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(Re)Imagining the Mānoa Experience

Our goal at UH Mānoa is providing students a Mānoa Experience that offers challenging and distinctive academic programs, innovative teaching and service, and world-class research and scholarship reflective of global perspectives and a culturally diverse island state. A recent (December 2009) accreditation review reported a “great deal of excitement and pride about the unique place of Hawaiian Learning and what an extraordinary opportunity the campus has to highlight Hawaiian Knowledge” but noted “that the theme needs to be more clearly articulated.”

In Spring 2010, the Mānoa Experience Work Group was formed by the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.  The Work Group is chaired by Professor Jon Osorio; faculty from Hawaiʻinuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge, members from Mānoa’s accreditation teams, representatives of the faculty senate, and administrators have been exploring issues such as:  What makes the Mānoa experience unique?  In what distinctive and fundamental manner should students be changed by virtue of their experience with Mānoa?  What core values and competencies should students develop by way of the Mānoa Experience?  What do we mean by Hawaiian Place of Learning and Hawaiian sense of place?  How do we reflect this in our curriculum and student and campus life? 

Surveys have been conducted with alumni, new students, and graduating students.  Additionally, a campus-wide focus group session was held in November 2010 and a Mānoa Experience Creative Arts Competition was conducted in October 2011. 

Mānoa’s most recent strategic plans—Defining Our Destiny and Achieving Our Destiny—delineate various features of the Mānoa Experience.  The surveys asked the respective groups whether these features were in fact reflected in their experience at UH Mānoa. Reports from the surveys are provided below.