Search Results : Susan Enright

May 112017
 

The new spectrometer is the only one in the region and substantially increases research and student training the UH Hilo Analytical Laboratory can support in and out of state.

By Susan Enright.

Erik

(Left to right) Technician Erik Johnson, Lab Manager Tara Holitzki and Prof. of Marine Science Tracy Wiegner stand next to the new Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer, UH Hilo Analytical Labratory. Courtesy photos, click to enlarge.

The Analytical Laboratory at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo is a hub for research and training on Hawai‘i Island. The lab’s primary focus is supporting ecological research and water quality studies by providing analytical services to researchers in the UH System and federal and state agencies. The lab also provides analytical services for visiting researchers from other universities.

It is the only facility on Hawai‘i Island that trains students to use analytical instrumentation for environmental sample analysis.

Tracy Wiegner

Tracy Wiegner

The Analytical Laboratory is managed by Tara Holitzki under the direction of Tracy Wiegner, a professor of marine science who specializes in coastal water quality.

A new Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer

Last year, the lab was awarded a grant of over half-a-million dollars from the National Science Foundation for the purchase and support of a new Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer.

“We are now just completing its installation and the training of our staff on it,” says Wiegner.

The award is granted through the NSF’s Major Research Instrumentation Program, which, according to the NSF website, supports “research-intensive learning environments that promote the development of a diverse workforce and next generation instrumentation, as well as facilitates academic and private sector partnerships.”

Collaborators on the grant include researchers from UH Hilo, UH Mānoa, the USDA Forest Service, Stanford University, Utah State University, and Edith Cowen University Western Australia.

UH Hilo’s Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer is the only one of its kind in the state and region. It is capable of analyzing both solids and liquids including soils, plant and animal tissues, and water.

Specifically, the new spectrometer can analyze solid samples (soil, plant and animal tissue, carbonates) for stable isotopes of carbon, nitrogen, sulfur, hydrogen, and oxygen. Liquid samples (water catchment, shore water) can be analyzed for stable nitrogen and oxygen isotopes in nitrate, hydrogen and oxygen isotopes in water, and stable carbon isotopes in dissolved organic carbon and carbon dioxide.

Students in lab

(L-R) Sione Lam Yuen and Bryan Tonga, two UH Hilo marine science majors working as laboratory assistants funded by the HELP (Highly Engaged Learning Positions) program through the Pacific Islander Student Center, prepare samples for analysis on the new Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer.

Wiegner says applications of stable isotopes in environmental science have grown exponentially in the last 20 years allowing for a greater understanding of biogeochemical cycles in natural and human-influenced ecosystems, food web structure and dynamics, animal migrations, paleoclimate, hydrology, as well as the ability to identify pollution sources and track them.

“This instrument allows for a new suite of elements in different forms to be analyzed, substantially increasing the types of studies and student training the UH Hilo Analytical Laboratory can support in and out of state,” Wiegner explains.

The UH Hilo Analytical Lab

Wiegner says the awarding of the grant speaks to the growing success of the lab facility. The laboratory was established in 2003 with NSF funding through the Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research or EPSCoR, a statewide program initiated at UH Hilo to increase research and training infrastructure.

“This lab facility is hands down the greatest NSF EPSCoR success story at UH Hilo,” says Wiegner.

The lab has a statewide and international reputation for high quality and rapid services. There is an established, loyal clientele, which includes faculty and researchers from UH Hilo and UH Mānoa, as well as other state, national, and international institutions and agencies.

Clients use the laboratory’s services for research projects and hands-on student training, and often have their collaborators submit samples to the facility.

Erik Johnson stands next to the spectrometer.

Erik Johnson, an analytical laboratory technician with bachelor and master degrees from UH Hilo, will be leading the effort to get the new Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer up and running and developing new services for laboratory clients.

A good example of the lab’s current impact on the local community and economy is as a resource for agriculturalists.  Bruce Mathews, a soil scientist and dean of the UH Hilo College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Management, says the lab is increasingly being relied upon by local farmers.

“Local farmers require rapid turnaround times in order to remain competitive with respect to timely diagnosis of crop and livestock nutrition problems, optimizing management of inputs, and meeting environmental and safety regulations,” Mathews explains. “I fully expect this trend to continue.”

The facility also provides support to over 20 different undergraduate and graduate courses at UH Hilo, and provides outreach service to community members with inquiries about environmental health such as with agricultural soils and catchment water.

