Welina Mai Kākou!

Welcome to the Pacific Internship Programs for Exploring Science (PIPES) website!

The Pacific Internship Programs for Exploring Science (PIPES) is a university level project-based internship program housed within the Office of Research at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo. PIPES is committed to increasing the recruitment and retention of local students, especially those of Native Hawaiian ancestry, into fields of study, and ultimately careers, related to the natural resources of Hawaiʻi and the Pacific region.

See more information on PIPES programs.

We were extremely humbled by this award and the alumni who presented us with lei and love at the 2019 Hawaii Conservation Conference in July 2019. The lei created and presented were given as symbols of the program characteristics and this manaʻo is woven across our program:

  1. Koaiʻa – form symbolic relationships, they fix nitrogen, making nutrients available to support growth of other plant species. We can also think of them as ko’a iʻa. A place for fish (interns) to find refuge, to feed, and to grow.
  2. ʻAʻaliʻi – takes on any challenge and does not waiver, does not backdown. ʻAʻa and liʻi, they fostered our little roots, that have since grown deeper and deeper.
  3. KukuiPIPES has served as a beacon for many of us, a bright spot on the horizon showing us the path forward to a better ‘āina and a better self. The program, like kukui has thrived in spaces where many others haven’t, growing that space and cultivating it to become abundant. This cultivation has occurred both within each intern personally as well as the many organizations and landscapes their reach has touched.
  4. Lāʻī – versatile and has many functions. This lei is symbolic of the versatility that PIPES has afforded its participants through the diverse experiences that we have gained. To hilo lāʻī is to make it stronger than any one leaf on its own, and is symbolic of our collective strength that is critical to our practice of aloha ‘āina.
  5. Kupukupu – is the first growth on a new landscape, creates fertility for new life.
  6. Palaʻā/pāʻū o palaʻe- has nurturing characteristics like a mama bear. Creating the gentle mat that welcomes the growth of others.
  7. Pohinahina – for the reflections of intern to mentor, mentor to intern.
  8. Uala – represents the nurturing that PIPES has provided to numerous cohorts of Hawaiian, kamaʻaiana and visiting students, rooting us in place, the growth spreads while the hua ripens.
  9. Naupaka – like us, spreading far and wide, resilient as it is preserved in the salt of our kūpuna.

(Want to explore these words more deeply? wehewehe.org is a great resource!)

PIPES staff receiving award

PIPES staff at the HCA awards ceremony