The Hawaii-Pacific Foundation, an organization supporting economic, social, and cultural endeavors in the Native Hawaiian community, recently made gifts totaling $28,000 to help support and expand UH West Oʻahu’s Educational Pathways programs.
Representatives from the foundation visited UH West Oʻahu in March to listen to a presentation by Waiʻanae High School students helped by prior gifts during a meeting with Chancellor Maenette Benham. The Hawaii Pacific Foundation in December contributed $25,000 to the campus’ Hawaiʻi Pacific Education Pathways Fund and made an additional donation of $3,000 during its recent visit.
Dr. Camille Hampton, head of UH West Oʻahu’s Educational Pathway program, said the contribution is welcomed and will help fund the program, which takes a grow-your-own approach to solving a nagging teacher shortage in Leeward Oʻahu and the Waiʻanae Coast. The pathway program’s goals include increasing the number of students from West Oʻahu entering the field of education, expanding the number of students at UH West Oʻahu pursuing a teaching degree, and increasing the number of UH West Oʻahu graduates teaching at area schools.
“Funds from the gift will be used to support and expand a much needed, grow-your-own education pathway program at Waiʻanae, Kapolei, and Campbell high schools where many students are of Hawaiian or part-Hawaiian ancestry,” Hampton said in an email.
“Funding will be used to implement early college courses, mentoring, student support services, and work-based learning components in order to provide high school students with experiences that promote a strong understanding and value for the noble profession of teaching.”
Also present at the meeting with The Hawaii-Pacific Foundation for Soft Power Solutions, Inc. were Waiʻanae High School students Jada Jones, Ajholie Tafiti, and Tatiana Hamilton, who gave short presentations. The foundation was established by retired Hawaiʻi Air National Guard Brig. Gen. Edwin A. “Skip” Vincent. The foundation’s mission is to support education services to the Hawaiian community and provide relief and support to programs supporting Hawaiian communities.
The meeting between the foundation and the UH West Oʻahu campus was facilitated by the University of Hawaiʻi Foundation. Anyone interested in contributing to the Hawaiʻi Pacific Education Pathways Fund should contact C. Kent Coarsey, UH Foundation director of development and alumni engagement for UH West Oʻahu.