The lab includes analytical chemistry instrumentation for environmental samples (for example water, soil, plant, animal tissue) totaling over $1.5 million. Since its establishment, the lab is increasingly successful with over 125 clients, primarily university and government collaborators.

Bryan Tonga in lab

Student Bryan Tonga weighs out samples for analysis on the Isotope Ratio Mass Spectrometer.

“Revenue the lab earns is critical for growing the lab’s capacity to serve the larger scientific community while contributing to the education of our students,” says Don Straney, chancellor at UH Hilo.

Training scientists for the future

Wiegner says the Analytical Laboratory is integral to UH Hilo’s mission to inspire learning, discovery, and creativity inside and outside the classroom, and to improve the quality of life in Hawai‘i, the Pacific region, and the world.

“The expanded analyses capacity supported by the NSF grant will engage even more underrepresented students in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics or STEM disciplines, exposing them to cutting-edge technology and allowing them to gain practical and employable research experience,” she says.

 

About the authors: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo. Tracy Wiegner contributed significantly to this report.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Apr 272017
 

A flag display has been set up at UH Hilo to give viewers a visual of national assault statistics if applied to the UH Hilo student population.

By Susan Enright. Photos by Zoe Coffman.

Flag display.

Flag display on the lawn outside the Campus Center at UH Hilo.

 

April is National Sexual Assault Awareness Month and as part of a calendar of events at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo, a flag display has been set up on the lawn outside the University Classroom Building to give viewers a visual of national assault statistics if applied to the UH Hilo student population.

Destiny Rodriguez

Destiny Rodriguez

“Although much of the UH Hilo community may know the statistics surrounding sexual assault, we feel a visual display can also be quite effective in getting the message across,” says Destiny Rodriguez, a Title IX/VAWA educator and confidential advocate at the UH Hilo Office of Equal Opportunity (OEO).

For the display, national statistics were applied to the population of UH Hilo students to arrive at possible statistics within that population. The national numbers are alarming.

According to the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC), statistics show that one in five women and one in 16 men have been or will be sexually assaulted while in college. Additionally, Brown University conducted a study that showed 12 percent of college students identify as LGBTQ+, while the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention concluded that one in three LGBTQ+ individuals have been or will be sexually assaulted while in college.

Based on these statistics and the number of women and men enrolled at UH Hilo this semester, Rodriguez calculated how many men, women and LGBTQ+ individuals may have been or may be sexually assaulted while in college.

“Although these numbers are alarming, and not specified in the display, it is important to be aware that 427 women, 86 men, and 139 LGBTQ+ individuals could be or have been sexually assaulted while in college,” she explains. “The display indicates these categories by using teal, blue, and purple flags representing women, men and LGBTQ+ individuals, respectively.”

EEO/AA office student employees Alexis Sagaz, Sara Costantino, and Yesenia Villafuerte helped Rodriguez with the display. The project idea came from the Prevention, Awareness, Understanding (PAU) Violence Program, a UH System effort based at UH Mānoa to eliminate gender-based violence on all 10 campuses. The PAU Violence Program also sponsored the display.

Amy Gregg

Amy Gregg

Amy Gregg, advisor and instructor of the UH Hilo Gender and Women’s Studies Program, sent Rodriguez an email (cc’d to the university community) thanking her for the display.

“Thank you for the very effective display of sexual assault statistics via the colored flags in the grass by UCB,” writes Gregg in the email. “This is a moving and sobering tribute. Thank you for bringing awareness to this important topic, and for all the work you are doing as an educator and confidential advocate in the OEO office. I’m proud of how you are putting your Gender & Women’s Studies major from UH Hilo to work for social justice!”

 

Flag display on lawn.

 

About the author: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

About the photographer: Zoe Coffman (senior, art) is a photography intern in the Office of the Chancellor.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Feb 162017
 

Each semester, the endowment will fund a scholarship of $500 to several students enrolled in one of the college’s degree programs who have been accepted into an internship program.

By Susan Enright.

Three Fujimoto Scholars—(center, l-r) William Lewis, Rissa Domingo, and Julia Jaitt—were honored at a recent scholarship inauguration ceremony held at UH Hilo. At far left is Drew Martin, dean of the College of Business and Economics, and at far right is benefactor Bobby Fujimoto. Courtesy photo.

Students majoring in business and economics at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo can now pursue a new scholarship at the university thanks to an endowment bestowed to the university by a family of local business leaders.

