Federal Funding of More Than $2.5 Million Going to Support Native Hawaiian Education Programs at UH-Hilo

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Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) recently announced $2,533,446 in U.S. Department of Education grants that will support the University of Hawaii at Hilo’s Kipuka Native Hawaiian Student Center efforts by establishing a new on-campus living-learning center, as well as implementing activities to further support students and boost the institution’s graduation rate. The federal funding is made possible through the U.S. Department of Education’s Native Hawaiian Serving Institutions Education Grants Program.

Congresswoman Hirono is a member of the House Committee on Education and Labor.


The grant award descriptions are as follows:

– $1,969,105 to renovate a campus housing facility to establish the Hale Kanilehua Living Learning Center

This funding will be utilized for the construction of a living-learning center that would accommodate 50 students, two support staff, peer mentors and one scholar-in-residence. It will provide a safe and supportive living-learning environment for students by successfully transitioning them into the University through first-year experience seminars and other academic/social integration experiences. The learning center’s aim will be to inspire students to explore and excel, particularly in Hawaiian language and culture, Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines, as well as integrate their academic, co-curricular and residential experiences.
It is anticipated this grant will be for a total of 2 years.

– $564,341 to establish three activities that will improve persistence and graduation rates at the University of Hawaii at Hilo

This funding will be utilized to establish three academic activities:

*Facilitating Student Engagement Through Living-Learning Communities This activity will facilitate student engagement through first-year experience seminars and other academic/social integration experiences and summer retention programs, peer mentoring, tutoring and learning communities, and faculty initiated activities and projects outside of the classroom.

*Strengthening Student Leadership Development
This activity will strengthen student leadership development through leadership courses, seminars and workshops, service-learning and campus and community-based learning opportunities, as well as planning and implementing an annual Hawaiian Leadership Conference.

*Enhancing Hawaiian Language Learning and Teaching
This activity will enhance Hawaiian Language learning and teaching through development and improvement of course materials, development of new courses and assessment tools, and faculty development and mentoring.

It is anticipated this grant will be for a total of 5 years.

The Kipuka Native Hawaiian Student Center is devoted to helping Hawaiian students from all majors and backgrounds achieve academic excellence. To learn more, please visit: http://kipuka.uhh.hawaii.edu/index.html

From the Office of Rep. Mazie Hirono, Washington D.C.





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