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Hawai’i CC Palamanui Receives $50K Gift

June 5, 2015, 1:35 PM HST
* Updated June 5, 1:55 PM
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Hawai’i Community College students interested in pursuing marine science at the Hawai’i CC Palamanui campus have something new to be excited about.

An anonymous donor recently gifted the University of Hawai’i System with $50,000 in scholarship support for students enrolled in the Marine Science degree program at Hawai’i CC. The donation has created the first-ever “West Hawai’i Marine Science Endowed Scholarship.”

“We are very grateful for this generous endowed scholarship that will support West Hawai’i students engaged in the marine sciences,” said Hawai’i CC Chancellor Noreen Yamane. “It is critically important for us to move forward in marine sciences as we educate and prepare students to be employed in an area that has such great impact on all of us who live on the Big Island.”

As the university awaits the official approval of the Marine Science program by the Board of Regents, students who are enrolled in the Natural Science program at the Hawai’i CC – Palamanui campus are eligible for the scholarship.

“With the Palamanui Campus now in place, we can lift West Hawai’i from having the lowest college-going rate in the State of Hawai’i,” said Dr. Kenneth “Marty” Fletcher, director of the University of Hawai’i Center at West Hawai’i. “Our students are in critical need of scholarships to stay in college and continue their educational journey. Marine science is a driver of West Hawai’i’s economy and this scholarship will help our students be part of this momentum. Endowing this scholarship to support local young people on marine science career paths is visionary.”

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Students in West Hawai’i will be given first preference, especially those who are active in Native Hawaiian cultural activities and groups that include language, hula, ancient trail restoration, and fishing practices. Ideal candidates would also be active in their community and excel academically.

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“This is a wonderful example of a private donor recognizing a need and an opportunity, and partnering with us to bring about real change for our students and our community,” said University of Hawai’i Foundation President and CEO Donna Vuchinich. “We are most grateful.”

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