The Robert M. and Alice K. Fujimoto Foundation established the $35,000 endowment fund last fall to support students pursuing a degree at the UH Hilo College of Business and Economics. An additional gift of $5,000 was given to make awards immediately available to students this year.

Students must also be doing or pursuing at least one internship to qualify for the funds.

“On behalf of UH Hilo, we are deeply honored and proud to be the recipient of Bobby Fujimoto’s generous contribution to establish this scholarship fund,” says UH Hilo Chancellor Don Straney. “His gift will inspire and motivate students to reach their highest level of achievement while applying their learning to the real world of business before they graduate with their degree.”

Three Fujimoto Scholars—William Lewis, Rissa Domingo, and Julia Jaitt—were honored at a recent scholarship inauguration ceremony held at the college.

Each semester, the endowment will fund a scholarship of $500 to several students enrolled in one of the college’s degree programs who have been accepted into an internship program. The funds can be used for costs associated with attendance such as tuition, books and fees.

“The Fujimoto Family Scholarship is a game-changer for our students,” says Drew Martin, dean of the college. He notes a student he met recently who is taking the term off from school because he is $300 short for expenses. “Our students walk a fine line between working enough to pay for their educations and finding enough time to study.”

The benefactor

HPM Building Supply, a longtime local business run by generations of the Fujimoto family, has been a strong supporter of internship programs for many years.

“The company’s management believes applied learning is an important part of a student’s education,” explains Martin. “Support from the Fujimoto family demonstrates how the community can support our efforts to provide a quality business education.”

Robert “Bobby” Fujimoto, third generation at the family-run lumber and building materials business who became president of the company in 1954, has met with—and been impressed by—several UH Hilo business and economics students enrolled in internship programs.

“Mr. Fujimoto decided to take his commitment to student education and the community to a higher level,” says Martin. “He has provided a very generous gift to help students pay for their education and to support applied learning experiences. The outcome is our students are better prepared to become productive members of society.”

In addition to his $40,000 gift to the College of Business and Economics, Fujimoto has also made smaller but meaningful gifts to the UH Hilo ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center, UH Hilo Vulcan Athletics, UH Hilo Enrichment Funds and Hawai‘i Community College Enrichment Funds.

“We are also grateful for [Bobby’s] long years of service as a member and chairman of the Board of Regents,” says Straney. “His leadership was critical to shaping the University of Hawai‘i System as it is today.”

Scholarship inauguration ceremony

A scholarship inauguration ceremony was recently held at the College of Business and Economics. In addition to the three honorees, students, administrators, faculty, members of the local business community and members of the Fujimoto family attended.

Giving a few remarks at the event were Mariko Miho from the UH Foundation, Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Matt Platz, UH Hilo alumnus Kā‘eo Awana who works at HPM, Bobby Fujimoto and son Michael Fujimoto.

Faculty, administrators, and members of the Fujimoto family gather for photo at the Fujimoto Scholarship inauguration ceremony. (l-r) Mariko Miho, Drew Martin, Tam Vu, Roberta (Fujimoto) Chu, benefactor Bobby Fujimoto, Wendy (Fujimoto) Matsuura, Mike Fujimoto, Emmeline dePillis, and Peter Matsuura. Courtesy photo.

At the event, Lara Hughes (former public information intern in the UH Hilo Office of the Chancellor) was asked by Martin to share her personal story about the importance of internships during her studies at the university.

In her remarks, Hughes spoke about her experience receiving a scholarship to be an intern at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia over the summer; she was one of only two interns at the convention who earned a promotion during their internships.

“Receiving that scholarship and working as an intern for such a historic event, with such incredible professionals has opened my eyes to what the world can provide for me, and just how capable I truly am,” says Hughes in her inspirational message to the new beneficiaries and other students in attendance.

“This experience and all it has taught me, will stay with me for a lifetime. I also have no doubt that it will serve to help me move into the type of career that I hope to pursue.”

 

About the author: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Feb 152017
 

During the seven-month fellowship in Washington, DC, Prof. Belt will evaluate political humor in the context of presidential campaigns and its influence on the information environment available to voters.

By Susan Enright.

Main reading Hall at the Library of Congress, Washington, DC. Photo by Carol M. Highsmith.

Todd Belt

A political science professor at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo has been awarded the prestigious John W. Kluge Fellowship in Digital Studies for 2017. The fellowship will put Prof. Todd Belt in residence at the Library of Congress in Washington, DC, from May to December of 2017.

