Report of Announcements Made at the April 19th University of Hawaii Board of Regents Meeting

University of Hawaiʻi
Jim Manke, (808) 956-6106
External Affairs & University Relations
Kristen Cabral, (808) 956-5039
Public Information Officer
Posted: Apr 19, 2002

WAIKOLOA, Hawaiʻi — The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents (BOR) held their monthly meeting today at the Outrigger Waikoloa Beach Hotel. The following recommendations were approved:

Proposed Amendments to Board of Regents‘ Administrative Rules on Student Housing Rental Rates, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa: The BOR approved proposed increases to student housing rental rates at UH Mānoa by 5 percent annually beginning Fall 2002 through Fall 2004. The increases were considered only after examining several factors including operating costs, occupancy level, conference business and other sources of income, rate comparisons between similar size institutions, and local apartments and dormitories. The additional revenue will cover increases in personnel costs, projected inflation in utility costs and to services and supplies, money borrowed to complete the installation of cable TV and Internet services to all student rooms, along with the initial annual repayment of money borrowed to finance the cafeteria renovation project.

Proposed Amendments to Board of Regents‘ Administrative Rules on Student Housing Rental Rates, University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo: The BOR approved proposed increases in the student housing rental rates for Fall 2002 by 10 percent, Fall 2003 by 5 percent, and Fall 2004 by 5 percent at UH-Hilo. During the last decade, the student housing program at UH-Hilo has begun to address the deferred physical plant renovations, improvements, and enhancements of the residence areas, which included fire safety improvements, painting, window coverings, carpeting and flooring, new mattresses and furnishings. Much of the work has begun without a rate increase since 1997; however, work to continue to improve the quality of residential life at UH-Hilo cannot continue without the rate increases. In Fall 2002, connectivity for telephones, Internet connections, and cable TV will be provided, with Housing providing free local phone service. Long deferred maintenance will be addressed and furniture and floor coverings repair or replacement will take place.

Establishment of an Associate in Science and Certificate of Achievement in Tropical Forest Ecosystem Management and Agroforestry at Hawaiʻi Community College: The BOR approved the establishment of an Associate in Science and Certificate of Achievement in Tropical Forest Ecosystem Management and Agroforestry at Hawaiʻi Community College. The goal of the program is to provide advanced technological education to enable graduates to work in areas relating to agroforestry and ecosystem management, or to permit them to transfer to four-year colleges. It is estimated that a minimum of 20-30 new jobs per year are available in the State of Hawaiʻi in this field. These include jobs with government agencies, private industry and small mixed forestry and agricultural operations. The program will collaborate with the State of Hawaiʻi‘s Forestry and Communities Initiative, the Workforce Development Council of the State Department of Labor and Industrial Relations, Hawaiʻi DOE National Resources Standards Career Pathways, UH-Hilo College of Agriculture, Forestry and Natural Resource Management, the UH-Hilo Ecology and Evolution program, and the College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources at UH Mānoa.

Awarding of Honorary Degrees to Elizabeth M. Birch and Robert R. Midkiff: The BOR will award the honorary degree, Doctor of Humane Letters, to Elizabeth M. Birch, Executive Director of the Human Rights Campaign, and Robert R. Midkiff, founding Board Member of the Hawaiʻi Community Foundation, President of the Atherton Family Foundation, and President of the Good Beginnings Alliance. It was recommended by the UH system-wide Honorary Degree Committee that the two individuals be recognized for the excellence they have displayed in their professional and personal lives.

Birch is a 1980 graduate of UH Mānoa and is the executive director of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC), America‘s largest gay and lesbian organization. Prior to her HRC appointment in 1995, Birch was worldwide director of litigation and human resources counsel for Apple Computer, Inc., a Fortune 500 Company. Midkiff, as a descendant of a long-line of Hawaiʻi leaders, has, along with his family, played a pivotal role in Hawaiʻi‘s history. He founded the American Trust Company of Hawaiʻi, put together downtown‘s first commercial condominium — the Financial Plaza of the Pacific — and co-chaired the State Capitol development. He is also very active in the community where he is well recognized for his many philanthropic and community efforts. The honorary degrees will be conferred at the UH Mānoa Spring Commencement Exercises on Sunday, May 19.

Amendment to Board of Regents‘ Policy Relating to Student Government Organizations: The BOR approved proposed amendments to its policy relating to student government organizations recommended by the Vice President for Student Affairs. It was recommended that an addition of a new section to its policies be made, facilitating the establishment and chartering of a system-wide student association and to delegate the establishment and chartering of such an organization to the President of the University system. The purpose of the system-wide student association shall be to advocate collectively for the interests and needs of students throughout the University System with the Board, University administration, and other appropriate bodies.

Gifts, Grants, and Contracts: The BOR accepted a report on gifts, grants, and contracts received by the UH System during the period of February 16, 2002 through March 15, 2002, totaling approximately $10.1 million. Also accepted was a report on grants, contracts and agreements acknowledged by the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo during the period February 16, 2002 through March 15, 2002, totaling $199,991.