University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa and University of Hawaiʻi Hilo graduate students, including two from SOEST, have been selected as conservation fellows, funded by Hauʻoli Mau Loa Foundation. These students were chosen because of their strong academic records as undergraduates, their connections to and integration with the local conservation community, their passion for the ʻāina and keen interest in preserving and protecting shared and limited natural resources and their commitment to career and future efforts to preserve and sustain their local environment.
The two-year fellowships for Hawaiʻi high school graduates, which include tuition exemption, regular stipend and funds for professional development, will help increase the number of qualified Hawaiʻi students and professionals pursuing environmental resource management careers.
Janis Reischmann, executive director of Hauʻoli Mau Loa Foundation commented, “Our support of graduate assistantships at the university stems from our belief that the future of Hawaiʻi’s environment depends upon a new generation of natural resource managers who have strong ties to the communities in which conservation work is occurring or needed. We are excited by the chosen careers of past fellows and look forward to the contributions which will be made by current and future Hauʻoli Mau Loa Fellows.”
Anela Akiona, one of this year’s fellows, is pursuing a marine biology master of science degree in Erik Franklin’s lab at the Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology. She has a passion for science that leads to sustainable management of Hawaiian marine resources.
Aka Beebe, another fellow in this year’s cohort, earned a bachelor of science degree in global environmental science in SOEST this past May. He is deeply committed to maintaining traditional cultural practices and utilizing more contemporary methods to understand how systems developed by our kūpuna (ancestors) function and should continue to function in the context of urbanization of Hawaiian watersheds.