The John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress awards the Kluge Fellowship in Digital Studies to researchers to examine the impact of the digital revolution on society, culture and international relations using the library’s collections and resources.

“My project evaluates how political humor in the context of presidential campaigns influences the information environment available to voters,” explains Belt. “I am particularly interested in what differences exist between information environments prior to and after the internet revolution, which gives the common citizen a greater hand, for better or worse in shaping what we learn about candidates and their policies.”

During the past few years, Belt has conducted research on internet communication and presidential campaigns, with a particular focus on the difference between citizen-generated content and commercially-generated content.

“The archives at the Library of Congress, particularly the National Digital Newspaper Program, gives me access to a vast database for analysis of the role of political humor in the information environment prior to the digital revolution,” says Belt. “These data will be combined for analysis with my ongoing collection of post-internet revolution digital media in order to inform my current book manuscript on political humor and presidential campaigns.”

Belt teaches courses at UH Hilo on “Congress and the Presidency” as well as “Politics, Media and Public Opinion” that relate directly to the area of research he’ll be conducting during his fellowship. He also teaches a “Methods of Research” course, which will further benefit from his hands-on research utilizing the cutting-edge archives of the Library of Congress.

Belt received his master of arts and doctor of philosophy in political science from the University of Southern California. He received the University of Hawai‘i Frances David Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching in 2008.

More about Prof. Belt’s research and books.

 

About the author: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Feb 102017
 

Students are analyzing past and present cosmologies, discussing relationships between astrophysical and non-astrophysical perspectives, and placing them into historical, cultural, and personal context.

By Susan Enright.
This story is part of a series on new courses offered this semester.

Maunakea

Cathy Ishida

In a new course at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo, students are studying and analyzing Maunakea as a contemporary place of contrasting world views. Cosmos and Culture (ASTR 381/394) delves into historical, intellectual, social, and cultural context of astronomical discovery from a multitude of perspectives including the exploration of both scientific and nonscientific cosmologies.

Students in the class are exploring the skills and knowledge astronomers need—in addition to astronomy—to engage constructively in conversations about the past, present, and future of Maunakea.

The course invites students to inquire deeply into the historical, intellectual, social, and cultural context of astronomy as a field of study, asking students to investigate topics such as cultural astronomy, the philosophy of science, the history of astronomy, Hawaiian studies, cultural studies and other fields.

“I hope stepping back and evaluating the big picture, whether it’s the cosmology of a particular culture, the scientific enterprise, or their own lives, will become a habit for students in this course,” says Catherine Ishida, who is teaching the class.

Ishida, who moved to Hilo in 2002 to work at Subaru Telescope, where she did research on interactions among galaxies and how they contribute to the evolution of galaxies over time, used her fluency in English, Japanese and astronomy to contribute to the observatory’s public information and outreach.

Ishida received her doctor of philosophy in astronomy from UH Mānoa in 2004. In 2007, she interrupted her work in astronomy to become an ordained minister in the Unitarian Universalist tradition, a multi-religious humanist faith.

Since returning to Hilo in 2011, she has been teaching at the UH Hilo Department of Physics and Astronomy and consulting with local congregations “teaching practical philosophy and impractical physics.”

“Just as people have looked at the same sky for ages and came up with different interpretations, the same facts can have different meanings for different people,” she explains. “Science majors in particular have few opportunities in their curriculum to examine how such differences affect the content and context of their field of study. I hope the course helps students better negotiate those differences in personal, professional and communal settings.”

Cosmologies

Ishida says a key component of the new course is having students devise questions, invite conversation, and listen deeply to learn how astronomical and non-astronomical cosmologies inform people’s lives in Hawaiʻi today.

The course focuses on three areas: cultural astronomy, the scientific revolution, and cosmos and culture in contemporary Hawai‘i.

From the course description:

Introduction to Cultural Astronomy: After a basic review of fundamental skills necessary for successful cross cultural encounters, we’ll take a look at the variety of ways people have related to the sky through the naked eye prior to the wide dissemination of the Newtonian worldview.

The Scientific Revolution: Several developments began in the 15th century: global economic unification, technological and political dominance by Western Europeans, and a mechanistic worldview justified by the success of new ways of making truth claims. We’ll review basic concepts in the philosophy of science and apply them to close readings of the biographies of “iconic heroes of science.”

