November 7, 2015
The HawCC Alumni and Friends organized a fundraiser dinner to celebrate the 75th anniversary of Hawaii Community College while raising money for student scholarships. Over 200 people attended this lively event. HawCC has supported Hilo since it was established in 1941.
The Territorial Legislature established the college in 1941 as the Hawaiʻi Vocational School. The college began with five trades programs—automotive mechanics, carpentry, apparel trades, machine shop and sheet metal and welding. There were 183 students enrolled the first year.
Currently, there are more than 3,000 students enrolled in 26 programs, and the college opened a new branch campus in Kona this fall called Hawaiʻi Community College–Pālamanui. (http://www.hawaii.edu/news/2015/10/05/hawaii-community-college-celebrating-75-years-of-excellence/)
Emcees Sandi Claveria and Derek Kurisu kept things lively throughout the program. The dinner program included musical entertainment by Billy Rodrigues-Kaiwa, kipaepae by Pele Kaio, unukupukupu by Unuolehua, Kukuena, and HLS hula students.
One of the special guests of the evening was Mr. Matthew Chow, whom some of you may remember as a science teacher from Hilo High School. He retired from teaching in 1986. He was in the first graduating class from HawCC in 1943! Due to the breakout of the war, Mr. Chow never received his welding certificate from what was then Hawaii Vocational School. Chancellor Yamane announced during the program that Mr. Chow will be recognized at the graduation ceremony this spring where he will be presented with his certificate from Hawaii Community College!
The evening concluded with a fashion show of vintage aloha wear coordinated by HawCC Assistant Professor Claudia Wilcox-Boucher and Hana Hou owner, Michelle Zane-Faridi. The models, some who needed a fair amount of arm twisting, were Rae Akiyama, Olivia Boucher, Renee Dela Cruz, Reiko Hamano, Melanie Higa, Misty Inouye, Trina Nahm-Mijo, Vice Chancellor Joni Onishi, Sharon Sugai, Audrey Takamine, Nico Verissimo, Wendy Yamada, and Chancellor Noreen Yamane. They modeled vintage aloha wear from every decade beginning with the 1960s. It was fun to watch the evolution of aloha wear at this event.
Chairperson Doris Chang and Alumni & Friends president Bobby Yamane did a great job coordinating this event. The HawCC Alumni & Friends was able to raise over $25,000 toward an endowed account for student scholarships. This event is another example of how our awesome Hilo community comes together to support the success of our residents. Living Hilo Style.
Visit the HawCC Alumni & Friends webpage in a few days if you want to see more great pictures from the event.
Note: If you would like to donate toward the HawCC Alumni & Friends Scholarship endowment fund, please contact Anne Chung at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. You can also make your gift by visiting https://giving.uhfoundation.org/give-now and search for the Hawaii CC Alumni & Friends Endowment and make your gift using your credit card. Earn miles while doing good things for deserving students!