East Hawaii News

HawCC Faculty Members Named Wo Global Learning Champions

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Two Hawai’i Community College faculty members have been selected as 2015 Wo Global Learning Champions. The honor is made possible through the generosity and vision of the James and Juanita C. Wo Foundation.

As champions, Christine Quintana and Larissa Leslie will gain first-hand experiences interacting with their counterparts in higher education institutions in another country. This year, the group of seven, including five additional members of University of Hawai’i Community Colleges throughout the state, will be traveling to New Zealand. The group will focus on learning how they can return to their campus and support the University of Hawai’i strategic goal of being a premier indigenous-serving institution.

“The importance of international education to Hawai’i cannot be overestimated. An international education helps our educator develop an understanding and appreciation for the cultural differences among people in their immediate environment as well as throughout the world. This makes them better educators and better leaders,” said Vice President for Community Colleges John Morton.

The WGLC is a professional development initiative that creates global learning and leadership opportunities for selected faculty and staff from all seven University of Hawai’i Community colleges. It is an expansion of the existing Wo Learning Champions Program, which has a global initiative for professional development. A professional development program, the Wo Learning Champions was funded by James Wo and his brother Robert in 2001.


“Brother Bob and I have long believed that international education is critical to Hawai‘i’s success today and in the future,” stated Jim Wo. “We have been encouraged by the progress of the professional development program under Louise Pagotto’s leadership and we support her aspiration to make the community colleges more globally-connected places of learning.”

In addition to Quintana and Leslie, the five additional Wo Global Learning Champions are Mary Hattori of Kapi’olani Community College, Ryan Girard of Kaua’i Community College, Joyce Yamada and Liping Liu of UH Maui College, and Ellen Ishida-Babineau of Windward Community College.


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