The Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawaiʻi–West Oʻahu awarded two students the inaugural Roy and Hilda Takeyama Foundation Scholarship at UH West Oʻahu.
Mavric Agustin-Carino and Mikaela Briones are recipients of the first-ever full scholarship in the ACM program at UH West O‘ahu. The scholarship is among other prestigious scholarships — such as the UH West Oʻahu Chancellor Scholarship and the University of Hawaiʻi Regents Scholarship — awarded to UH West Oʻahu students.
The scholarship is part of a $1 million commitment made in 2015 by the Roy and Hilda Takeyama Foundation to support and advance the mission and priorities of the ACM program at UH West O’ahu. The gift has been used to support ACM students with tuition, books, internships, and state-of-the-art equipment for the Creative Media facility, which is set to hold classes starting this fall semester.
Roy and Hilda Takeyama’s children, son and foundation trustee David Takeyama, and daughter and UH Regent Jan Sullivan, said their late father would have been overjoyed with the news of the two scholarship recipients.
“Our father, Roy Takeyama, who started the foundation, was an early donor of the ACM program and its vision to broaden and diversify Hawaiʻi’s economy,” David Takeyama said. “As we work through this pandemic, the importance of those early insights are highlighted today and if he were still alive today, he would be overwhelmed with joy to see that these promising two students have the opportunity to make a real change in Hawaiʻi’s future.”
About the scholarship
The Roy and Hilda Takeyama Foundation Scholarship provides multi-year assistance to students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Creative Media at UH West Oʻahu.
Full-time undergraduate students who are Hawai‘i residents are eligible, with awards going to a student transferring from a UH community college from a recognized Academy for Creative Media System supported program (two years of full tuition) and to an early college pathway graduate from the Academy for Creative Media – UH West O‘ahu, currently Waiʻanae, Waipahu, Campbell or Kapolei high schools (four years of full tuition).
“This is the first scholarship I have ever received and I consider this to be one of my greatest personal achievements,” said Agustin-Carino, who transferred from Leeward Community College, where he received an Associate in Science degree in Digital Media.
Briones is a 2020 graduate of Waiʻanae High School, where she was part of the school’s Seariders Productions program.
“I am so grateful to have been awarded this scholarship, especially because I didn’t think I would get it,” Briones said. “It was such a huge surprise and I am forever grateful to those who helped me get to where I am now.”
Agustin-Carino and Briones will each also receive an additional $1,000 annually to support their studies and enhance their experiences at UH West Oʻahu.
ʻMotivated, now more than ever’
Agustin-Carino, 32, formerly of Waipahu and now a resident of ʻEwa Beach, is a second-career student who went from working in the construction trade to pursuing Media and Design in ACM.
Agustin-Carino said the scholarship will allow him to focus more on his academic studies and take more time off of work to focus his energy on applying for internships (ideally on the mainland when it is safe) and creating and building his portfolio.
In his free time, Agustin-Carino enjoys creating characters inspired by popular 1990s characters from, for example, the Final Fantasy series and The Legend of Zelda.
“Animated movies and video games were a very big part of my childhood and it continues to inspire me the more I do projects for my classes and being immersed in a classroom with my peers and my professors,” he said.
Agustin-Carino said earning a bachelor’s degree in the Creative Media program will give him more opportunities in the video game industry, and he ultimately wants to create art in an effort to design a wonderful gaming experience for all ages.
“I am motivated, now more than ever, to excel in my work and make my family and loved ones proud,” Agustin-Carino said.
‘Opens up more doors for me’
Waiʻanae resident Briones, 18, said the significance this scholarship has for her is “huge.”
“It’s honestly everything to me because I’m not in such a fortunate position that I’d be able to pay for college out of pocket without any financial assistance,” she said. “But this scholarship really opens up more doors for me as I know that my hard work pays off.
While in the Creative Media program, Briones said she will do her best to use the resources and information provided to her full advantage, with the hopes of developing skills and projects she could only dream of when she was younger.
“I always admired cartoons and the style that they were drawn from, the question of how they achieved that always dawned on me as I would see these amazing drawings or animations or even posters,” she said. “To grow up and finally get an idea of the process and the work it takes truly amazes me.”
She added that as a product of her high school’s Searider Productions program, she gained a love of graphic design and creative media as a whole.
“Once I get my degree, I hope to maybe return to my alma mater and teach or even start my own design firm,” Briones said. “The possibilities from here are endless as long as I stay on this track.”