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UH Hilo community is invited to “Brown Bag with Bonnie,” an informal gathering, Nov. 19

Campus community is invited to a gathering with University of Hawai‘i at Hilo Chancellor Bonnie. D. Irwin. “Brown Bag with Bonnie” will be held on Tuesday, November 19, 2019, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Hale‘ōlelo, room 112, College of Hawaiian Language. Bring a brown bag lunch for this informal talk-story gathering.

Flyer with photo of Bonnie Irwon and the building where the mtg will be held. Words: Join Chancellor Bonnie D. Irwin, Bring your lunch for an informal "talk story" gathering at Haleʻōlelo. Brown Bag with Bonnie. Tuesday, November 19, 2019, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Haleʻōlelo, Room 112. Includes round red seal/logo of UH Hilo.

For more information, call the Office of University Relations.

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Chancellor’s Monthly Column, Nov. 2019: About our responsibility to the community

By Bonnie D. Irwin

Bonnie D. Irwin
Bonnie D. Irwin

Our island recently lost a true pillar of the community with the passing of Barry Taniguchi. Our island and state mourn with Barry’s ‘ohana as we honor his extraordinary dedication to our island’s communities and to the health and well-being of our island’s people.

Barry’s legacy is an inspiration to us all to persist in our pursuit of building and strengthening our island communities for the benefit of all. After attending his funeral and hearing all the moving eulogies, I came away with a profound sense of responsibility to the community, thinking about how we all must step up to fill the void he’s left behind; I felt inspired to help move the community forward.

So here I would like to communicate some of the ways the UH Hilo ‘ohana is serving our community, driven by the goal of bettering this place in which we are privileged to live. I’ll also share some thoughts about how I envision expanding and strengthening our outreach into the future.

Economic development

Through consultation with community leaders throughout the region, UH Hilo adjusts and develops academic programs to meet workforce needs. We’ve seen this in recently established baccalaureate programs in accounting and environmental science, graduate programs in conservation biology and heritage management, and doctoral programs in nursing practice and Hawaiian and Indigenous language and culture revitalization. Graduates from these programs are professionals woven into the fabric of our communities, doing the work that improves the quality of life for everyone.

When talking about regional economic development, it’s important to note the important work of our business college alumni. Graduates from the College of Business and Economics are managers, financial advisers, accountants, bankers, entrepreneurs, and business professionals who help our local citizens with their personal and professional business needs.

Looking ahead, programs in the planning stage are baccalaureate degrees in the emerging fields of aeronautical science and data science. In speaking with our nursing and pharmacy faculty, I have learned of our work in integrated health care and rural health, where health professionals working in teams are needed to provide the best level of service. We are also assembling a group on campus to start financial literacy programming in order to help our students and their families not only navigate the costs of college, but also prepare to be fiscally responsible citizens.

I look forward to working with Hawai‘i Community College Chancellor Rachel Solemsaas and other regional leaders to determine how best our institutions can continue to prepare a workforce for the future.

Regional sustainability

Between our campus composting program, energy reduction efforts, and agriculture and science programs, UH Hilo is modeling sustainable practices and continually looking to improve these practices. We are doing our part in helping our island home become more self-sufficient, utilizing the expertise of our faculty and staff, and inspiring our students to find new ways of stewarding our environment for future generations.

As part of our strategy to implement the UH System Sustainability Policy, we’re looking to increase courses that integrate sustainability through ‘āina- and culture-based curricula and activities such as service-learning and undergraduate research. Our students benefit greatly from a learning environment that speaks to our island culture and is infused with local languages, protocols, values, wisdoms, expertise, and ways of knowing about sustainability.

P-20 education

Education is our core business, of course, and we partner with local schools in numerous ways. ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center is inspiring thousands of island keiki to pursue science through the lens of Hawaiian culture. I had the opportunity to visit Pūnana Leo o Hilo and Ke Kula ‘O Nāwahīokalani‘ōpu to see our language revitalization efforts in action in Hawaiian immersion schools. I have learned about the various fitness and athletics activities, from sports clinics staffed by our student athletes to the children’s swim program that our campus recreation department hosts every summer. And, of course, our School of Education continues to provide training and continuing education for local teachers.