Cosmos and Culture in Contemporary Hawaiʻi: We’ll take a look at astrophysical cosmologies and non-astrophysical cosmologies that are alive in Hawaiʻi today by talking to people who live and promote them. Specific topics will include Hawaiian cosmology and star lore in the Hula traditions, Hawaiian wayfinding, developments in astrophysical research, and the institutions that sustain each of these.

Synthesis: We’ll apply what we learned throughout the semester to our own understanding of Maunakea as a contemporary locus for contrasting world views.

By the end of the course, Ishida says students will be able to describe a variety of past and present cosmologies, discuss relationships between astrophysical and non-astrophysical cosmologies, and place them into historical, cultural, and personal context. Students will also be able formulate a nuanced definition of science that reflects its complex realities.

“There are many issues that can be deeply personal, technical, and controversial in the local community,” she says. “The future of Maunakea is an obvious example, but there are other issues such as the future of agriculture and tourism. I hope that students will become skillful catalysts for meaningful conversation in the local community and beyond.”

 

Also in this series on new courses

New microbiology course at UH Hilo gives students holistic view of the environment

New course prepares fourth-year pharmacy students for comprehensive exam

New course at UH Hilo focuses on agricultural and food tourism

 

About the author of this series: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Feb 082017
 

The course gives students a unique perspective on microbial ecology and the health of the planet.

By Susan Enright.
This story is part of a series on new courses offered this semester.

A new course at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo boosts students understanding of the diverse roles of microorganisms in both terrestrial and marine environments. Environmental Microbiology (CBES 698) focuses on microbial biodiversity, microbes in extreme environments, environmental applications using microorganisms, bioremediation, antibiotic resistance, and biogeochemical cycling.

Students are also learning about the mechanisms of microorganisms and how they interact with the environment in a diversity of ways.

“The course is beneficial to graduate students in the Tropical Conservation Biology and Environmental Science program in giving them a unique perspective on the microbial ecology of the diverse environments critical to supporting the health of the planet,” says Lisa Muehlstein, a UH Hilo lecturer in marine science who is teaching the class.

The course is the only microbiology oriented course in the graduate program. Although it is an elective, this course in combination with other graduate courses gives the students a holistic view of the environment.

“This perspective might otherwise be incomplete without the microbiology component,” explains Muehlstein.

Lisa Muehlstein

Muehlstein received her master of science in microbiology from Wright State University, Ohio, and her doctor of philosophy in botany from the University of Georgia.

Her initial research focused on seagrass disease and she spent time working in both temperate and tropical habitats with research projects. She moved on to conduct research on conservation issues in tropical seagrass habitats and spent many years working for the Virgin Islands National Park Service on a diversity of projects.

Since her move to Hawai‘i, Muehlstein is active in teaching at UH Hilo as a lecturer. Her course load has included the development of several new courses, including a successful online course, Current Issues in Marine Science, and lecture courses including Marine Microbial Ecology and the graduate course Environmental Microbiology.

 

About the author of this story: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

Also in this series on new courses:

New astronomy course at UH Hilo: Maunakea as a contemporary place of contrasting world views

New course prepares fourth-year pharmacy students for comprehensive exam

New course at UH Hilo focuses on agricultural and food tourism

-UH Hilo Stories

Feb 032017
 

The course prepares fourth-year pharmacy students to take a comprehensive exam given nationally that measures competence to practice as a pharmacist.

By Susan Enright.
This story is part of a series on new courses offered this semester.

Supakit Wongwiwatthananukit

A new course to help prepare pharmacy students for licensure is being offered at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo this semester.

The purpose of the course is to introduce and prepare fourth-year pharmacy students at the Daniel K Inouye College of Pharmacy to a major comprehensive exam made up of the North American Pharmacist Licensure Examination (NAPLEX) and the Multistate Pharmacy Jurisprudence Examination (MPJE) and used by the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy (NABP) to assess a graduate’s competence to practice as a pharmacist.

“Successfully passing the (exam) is a challenge and often the final hurdle that our pharmacy graduates face to attain the pharmacist licensure,” says Supakit Wongwiwatthananukit, professor of pharmacy and interim associate dean for academic affairs at the college.

“I strongly believe this course will provide students a necessary review of the knowledge, judgment, and skills expected of career-ready, entry-level pharmacists.”

The course (PHPP 598-02: APPE NAPLEX/MPJE Preparation) prepares the students with the background knowledge, skills, and judgment necessary to understand how to utilize the resources and review content before taking the exams.

