The Office of University Relations is the communications arm of the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo.
University Relations consists of various departments, which all provide its own specialized communications services and duties.
Develops and directs community outreach programs, represents the University at various functions, and disseminates information to the public and community groups to promote the image and involvement of the University.
- See the 2022-2023 UH Hilo Speakers’ Bureau list of available speakers and topics.
The Office of Media Relations fulfills a critical function in the public relations effort at UH Hilo, serving as the hub and primary point of contact for all journalists and media representatives. Media Relations assists the University community with publicizing newsworthy events, as well as manage select print and online publications and programs such as the UH Hilo Directory and Haʻilono o UH Hilo. See the Media Relations Policy and Procedures and our Guidelines for Filming and Photography at the University of Hawaiʻi.
Please submit a UH Hilo Communications Request for Assistance form for requests for various communications projects. You must be logged in to your Google@UH account (such as for UH email) to submit the form. A model release form should be completed for all subjects featured in photography and video requests. The UH Hilo Communication Outlets is provided to inform faculty and staff of the various communication options available on campus concerning mass emails.
The Office of Institutional Marketing is responsible for leading the development and execution of UH Hilo's strategic marketing plan and is also tasked with unifying campus units under one cohesive brand management policy. Along with the consultation of UH Hilo's Marketing and Social Media Advisory Group, the office engages in print and digital campaigns designed to enhance public awareness and engagement.
The Institutional Marketing office manages and plans print advertising for UH Hilo statewide through UH Hilo's Ka Nupepa - a full-page, color newspaper ad featuring the colleges and departments on campus, along with the University Town Tab insert appearing in the Hawai‘i Tribune-Herald and West Hawai‘i Today. Ads for magazines, various publications and signage are also handled by this office as well.
Institutional Marketing actively manages and posts on UH Hilo's social media platforms (including Facebook, Instagram and YouTube), and is responsible for social media policy and training. The office also oversees the marketing and branding aspects of UH Hilo's website. Video production for television and social media, radio ads, as well as digital website ads, are all generated and distributed to various media outlets through this office.
The Vulcan V.I.B.E. (Vulcans Involved By Engagement) program was created by Institutional Marketing to tell the stories of our UH Hilo ‘ohana. An integral part of our brand, the Vulcan V.I.B.E. captures the unique journeys and personal stories of our students, faculty, staff and alumni. Referrals are welcome and accepted year-round, with postings occurring during the academic year on UH Hilo's Instagram, Facebook and website.
UH Hilo's brand – “Your Journey is our Focus” (ʻO kāu huakaʻi ko mākou kuleana) and “Connecting Learning, Life and Aloha,” (ʻO ka ʻimi naʻauao, ke ola a me ke aloha kā kākou e huliāmahi ai), was created entirely in-house through the collaboration of faculty, staff, students and alumni. It speaks to UH Hilo’s values and strengths, with the student at the piko or center of its message.
Campus units can refer to the UH Hilo Brand Guide for proper brand implementation including colors, fonts and design elements, while the Digital Toolkit serves as a resource for email signatures, PowerPoint slide templates and Zoom backgrounds.
The UH Hilo Brand Policy is designed to manage and protect the image, logos and visual identity of the University. The campuswide policy applies to all staff, faculty, students and campus units, as well as outside vendors and organizations. All printed and digital media for an external audience are included in this policy with the exception of social media posts due to the immediacy of communication required. The University reserves the right to request revisions to posts as necessary. Contact Nyssa Kushi, Director of Institutional Marketing at (808) 932-7668 or firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions.
Marketing and Social Media Advisory Group
The Marketing and Social Media Advisory Group (MSMAG) is organized and facilitated by the Director of Institutional Marketing. The group consists of the college deans, a Faculty Congress member, a UHHSA representative, a community member, and various departments campuswide, with input from Strategic Planning. Overall, 27 campus units or organizations are represented that provide UH Hilo’s Institutional Marketing Office with collaborative guidance.
Community Ambassador Program
The Community Ambassador Program offers faculty, staff and students the opportunity to represent UH Hilo at various on and off-campus events. Ambassadors are volunteers who assist the Office of Admissions and other campus units at events designed to educate and invite the public to engage with our campus. Examples of events include the Merrie Monarch Festival, campus tours and high school visits. Community Ambassadors serve for one academic year, and applications are accepted on an ongoing basis via the online form. For more information, contact the Office of Institutional Marketing at email@example.com or the Office at Admissions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Alyson Kakugawa-Leong , Interim Director, University Relations, Media Relations Director
- Nyssa Kushi , Director of Institutional Marketing
- Caroline Lorenzo , Intermin Secretary
- Darin Igawa , Director, Graphics Services, Graphic Artist
- Tanya Ibarra , Graphic Designer,
- Kelcie Valbuena , Administrative and Support Specialist
- Sunny “Kamakalōliʻi” Walker , Director, Web Services; Webmaster
- Brennan Low Webmaster, IT Specialist