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Upcoming Events

History Writing Awards and Okihiro & Henriquez Award

The History Department is excited to announce this year’s call for submissions for the History Student Writing Awards and the Okihiro & Henriquez Award.

History Writing Awards All History Majors and Minors may submit a completed, 12 to 20 page research paper (properly formatted), from Sp21, F21 or Sp22, in any focus area: East Asian, European, Hawaiian, Pacific, U.S., or World history. Only one award will be given out in each category for a $100 prize per category. Students will not be awarded more than one category prize per academic year, but you may submit for consideration in more than one focus area. All submissions are due to Prof. Jeff Smith by 5pm Friday, April 22nd – electronic submissions only please and denote which category you are submitting for.

Gary Y. Okihiro & Marina A. Henriquez Award From a pool of qualified applicants, the award will be given to a deserving student who, in the opinion of the selection committee, has made significant contributions toward Hawaiian history and culture in the community (outside the university campus). History Majors and Minors are eligible for this $500 award. Please note the award may be given to one student or shared among deserving applicants. To apply, please fill out this Google Form by Friday, April 22nd.

All winners will be announced at the History Senior Symposium. Good luck, historians!

Black History Month

The History Department is proud to be a co-sponsor of the exhibit and events honoring Black History Month at UH Hilo this February. The theme for Black History Month 2022 focuses on the importance of black health & wellness, and acknowledges the legacy of black scholars, medical practitioners in western medicine, and other ways of knowing throughout the African Diaspora. In celebration of Black History Month, the Black History Month Planning Committee at UH Hilo has put together the following:

Library Exhibit:

Drop by the UH Hilo Mookini Library and check out the Black History Monthʻs newly installed exhibit featuring Alice Ball. A graduate of the University of Hawaii with an M.S. in chemistry, Ball developed the first successful treatment for Hansen’s disease. Tragically dying at 24, Ball did not live long enough to see the impact of her discovery nor receive the credit she desired.

Film Presentations:

UH Hilo students are welcomed to attend the Black History Month film presentations followed by discussions being hosted on Wednesdays in UCB 100 at 6:00pm. Here are the films: - The Ball Method on February 9th - The Color of Medicine on February 16th - The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks on February 23rd

Please see the UH Hilo Black History Month website for more information.

Hilo Story Map

Hilo Story Map In partnership with the Hawaiʻi Historic Foundation, students from two different history classes, instructed by Professor Kerri Inglis, participated in researching and putting together the Hilo Story Map which launched on December 20, 2021. The launch was presented by a panel featuring Senior Archaeologist Lokelani Brandt of ASM Affiliates, Professor Kerri Inglis, and students from the University of Hawaiʻi at Hiloʻs History Department. This story map includes various components such as: the area’s history, historic and contemporary images, cultural practices and traditions, moʻolelo (stories), maps, and descriptions. Learn more about the Hilo Story Map and find out more about the process of itʻs creation.

University Students Welcomes Ka Leo Wai

Ka Wai Leo During the Fall 2021 semester, students from Professor Kerri A. Inglisʻs HIST 497 class, entitled Hoʻonaʻauao, had the honor of welcoming and hosting Waiākea High School Students of "Ka Leo Wai." During their time together, students of Hoʻonaʻauao had the oppurtunity to provide Waiākea students with a campus-wide tour that began at UH Hiloʻs Student Services Center and ended at the Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani, the Language of Hawaiian College. Students of Hoʻonaʻauao also shared personal college experiences and words of advice with Waiākeaʻs students in an effort to encourage them to pursue a higher education.

Dr. Mikkelson Retirement

Douglas Mikkelson After 29 years of teaching and service to the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, Professor of European History Douglas K. Mikkelson announced his retirement effective the end of the Spring 2022 semester. Known for his encyclopedic knowledge and passion for teaching history, Mikkelson’s classroom debates were a student favorite. From Assistant Professor to full Professor, from Department Chair to Chair of the Faculty Senate, over the past three decades Mikkelson’s legacy of service to the university, department, and his students is legendary. While his energy, camaraderie, and institutional wisdom will surely be missed, the History Department wishes Professor Mikkelson all the best.

Dr. Smith featured on Podcast

Along with his coauthor and military historian Dr. Michael Doidge, Associate Professor Jeffrey Allen Smith were the featured guests on episode 39 of the Military Times’ podcast “Seeking the Military Suicide Solution” on October 15, 2020. Hosted by Duane France Ph.D. and Shauna Springer Ph.D., the podcast aims to move beyond awareness to identify actionable strategies that can impact the rising suicide rate among service members, veterans, and their families.

Military Times podcast logo

Department of Defense Presentation

DoD Emblem On February 18, 2020, Associate Professor Jeffery Allen Smith became the first historian to ever address the U.S. Department of Defense’s Military-to-Civilian Transition Research Forum. Smith’s invited presentation was entitled, “A Historical Examination of Active-Duty U.S. Army Suicide Rates from 1819-2018” and built upon his previous research on the history of mental health and suicide in the U.S. military.

Washington Post OP-Ed

the Washington Post Emblem To further contextualize their JAMA title for a broader audience, on January 17, 2020, The Washington Post published an op-ed in their Made by History series entitled “Can historical analysis help reduce military deaths by suicide?” authored by Associate Professor Jeffrey Allen Smith, undergraduate History major Ryan Hanoa, and UH Hilo Psychology Professor B. Christopher Frueh.

Awards and Contratulations

Congratulations to our Spring 2021 Graduates

2021 Student Writing Awards

Congratulations to our Fall 2020 Graduates

Congratulations to our Spring 2020 Graduates


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