“Most importantly, with the use of various available on-line preparation tools and assessments from our clinical faculty panel, this review and preparation course can significantly improve our graduates’ overall confidence that they will successfully pass the licensure examination,” says Wongwiwatthananukit.

The course reviews previous content taught in the curriculum and offers students guidance on an outline of a study plan to cover content assessed in the exams.

The course is accessed online and is self-paced, consisting of 14 weekly sections. Students must complete each section by the end of a designated date before moving on to the next section.

 

About the author of this story: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Also in this series on new courses:

New astronomy course at UH Hilo: Maunakea as a contemporary place of contrasting world views

New microbiology course at UH Hilo gives students holistic view of the environment

New course at UH Hilo focuses on agricultural and food tourism

Feb 012017
 

Once a month, on the first Wednesday of the month, the fare for UH Hilo’s daily menu is 100 percent locally grown food.

By Susan Enright.

Surf n Turf Combo, grilled Kulana 21-day dry-aged Kulana rib-eye steak, seasoned with kiawe smoked salt and Kona Brewing longboard lager served with coconut crusted Kaua‘i shrimp.

The first “Local First” menu of 2017 is available today at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo.  Each day, the majority of the food served on the campus of UH Hilo is from local sources, increasing annually since 2012. Once a month, on the first Wednesday of the month, the daily menu is 100 percent locally grown food and called “Local First.”

Launching the first all-local menu of the semester, for Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017:

  • Grill Lunch: Da’ Luau Burger, 6 oz Makaweli Kaua‘i grass-fed beef burger topped with Miko Meats slow roasted kalua pig, grilled li hing mui pineapple on a LaTour Bakery taro bun with Waimea green leaf lettuce and Kunia tomatoes.
  • Deli Sandwich: Toasted Korean cheesesteak sandwich, thinly sliced, grilled, marinated Hawai‘i Island rib-eye steak, topped with cheddar cheese, grilled sweet onions and Waimea won bok kim chee on a housemade French roll.
  • Sizzling Salad: Kaua‘i shrimp ceviche stuffed in a grilled Kona avocado, served with Hawai‘i Island mixed greens.
  • Hot Line Entrée #1: Ni‘ihau lamb shepard’s pie, free-range Ni‘ihau Makaweli ground lamb topped with mashed local Okinawan purple sweet potato finished with a crisped, panko crust.
  • Hot Line Entrée #2: Surf n Turf Combo, grilled Kulana 21-day dry-aged Kulana rib-eye steak, seasoned with kiawe smoked salt and Kona Brewing longboard lager served with coconut crusted Kaua‘i shrimp.
  • Hot Line Vegetarian/Vegan: Grilled organic tofu poke, natural Pacific organic tofu, marinated in sweetened shoyu and grilled, tossed with sweet onions, green onions, Kona ogo, and inamona, served with steamed ‘uala.

Feki and Media is providing live entertainment from noon to 1:00 pm.

 

About the author of this story: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Jan 272017
 

The course provides an overview of the rapidly growing international fields of agritourism and food tourism.

By Susan Enright.
This story is part of a series on new courses offered this semester.

Brooke Hansen

A new course designed to help Hawai‘i move forward in local food production and tourism is being offered this semester at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo. The course on Agricultural and Food Tourism is covering the momentum of foodie movements—locavore, Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine, farm-to-table, food festivals—to examine how they can support the flourishing tourist market.

Guiding the course are themes of sustainability, cultural respect and teaching people through the metaphors of “island as earth” and “we are all in one canoe.”

“The course is geared towards hearing from people who have already engaged with food and ag tourism and those who wish to,” says Kimberly “Brooke” Hansen, an adjunct faculty in anthropology who is teaching the course.

Guest speakers for the course include Audrey Wilson (acclaimed food writer), Tom Menezes (senior vice president of Hawaiian Crown), Pomai Weigert (Hawai‘i AgriTourism Association), Luisa Castro (master preserver and food safety expert), and Nancy Ginter-Miller (Produce to Product, Inc.).

“We tour local farms and foodie venues and explore multiple career paths from consulting and marketing to entrepreneurial opportunities in food and ag tourism,” explains Hansen.

The students in the course are an eclectic mix of traditional students exploring career options to non-traditional students who have experience farming crops such as avocados, mangoes and lychee.

The class also has Native Hawaiian students who want to embrace cultural tourism through food and heritage plants.

