Wailau is a series of themed storytelling events that build connections between members of our campus and wider community that go deeper than the roles we hold and honor our complex, fragile, fascinating and brave selves. Each event will explore a different theme and we seek to showcase five storytellers - a UH faculty member, UH staff member, UH student, UH alum, and a community member.
What's up next?
Join us at our next Wailau event, planned for January 12, 2024. Five brave storytellers will share their personal stories related to the theme of "Why not?"
Has anyone ever dared you to do something, and you thought... Why not?
Have you ever had a crazy idea and thought... Why not?
Has someone invited you to do something you weren't sure you were qualified for, but you thought... Why not?
If You have a great story to share, visit our "Submit A Story" page! Really, why not?
Meet the 2023-2024 Wailau Hosts
UH Hilo students play a major role in staging Wailau, from operating lights, sound and cameras, to participating as hosts and storytellers. A student committee determines Wailau themes, reviews story submissions and selects storytellers.
Welcome to our new student hosts for 2023-2024: Kaylee and Sophia, who will help to build community and understanding through Wailau!
Kaylee Wright is a Freshman at UH Hilo. Although she is taking up and exploring research in business related fields, she has been passionate about stories and acting since she was a young girl. Her most notable Performing Arts achievement was being able to perform in her school's rock opera hōʻike at the 2023 American High School Theatre Festival held in Edinburgh, Scotland. Along with her Kamehameha Schools castmates, she was able to bring the story of Paiʻea Kamehameha to the United Kingdom with singing, dancing, and lots of sparkly clothing. While this was exciting, it was far from her favorite role. That honor would have to go to the character of Michael Banks, whom she played in her school's rendition of Mary Poppins during her senior year of high school. Although not pursuing it professionally, Kaylee wishes to become as engaged as she can with theatre, for she believes she owes it everything for forming her into the person who she is today.
Sophia Potter is a kinesiology major here at UH Hilo. She has always been athletic and pursued many sports. She has also practiced many forms of art. She loves hiking and nature, and her favorite activity is the beach. She plans to travel a lot in the future because she wants to spend her life exploring!
Past Wailau Events
- February 2021 Wailau Theme: The Importance of Communication in Love
- April 2021 Wailau Theme: A Just World
- Fall 2021 Wailau Theme: Getting From Point A to Point B
- Spring 2022 Wailau Theme: Tales of Misunderstanding
- Fall 2022 Wailau Theme: New Beginnings
- Spring 2023 Wailau Theme: Ripples
Types of Storytellers
UH faculty member
UH staff member
Please contact Justina Mattos with questions about speaking, volunteering or sponsoring Wailau.