Civic education

I often say that if we cannot have respectful conversations about controversial issues on a university campus, it probably won’t happen anywhere. We not only model how to do this, but teach our students the value of respect and empathy for others. We partner with local professionals in this work, and this is an area upon which we can build, especially at a time when our country and state are dealing with weighty issues about which there are many perspectives. I hope to expand these efforts to encompass community dialogues.

I look forward to learning more about the needs of our communities, island, state and region, and doing all I can to position and adapt UH Hilo to help bring an exciting and bright future to all. Mahalo for all your support.

Aloha,

Bonnie Irwin

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UH Foundation Fall Calling Campaign is underway

Chancellor Irwin with group of students pose for photo.
Meeting with the student fundraisers to share information about various programs and activities at UH Hilo, Oct. 21, 2019, UH Foundation, Honolulu.

Aloha UH Hilo Faculty and Staff,

The annual UH Foundation Fall Calling Campaign has begun this month. I personally met with the student fundraisers to share information about our various programs and activities here at UH Hilo. I would like to take this opportunity to let you know that you may receive a call from our UH Foundation students who will begin the call by confirming or asking to update your contact information and then transition to ask for support for our campus initiatives. I encourage you to consider donating and supporting UH Hilo. Should you have any questions, please call Dale Hagadone at the Foundation: (808) 956-7357.

Mahalo,
Bonnie D. Irwin
Chancellor

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For UH Hilo Students: Mid-Semester Chancellor Check-in, Oct. 23

UH Hilo Students: How are you doing? Have any questions? Suggestions? Ideas? Join fellow students in this open session gathering with Chancellor Bonnie Irwin sponsored by The UH Hilo Student Association.

Flyer with Bonnie Irwin photo and words: UHHSA Proudly Supports... A Mid-Semester Chancellor Check-in, Open Session Only for UH Hilo Students, Open Question and Answers, Oct. 23, 2019, @UCB127, noon to 1:00 p.m. Refreshments to be provided. For disability accommodations contact Alyson Kakugawa-Leong at alyson@hawaii.edu, (808)932-7339 or (808)932-7002 (TTY)

A Mid-Semester Chancellor Check-in for University of Hawai‘i at Hilo students will be held on Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2019, from noon to 1:00 p.m. at University Classroom Building, room 127.

Join Chancellor Bonnie Irwin for a mid-semester check. How are you doing? Have any questions? Suggestions? Ideas? Join fellow students in this open session gathering sponsored by The UH Hilo Student Association. Refreshments provided.

This is a UH Hilo student-only event.

For more information, contact Alyson Kakugawa-Leong.

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Annual Hawai‘i Island United Way general campaign now underway

This is the time of year that we, as a university, come together to strengthen our community by pledging during the annual United Way General Campaign.

Logo:

Aloha UH Hilo ‘Ohana,

For more than 50 years, Hawai‘i Island United Way, Inc. (HIUW) has been the cornerstone of our island’s health and human service community. Thanks to your annual monetary donation, HIUW is able to help those less fortunate or down on their luck in our community, nurture individuals and families, identify specific needs and fill them, and help build a safer and healthier community.

This is the time of year that we as a university come together to strengthen our community by pledging during the annual United Way General Campaign. Now, more than ever, the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo ‘ohana can support to keep these life-changing programs alive on Hawai‘i Island. See how our response to past campaigns has positively impacted the services and resources at HIUW.org. Educational, financial, and health benefits are extended to our families, friends and students through these agencies.

Please consider donating or pledging your support today! Pledge application forms were distributed to all campus units. Payroll deductions make it easy to give, and all donations make a difference here on Hawai‘i Island. Send your pledge form with your cash, check, credit card number or payroll deduction directly to Lei Kapono, Office of the Chancellor, by November 15, 2019. Additional forms are available.

Pūpūkahi I Holumua – Unite to Move Forward. Join in supporting diverse programs that are critical to the well-being of our communities.

Bonnie D. Irwin
Chancellor

D. Lei Kapono
Interim Assistant to the Chancellor and UH Hilo HIUW Coordinator

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