“Towards that end we will have a screening on March 6 of the acclaimed film Sons of Hālawa, about a family on Molokai who revitalized their relations with culture and land through a sustainable tourism enterprise,” says Hansen.

AG 194 Agricultural and Food Tourism

Course description:

The course provides an overview of the rapidly growing international fields of agritourism and food tourism from interdisciplinary academic approaches. With tourism as a major economic driver in many areas of the world, the exploration of markets for local and global tourism is paramount, especially those that intersect with popular food movements such as “farm to table,” “locavore,” “nose to tail,” street food tours, and locally HRC (Hawai‘i Regional Cuisine).

Sustainability, local culture and the promotion of self, society and planet are notable themes and marketing strategies. We will survey the global scope and local potential of these phenomena and examine trends, media influences, markets and marketing, logistics and regulations, value added product development, stakeholders, innovative partnerships and employment opportunities.

Specific areas covered include farm tours, food festivals, food trucks, farmers’ markets and agritourism associations.

See syllabus (PDF).

Brooke Hansen

Hansen is an anthropologist with specialties in food, tourism, sustainability, integrative health, indigenous studies and experiential learning.

“I have been teaching edutourism and service learning on the Big Island since 1999 with a focus on kānaka maoli culture and revitalization,” she says.

Those classes were offered during winter intersession at Ithaca College, where she taught for 18 years before relocating to Hawai‘i last year to spend full time on research and revitalization efforts with local communities.

At UH Hilo, she currently serves on the Sustainability Committee and the Blue Zones Committee and holds two teaching posts: affiliate associate professor in the Department of Anthropology and lecturer in the College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management.

 

About the author of this story: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.

Other stories in this series on new courses:

New astronomy course at UH Hilo: Maunakea as a contemporary place of contrasting world views

New microbiology course at UH Hilo gives students holistic view of the environment

New course prepares fourth-year pharmacy students for comprehensive exam

Jan 062017
 

The busiest dining room on the UH Hilo campus is being transformed with new decor and furniture to encourage students to gather, lounge, study, eat, enjoy the surrounding gardens and make themselves at home.

By Susan Enright.

Beautiful custom made counters and stools were installed at the Campus Center Dining Room over winter break. Christian Kanani, a local wood craftsman created the rustic window bar counter tops, and Hawai‘i Community College carpentry students did the installation Dec. 27. Photos courtesy of the Office of Administrative Affairs, click to enlarge.

Over winter break, the Campus Center Dining Room at the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo underwent the second phase of a three-phase Refresh Project. The project aims to create a comfy-cozy space for students to do more than just scarf down a meal—with decor that blends rustic with modern, three main sections of the large dining room are being transformed into a bright and cheerful café, an area to lounge and study or gather with friends, and sit-down counters that run the length of the wall of windows overlooking the gardens.

“The overall goal for this refresh project is to provide a vibrant, inviting gathering place for students,” says Brenda Hamane, director of special projects at the UH Hilo Office of Administrative Affairs. “This initiative is part of UH Hilo’s strategic plan, and supported by Chancellor Straney and Vice Chancellor for Administrative Affairs Marcia Sakai to create the first of many gathering places for students.”

The Refresh Project work in the dining room is being done over three phases to avoid disruption to food service operations—Phase I happened last summer, Phase II has just been completed this winter break, and Phase III will complete the project this coming spring break.

Last summer, rustic looking flooring was installed. At the start of the spring semester next week, students will find more work was done over winter break that enhances the new organic look—rustic counters now run the length of the wall of windows complete with bar stools and a view of the gardens, renovated planters are now encased in reclaimed wood, and for contrast, splashes of bright green accent are on some walls and trim.

The majority of the work over break was done by a UH Hilo Auxiliary Services crew under the direction of Kolin Kettleson, auxiliary director, and students from the carpentry program at Hawai‘i Community College under the direction of instructors Gene Harada and Darryl Vierra.

Phase I, summer 2016: A good foundation

During Phase I of the work, which happened over two weeks during the summer of 2016, approximately 6,000 square feet of rustic-looking vinyl flooring was installed in the Campus Center Dining Room. The work was done by students in the Hawai‘i CC carpentry program under the direction of their instructor Harada.

