Ka Haka ʻUla O Keʻelikōlani College of Hawaiian Language Graduate Programs

This is content from the Catalog 2019–2020 back issue. Please visit the current catalog for current information.

Graduate Programs Coordinator: Scott Saft , Ph.D.
Email: saft@hawaii.edu

Website: www.olelo.hawaii.edu/khuok/mhhmulipuka.php


Associate Professors:

Assistant Professor:

Vision and Mission of the College

ʻO ka ʻōlelo ke kaʻā o ka mauli.
Language is the fiber that binds us to our cultural identity.

Consistent with the official status of the Hawaiian language in the state constitution, the Hawaiʻi state legislature in 1997 mandated the establishment of a college at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, with classes and staff meetings to be conducted through the Hawaiian language. Established by the University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents in 1998, UH Hilo’s College of Hawaiian Language, Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani, was named in honor of Ruth Keʻelikōlani Keanolani Kanāhoahoa, the nineteenth century high chiefess known for her strong advocacy of Hawaiian language and culture.

The mission of the college is first to seek the revitalization of the Hawaiian language and culture, endangered by the dominance of Western culture in the twentieth century, so that both language and culture once again become commonplace in both educational and non-educational contexts in Hawaiʻi. Secondly, the college seeks to aid other indigenous peoples to revitalize their own endangered languages and cultures. Linguistics, the scientific study of human language, is central to the Ph.D. program of the college and informs its work in all other areas as well.

The college is still small and its programs are not fully established. The M.A. program in Hawaiian Language and Literature was initiated in 1998, shortly after the college was established. The Kahuawaiola Hawaiian and Indigenous Teacher Education Program to train Hawaiian speaking teachers for Hawaiian medium schools was initiated in 1999. Two additional graduate programs were later initiated, the Ph.D. in Hawaiian and Indigenous Language and Culture Revitalization in 2006, and the M.A. in Indigenous Language and Culture Education in 2007. For now, the college’s ability to train students whose indigenous language is other than Hawaiian is limited to the Ph.D. program. The M.A. program in Indigenous Language and Culture Education currently offers only a Plan B practicing track, which requires students to be fluent in Hawaiian language. In the future, when the faculty is larger, the college intends to open a monitoring indigenous education track that will be open to students focusing on other indigenous languages. The college will also open the certificate program in indigenous language and culture revitalization, which aims to give course work to students who have already obtained a bachelor’s degree in order to help prepare them for work as educators, or for entering one of the college’s graduate programs.