ecosystems bioacoustics lab at UH Hilo.
In addition to her graduate studies, for the past seven years Sabena has served as the student chair of the American Cetacean Society, the world’s oldest whale conservation organization. Her role is to be a mentor and guide to student leaders of other groups on campus.
‘A‘ohe pau ka ‘ike i ka hālau ho‘okahi
Armed with today’s technology, the guidance of expert mentors, and a deep desire to make new discoveries, these students are learning from many sources and already contributing to their selected fields, their communities, and the world. In a future column I will share with you the work of several programs that support our students in exploring and investigating our island and beyond.
A limited number of tickets and ground transportation are available at no cost to all UH Hilo employees with support from the Chancellor’s Professional Development Fund.
The Women’s Center at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo announces the availability of funding from the Chancellor’s Professional Development Committee to support attendance at the upcoming 2018 Hawai‘i Island Women’s Leadership Summit on Friday, October 19, 2018 at the Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay.
Keynote speaker is Jackie Young, a consultant, speaker, and advocate for social change and healthy communities.
Faculty recently awarded tenure and promotion were recognized at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Interim Chancellor’s 2018 Fall Gathering event on Sept. 28.
“The awarding of tenure and promotion is the university’s recognition of excellence in teaching, scholarship and service,” notes Interim Chancellor Marcia Sakai. “We honor and congratulate these faculty members on their achievements.”
Newcomers to UH Hilo in staff and faculty positions were also introduced at the event.
TENURE AND PROMOTION
The following faculty have been awarded TENURE AND PROMOTION:
Joseph Genz, Associate Professor of Anthropology
Comfort Sumida, Assistant Specialist
The following faculty have been awarded TENURE:
Kurt Dela Kruz, Jr. Specialist
Jonathan Goebel, Associate Professor of Art
Mary Louise Haraguchi, Librarian III
Faith Mishina, Associate Professor of Language
Ryan Perroy, Associate Professor of Geography
The following faculty have been awarded PROMOTION:
Jonathan Awaya, Professor of Biology
Kathy Cooksey, Associate Professor of Physics and Astronomy
Mazen Hamad, Professor of Chemistry
Charmaine Higa-McMillan, Professor of Psychology
Marina Karides, Professor of Sociology
Sarah Marusek, Professor of Political Science
Faith Mishina, Professor of Language
Kirsten Møllegaard, Professor of English
Misty Pacheco, Associate Professor of Kinesiology and Exercise Science
Marianne Takamiya, Professor of Physics and Astronomy
Jin Yin, Professor of Communication
The following faculty have been awarded DELEGATED PROMOTION:
Reyna Morel, Assistant Professor of Communication
Justin Reinicke, Assistant Specialist
NEWCOMERS TO UH HILO
The following are new members of the UH Hilo ‘Ohana:
Kumalani Borling, Security Guard
Clint Collins, Unit Diving Coordinator
Cory Kaizuka, Project Manager
Garrick Tamashiro, Security Guard
Melanie Marciel, Academic Advisor
College of Agriculture, Forestry, and Natural Resource Management
Britton Clark Cole, Farm Manager
Sharadchandra Marahatta, Assistant Professor
Lissa Tsutsumi, Instructor
Cheryl Yara, Farm Technician
College of Arts and Sciences
Helen Duley, Instructor of Sociology
Patsy Iwasaki, Lecturer of Communication and English
Michael Skinner, Instructor of History
College of Business and Economics
James Czarski, Instructor of Economics
Andrey Simonov, Assistant Professor of Accounting
Erin Swain, Administrative Services Officer
Heng Tien, Instructor of Marketing and Management and Career Development Coordinator
College of Natural and Health Sciences
John Burns, Assistant Professor of Marine Science
Joel Kaufmann, Instructor of Biology
Daniel O’Conner, Instructor of Physics and Astronomy
Kathleen Baumgardner’s background and experience in strategic planning will be extremely valuable in developing a new, updated strategic plan for our campus.
Aloha University of Hawai‘i at Hilo ‘Ohana,
I am pleased to announce the casual hire appointment of Ms. Kathleen Baumgardner as our strategic planning project manager effective October 1, 2018.
Ms. Baumgardner was employed at Colorado State University College of Engineering for over 15 years serving as the director of strategic communications and coordinator of development, advancement and administration. She previously was the director of college communication and the associate director of admissions at Knox College in Galesburg, Illinois.
At Colorado State and Knox College, Ms. Baumgardner worked on strategic planning, branding activities and communication strategies with internal groups and external constituents to actively support new strategic goals and initiatives.
Her background and experience in strategic planning will be extremely valuable in developing a new, updated strategic plan for our campus. Please join me in welcoming Kathleen to our UH Hilo ‘ohana.