 

In addition to the flooring installation, staff from the UH Hilo Office of Technology Services and Support installed additional WiFi access points to improve WiFi capability, and UH Hilo Auxiliary Services replaced existing lights with LED lights, installed additional electrical outlets for electronic devices, and worked on much needed cosmetics such as hiding exposed wires in conduits, relocating the audio-visual cabinet, and painting conduits.

Phase II, winter break 2016: Adding to the rustic charm

Work during this winter break was fast and efficient—existing planter boxes were refurbished with reclaimed pallet wood. Staff from Auxiliary Services collected discarded pallets throughout UH Hilo campus and the Pana‘ewa Farm Laboratory for this project. It was a great opportunity for Hawai‘i CC carpentry program students to learn how to refurbish existing furniture with reclaimed wood. The students completed 15 planter boxes within three days. This sustainability-minded design for the existing planter boxes is on-trend, and enhances the overall new rustic look at the Campus Center Dining Room.

Students from the Hawai‘i Community College carpentry program work on refurbishing a dining room planter with reclaimed wood, Dec. 20, 2016.

Wooden counters for eating were also installed along the wall of windows in the dining room facing the gardens and Library Lanai. Christian Kanani, a local wood craftsman created the rustic window bar counter tops, and the Hawai‘i CC carpentry students did the installation. Rustic bar stools add a finishing touch to the counters.

Students from the Hawai‘i CC carpentry program install custom wooden counters overlooking the gardens outside the UH Hilo Campus Center, Dec. 27, 2016.

 

A fresh coat of paint was put on all walls and the lower ceiling, and there are now bright chartreuse green accent walls and trim to add a pop of color to tie in with the new furniture that will arrive during the next phase of the project, scheduled for March during spring break.

Bright chartreuse green accent walls and trim now add a pop of color to the room. Additional electric outlets have also been added to all walls throughout the entire dining room.

Additional wall outlets for electronic devices were also installed over break along all walls in preparation for the new, modern furniture arrival during Phase III.

Phase III, spring break 2017: Rustic meets modern

The final phase, to be done in March over spring break, will bring the addition of new modern furniture, Hawaiian art and signage on the accent wall, and finishing touches such as wheat grass and lavender plants for the refurbished planter boxes.

The above is a sample photo of the style of chairs that will be arriving in March. There will be varying heights of tables and chairs (café height, regular and counter height), with pops of color to brighten the dining room area. Lime green and calypso (shown above) are the colors selected. A majority of the tables will be square and regular height, with a few round cafe height tables for two interspersed within the dining room.

New café style tables and chairs and new comfortable lounge chairs will contribute greatly to the overall ambiance.

Model depicted using big lounge chair and skate table. The colors of the furniture for the Campus Center Dining Room will be lime green and bright blue.

The furniture will add pops of color similar to the accent colors on the walls, their bright modern lines adding contrast to the overall rustic look.

Hamane says a “comfy cozy” lounge area is planned for the back area of the dining room, near the bookstore entrance. The colors will be lime green and bright blue for furniture named the Big Lounge, Half Lounge, Round Ottoman, C-shaped Personal Table, and Skate Personal Table.

This furniture can be easily moved around the lounge area, meaning students can configure chairs and tables as they wish to create gathering areas or personal study spaces. For example, students can use the c-shaped or skate personal tables to study solo, use their laptop or eat; the lounges and ottomans can be pulled together for groups. The tables are sized perfectly to use with the furniture.

Model depicted using c-table and half lounge chair.

“It’s important for students to know that this is their gathering place, so they can configure the new furniture to create their own gathering space,” says Hamane. “The furniture was selected with this in mind.”

The designers of the Refresh Project also ensured that the majority of tables—40 of the 70 tables—are ADA accessible, and each area—lounge, window bar counter, and café—will have ADA accessible tables.

Hamane will be meeting with Larry Kimura, associate professor of Hawaiian language and Hawaiian studies  at the College of Hawaiian Language, later this month to collaborate on artwork for the green accent wall. She says she’d like to include a Hawaiian phrase on the wall that conveys to students that this is their gathering space.

“Chancellor Straney and Vice Chancellor Marcia Sakai’s vision is to create this gathering place for all students to come together and feel welcome and invited to reconfigure tables and chairs to create a comfortable college hangout space for all to enjoy,” Hamane explains.

A grand opening celebration for students is planned after the Refresh Project is completed over spring break.

 

About the author of this story: Susan Enright is a public information specialist in the Office of the Chancellor. She received her bachelor of arts in English and certificate in women’s studies from UH Hilo.

-UH Hilo Stories.