Hawai'i State News

Hawai‘i’s ‘keiki Oscars’ announce 2023 finalists

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Finalists for the 20th Annual ‘Ōlelo Youth Xchange Student Video Competition presented by First Hawaiian Bank – including students from the Big Island’s Waiākea High School – have been selected from over 600 submissions from keiki in 52 schools across the state.

‘Ōlelo Community Media’s Youth Xchange is Hawai‘i’s oldest and largest contest of its type. This year’s submissions were created by students who attend public, charter and private schools statewide or are homeschooled. Finalist videos are from across all counties.

The 34 award winners will be announced during the in-person Awards Gala on Tuesday, April 25 with their prizes presented in front of hundreds of their statewide peers at the Hawai‘i Convention Center in Honolulu.

Dillon Ancheta of Hawai‘i News Now – a former Youth Xchange finalist himself from Kaua‘i High – and radio and TV personality Mele Apana return to serve as event emcees of the “keiki Oscars.”


The Media Teacher of the Year, determined by votes from participating students, will also be announced at the gala. In addition to the recognition itself, the deserving educator will receive two round-trip tickets anywhere Alaska Airlines serves; the airline is sponsoring the honor in recognition of the importance of media literacy in the education of today’s keiki.

The gala may be viewed live on April 25 starting at 10 a.m. on Channel 53, on the ‘Ōlelo Facebook page, via ‘ŌleloNet at olelo.org/53 and through the mobile app.

The finalist Youth Xchange student videos were selected based on subject impact and technical production. The judging panels included local news media, filmmaking professionals and, in the case of sponsored categories, subject experts.


This year, Youth Xchange videos compete in 13 categories.

The five broad categories are mini-documentary, public service announcement, short, Expert and Junior Expert.

The eight sponsored categories are A More Resilient and Sustainable Hawai‘i; Food Systems and Access to Healthy Food; Creating Peace; Forest Inspired; Pledge to Our Keiki, Taking Care of Our Island Home; Prepare NOW – Talk Story: Share Na‘auao…Wisdom!!; Traffic Safety; and World War II in Hawai‘i.


Students in ‘Ōlelo Youth Xchange compete in three age divisions: elementary, intermediate, and high school. Previous winners and students with professional experience compete in the Junior Expert (kindergarten through middle school) and Expert (high school and college) categories.

This year’s ‘Ōlelo Youth Xchange Student Video Competition is supported by presenting sponsor First Hawaiian Bank, event sponsor Honolulu Star-Advertiser and director sponsor Accumulus. Individual category sponsors are Alaska Airlines and Kanu Hawai‘i; Hawaiian Electric; Pacific Historic Parks, Honoululi National Historic Site; Rotary Club of Honolulu; and the State of Hawai‘i Departments of Health, Land and Natural Resources, and Transportation.

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