Message of Mahalo
Aloha! Mahalo for the opportunity to serve as chancellor for the past five years. When we began this joint venture in 2007, I asked what folks most wanted to keep. The answer was clear — our unique ability to provide a “multicultural global experience in a Hawaiian place of learning.” I also said my service would be guided by the quote from Hawaiian scholar Mary Kawena Pukui: “Everybody paddle the canoes together; bail and paddle, paddle and bail, and the shore is reached.”
Now we — faculty, students, staff, friends, alumni, government officials, business leaders, academic colleagues throughout the world — can proudly reflect on how far we have voyaged together and celebrate our many special “Mānoa Moments”, such as:
- We now welcome a growing and accomplished student population of over 20,000 with almost 4,000 in transformed residence halls and soon to be gathering in the Campus Center expansion. Our advances in ensuring student success enabled us to earn full WASC accreditation for the maximum ten years — a reflection of increased recruitment, stronger academic offerings (in our core curriculum, Honors Program, international/continental U.S. student exchanges), improved advising, smoother articulation for UH Community College transfers, more financial aid, and rising graduation rates.
- Our priority of “polishing the Manoa jewel” has yielded new buildings, major renovations, and increased repairs and maintenance. We’ve refreshed both our campus home and ourselves in many ways, from joining Manoa Makeovers to creating more gathering places. We’ve celebrated completions, such as the School of Nursing Simulation Lab, new Center for Microbial Oceanography: Research and Education, renovated Music Complex, and enjoyed groundbreakings, such as the Cancer Center, Edmondson Hall, Gartley Hall, Clarence T.C. Ching field — and many more improvements supporting our mission and making UH Mānoa a destination of choice.
- Our innovative research enterprise continues to be an international leader in solving society's problems — and plays the major role in generating nearly $500M per year through increasing partnerships across our campus, UH members, state, nation, and world.
- New initiatives, such as strategic hiring for Native Hawaiian advancement and sustainability, are yielding diverse, highly accomplished faculty, new joint programs between schools and colleges, and increased donor support — all strengthening us as a “Hawaiian place of learning.”
- Our alumni, retirees, friends, and broader community (locally and globally) know us better through increased communication, contact and participation in campus events — their voices and resources are critically important now and into the future.
- This university truly improves the lives of the people we serve — I see and hear constantly about the community service of Mānoa members — from assisting teachers and students in K–12 to providing care for the underserved.
All of this has been possible because we paddled hard toward a shared goal, and our momentum is now strong because of partnering, both internally and externally. Our commencement ceremonies on May 12 will be a wonderful time to celebrate our achievements together.
Mahalo nui loa for our time together — I envision a very bright future for UH Mānoa and that makes my heart smile. Bill and I feel blessed to have Hawai‘i as our home and you as our ‘ohana. I look forward to being with you as a Mānoa faculty member in the John A. Burns School of Medicine. I wish you all the best!
Virginia S. Hinshaw
Chancellor, University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa