UH Hilo Spring 2021 Commencement Celebration Personal Messages
- Graduates Looking to the Future
- Graduates express their gratitude
- UH Hilo graduates share words of wisdom
Graduates express their gratitude
Mahalo Campus Center Team,
For providing students, like myself, a space to grow as leaders. I've met great mentors, great friends, and have become a better person through the celebrations and hardships the CSOs and its programs have put me through. Truly a once in a lifetime opportunity, and I wish I could be here longer to draw it out further. Thank You especially Matt, Maile, Lai Sha, and even Uncle Randy for being the mentors and friends I needed over the years I've been involved on Campus.
— Michael Coloma Taylor
Thank you to all the brilliant, kind, professional, and helpful educators at the University of Hawaii, Hilo. I never thought I could accomplish, what I’ve been able to in the last semester. Thank you Dr. Mills for allowing me in the EDXRF lab, thank you Nick Belluzzo and Adam Johnson for letting me tag along in the field. Much appreciation to Dr. Morrison and Dr. Genz for the letters of recommendation to graduate school. Thank you Kumu Kai, Kumu Tarisi, Kumu Smith, Dr. Reichel and all previously mentioned, I could not have achieved this Bachelor’s degree without your support and dedication.
— Danielle Marie Ciccone
Mahalo nui to my wonderful Linguistics professors, Dr. Ohara, Dr. Saft and Dr. Perez, for their never-ending support throughout my years at UH. Thank you all for sharing your knowledge in the amazing field of linguistics, as well as your precious guidance, advice and support. Ippē nifē dēbiru to Dr. Ohara and my Loochoo braddah Koutaro for helping me reconnect with my Okinawan roots. LIBB!
To the kind faculty at Ka Haka ʻUla O Keʻelikōlani. Mahalo no kou aʻo ʻana mai iaʻu, ʻaʻohe wā e pau ai ka hiki ke aʻo i ka ʻōlelo Hawaiʻi.
To Bela, the headstrong coordinator of the TESOL program. It was an honor to be under your wing during your last year of teaching. To everyone at The Learning Center. To Dr. Osh and all the brilliant students I had the pleasure of tutoring.
— Keolakawai Keliʻikuewa Genko Shimabukuro Spencer
I want to thank the University of Hawaii at Hilo for providing me with the opportunity to play the sport I love and facilitating my academic journey in business.
— Evan Merrier
I would like to thank my parents, siblings, friends, grandmas, and instructors for pushing me to be the greatest nurse I can be. I look forward to using my degree to help out my community.
— Trevor Reese Olakeakua Rufino
He leo mahalo kēia i nā mākua, nā kūpuna, a me nā hoa i kū hoʻokahi me aʻu ma kēia ala ʻimi naʻauao. Ua hele aku kākou me ka manaʻo paʻa, ua paio aku au me ka manaʻo koa, ua lanakila au me ka manaʻo pono, a ua mākaukau au me ka manaʻo wiwo ʻole.
— Alaka'i Iaea-Russell
Thank you to family, friends, teachers, and Hiloans. I love you all. You never failed to make life great.
— Skyler Shinji Nishiyama
Thank you mom & dad for always being there for me. I appreciate all that you have done for me. I wouldn’t have gotten this far without either of you supporting me. I’m blessed to have you as my parents. Love you both dearly! ♥️
Thank you to my brothers, niece, nephew, and in-laws. I appreciate your kindness and love. You were there for me when I needed you. I love you all.
To my classmates and friends, thank you for supporting me, laughing with me, crying with me, and encouraging me to never give up. You all have a special place in my heart.
— Haley Keala-Faith Rasse
A huge heartfelt "Thank you!" to all of my family, friends, professors and colleagues who have supported me along the way. Your collective kindness, patience, guidance, and humor have given me the strength and tools I needed to be successful during my undergraduate studies.
— Jade Makamae Farmer
Thank you family, friends, and professors for all your support. My sincerest appreciation to you all.
— Claire U. Umayas-Bautista
RIL mom (Penny Fox) & dad (Camron Fox)! I finally did it! I'm glad I decided to walk in 2017 so you could see me graduate before you both passed away! I finally completed what I started and thank you to all my angels looking over me! Not a day goes by that I don't miss you, your advice and guidance. It's been rough losing everyone and everything but I finally did it!
I'm going to figure out now how to best live my dash and I hope it to be a rather lengthy one still yet! I'm here for a reason and I want to make that positive impact in people's lives and bring about positive change in the world.
"Be the change you wish to see in the world!" by Mahatma Ghandi. World here I come! Bringing peace, love and aloha!
Mahalo to all my friends & family who helped me over the past few years!!
— Melinda "Mindy" M. Alles
I want to use this opportunity to express my gratitude to all who have helped me along my way while attending the University of Hawai'`i at Hilo. I deeply appreciate all of the mana`o I have gained through my interactions and studies and am eager to do my part in spreading this knowledge with others as I move forward through life. I am proud of what I have accomplished and could not have done it without the help of my kumu, `ohana, and friends - mahalo nui loa.
— Kassandra Leigh Conner
Thankful for my time in Hilo and the great people I was able to meet. Thankful for my parents and family supporting me through college.
— Christian Phillip Casados
Mom, Dad, this one’s for you! To my families and friends back home, thank you for your support!
To UH Hilo and my professors, thank you for putting up with me. You will always have a place in my heart. Fa’afetai tele lava!
— Samitioata Serah Tuiolosega
A big Mahalo Nui Loa to all my families & friends, instructors & advisors, who have given me the best and successful academic journey. To my two sleeping beauties, who have been studying all night and sleeping all day, komol for the memories. And to those who I met and have been a huge part of this journey, Komooltata.
To a very special person who has been my biggest supporter and now we’re graduating together. I am forever grateful to you Ning and the family, Komooltata. Finally to my family at rairok, komooltata for believing in me and never doubting me. Special thank you to my papa’Brett and my late mama’Hetty, you guys are the reason why I came this far and am looking forward to what the world has in store for me.
— Walter Robert Schellhase
Kommol Tata to my families and friends near and far. To my UH professors & advisors for guiding and supporting me throughout the years, Mahalo Nui Loa. To my friends I have made and especially to my two best friends, Kommol tata for sharing and creating memories with me.
Special thank you to my Majuro Families (bubus & jimmas, aunties & uncles). To my other half, I am forever grateful for believing in me. Cheers to those sleepless night! Last but not the least to my two supporters, backbone and my bank account mama Kemlin and papa Emo, Kommol tata. Ne en kar job iakwe im naan in rojan ko amiro iban kar maron topar ijin. I am forever indebted to both of you.
“Kon kar mour eo ao einwot juon eo ejjelak an jabodewot im etta ilo mour in, eniin na rainiin.”
— Branda Korok Agustin
For all the headaches, teardrops, and long nights of studying, it is about to come to an end. Kalahngan Lap (Thanks) to all my families, friends, professors, advisors, and all those that contribute to making this difficult voyage a great and amazing journey. I will forever remember and be grateful for all the love, support, and advice you guys have shown me. All of this great lend of hands and hearts will always be my guidance and tool for clearing my next path. As for my memory at UH Hilo, I will never forget those that help lift my head up when I shattered into pieces thinking that even passing my classes is impossible at the time. At times like this, I also remind myself to strive with all I can and believe in myself, so everything will just be fine.
THANK YOU ALL & KALAHNGAN..
— Lavonna Zarred
Above all, I thank God for this great experience He has planned for me here. Thank you so much UH Hilo for introducing me to different cultures, great professors/staffs and students. Throughout the school years, it’s been a roller coaster but I’m forever grateful for I wouldn’t be the self independent I am today if it weren’t for this great experience.
To my family and friends, thank you guys for the endless love and support you all have given me. To my mom and dad, thank you both for all the encouragements and believing in me.
I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13)
— Crystal Leilani Joab
All I can say is mahalo nui loa, UH Hilo, for helping me become what I am today. I will be forever grateful to my mentors and professors within the English and Gender & Women Studies departments. Thank you too to the faculty in these departments and elsewhere who-- in my senior year-- embraced my newfound interest in psychology and have, since then, been helping me plan for a potential master's in that field. As cliché as this may sound, I cannot express my gratitude enough. I truly feel that God guided me back home from Portland to complete my undergraduate degrees here, and I am so ineffably glad that I heeded that call.
— Alexander Athena Eva Celeste Coley
Much appreciation to all the beautiful people I have met along this timeless journey who have inspired and lifted me up. Thank you to all who support my dreams. All I have left to do is make a positive difference in this world and to say: I am on my pursuit to happiness. Mahalo and Farewell UH Hilo
— Persia-Sun Majree Daigle
Aloha mai kākou a mahalo! I've had so many great experiences here in Hawaiʻi, and I am eternally grateful for this Island and culture. However, now it's time for a new adventure. Mahalo lui loa.
— Elijah R. Owens
First, I would like to thank my professors, coaches, and teammates. Without you, I wouldn’t have had such an amazing experience during my time at UH Hilo. Second, I would like to thank my friends. While our time here together may have been short, we have made so many memories, and there are many more to come in the future. Last but not least, I would like to thank my family for supporting me as I navigate this difficult journey we call life. I would also like to give a special shout out to my parents James and Emily Hirayama. I couldn’t have done any of this without your constant love and support. Thank you guys for everything you do for me.
— Jamieson Thomas Kawika Hideo Hirayama
I owe a big thank you to all the professors in the College of Business and Economics (CoBE). Each professor takes the time to make sure that we are comfortable leading the next generation of businesses.
Along with them, the friends I have made in CoBE mean the world to me. We have been through so much together and I know that we will continue to be in each others' lives.
— Sienna Lynn Wareham
It was not easy leaving home, but it was necessary in order for me to grow as an individual. Thank you Dr. Mina & Dr. Lyons for taking me under your wings and help shape me to becoming the woman I am today. I'd like to also thank all of my professors for all of your patience and compassion towards us as students, especially during the time of the pandemic. Most importantly, I'd like to thank my mom & dad. I can never thank you enough for all of your endless love and support.
Khob khun mak ka.
— Tipparat Tiensuwan
Mahalo nui loa e ka ʻohana, nā hoa, nā kumu a me nā limahana i kākoʻo mau i kaʻu huakaʻi ma ke kulanui o Hawaiʻi ma Hilo. ʻO ʻoukou nō hoʻi kaʻu mau kumu hoʻohālike. He pōmaikaʻi wale nō hoʻi ka hiki iaʻu ke hui me ʻoukou i piha i ka naʻauao ma koʻu ola. ʻO ʻoukou nō ke kumu i hiki ai iaʻu ke puka kula. Mahalo nui.
— Sakai Rikako
I am so grateful for my experience here at UH Hilo and for all of those who were a part of my journey. Blessed to be able to represent UHH across my chest for the past 4 years continuing to play the game I love for my hometown. Thankful for all the love and support of my family and friends. Here’s to the next chapter and whatever the future may hold..
— Kiarra Makana O Ke Akua Lincoln
I would like to thank my family, friends, teammates, athletic staff, and professors for the amazing time I had here in Hilo. Your continuous love and support means everything to me!
— Markie Mieko Okamoto
Thank you to my Mom, Dad and two sisters for all the support throughout my time in school from elementary up until today. Also, thank you to my hard-working professors and advisors of the College of Business and Economics for passing on knowledge and experience. I'd like to thank my Campus Center family for providing me with valuable work and life experience. Thank you to all the friends I've made during my four years at UH Hilo, for all the priceless memories and friendships. I'd also like to thank the Lambda Psi Chapter of Delta Sigma Pi for providing me with valuable opportunities and connections for a successful career. UH Hilo has always treated me great and has given me more than I could ever ask for in terms of academics and an overall fulfilling college experience. Thank you!
— Kamuela Alaka'i Kahana Labasan
I have made so many wonderful memories here, shared so many laughed, shed many tears. Thank you to the people who have made my time here truly wonderful.
I would like to take a moment to thank everyone who has supported me on my journey as this chapter of my life closes. While my journey is not over, I would have never gotten this far without the continued support of family, friends, classmates, professors, advisors, etc. I am forever appreciative and grateful for the lessons learned and time spent here.
This is not the end!
Mahalo Nui Loa for the continued love and support!
— Victoria Akemi Xinh Rapoza
I am so thankful for the opportunities I have received while attending the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo keeping me steadfast on my path toward reaching my goals. I am excited to be receiving my Bachelors degree in Biology! Although my journey at UH Hilo is complete, I will always continue to Kūliʻa I Ka Nuʻu!
— Nicole Lea Puakaʻilima Garza
I want to send my gratitude to my teachers at UH Hilo, managers and coworkers at my workplace; without their support, I would not accomplish my educational goal and maintain financial stability. You are part of my successful journey. Thank you.
— Trang Minh Thi Nguyen
Mahalo nui loa Robert Brigoli Jr, my partner for the past 30 years. Wow, can you believe it??? We did it! It wasn't a perfectly smooth road, but we trekked it together and crossed the finish line. Thank you for all your support and PATIENCE. Love you, Babe!
Last but not least, I thank and acknowledge the greatest teachers in my life, my Mom and my Dad. Though they are not here physically, they are always with me in spirit. God is amazing and His timing is absolutely perfect for Mother's Day starts off my final week at UH Hilo and it ends when I receive my diploma on May 15, which is my Daddy's birthday. So, I will honor them when I receive my diploma and I share this accomplishment with them. I appreciate the values and life's lessons that you have taught me. I love & miss you both!
— Beverly Nanihau Kua
Mahalo to all the professors at COBE. Special thanks to my parents & my two wonderful daughters. I would not be here if it wasn't for all your support & encouragement!
— Nicole Anela Konanui
Mahalo to my UH Hilo ohana, Hilo Marshallese community, and 509 baamle for the endless support throughout this incredible journey!
Kommol Tata to my loving mama Maryann & papa Ken. Also to my biggest motivators Asdan, Cyann, Joash, & AleahT'ia ... We did it guys!
A special shoutout to my main financial supporters: CRANKSTART, KBE, & MISGLB! You've made this a smoother ride than it's intended to be. Thank you for believing in me!
And finally, congrats to my fellow 2021 graduates :-)
!! Aolep men im emman bwe Anij emman !!
— Maria J Jetton
Thank you to my mom and dad for being incredible parents, to my brothers for being my protectors, my sister for being my best friend, and my beautiful nephews for bringing more love into my life. I love you all immensely.
— Daysia Alexis Kaʻiulani Dolfo
I would like to thank my family, friends, and university faculty for the treasured memories and loving support throughout my education.
K shoots den everyone, I'll remember you all in therapy.
— Kylie Ann Sachiko Sasaki
Thank you so much to my family, friends, and Jerrick for all of your continuous love and support! I couldn't have done it without you all! Love you guys! We did it!!
— Courtney R. K. Malina
I would like to thank my family for being a very big support system to me during my time here at UH Hilo, especially my Aunty Dooni, Uncle Russel, Cousin Dawn and Aunty Kai. Thank you for your nonstop love and support!
— Simianne Aiu Taber
Mahalo piha to my 'ohana, my hoaloha, my Anthropology department kumu, and my ASM Affiliates 'ohana for your support and belief in me over the years.
Most of all, my aloha goes to my son, Keahinōweo, my everything.
Hāʻawe i ke kua; kiʻi i ke alo
— Lauren Marie Ululani Kepa'a
Mahalo to my family, friends, and all those who have supported me and guided me through my educational endeavors. I greatly appreciate all the words of encouragement and the friendships I've made throughout this journey.
— Tari A. Carvalho
Thank you to my family, friends, professors, cohort, and everyone who has supported me along this journey. Congratulations to all my fellow graduates! Here's to the next chapter.
— Susan Jeong Park
I’d like to thank my family and friends for supporting me through out my education and to God for always giving me the strength the endure all obstacles. Mahalo Ke Akua.
— Nicole Pualani Cantan
Mahalo nui loa to my family, friends, professors and colleagues who have provided me with endless support and solid foundations to thrive. As a first generation student with deeply connected roots to Kaua’i, I dedicate this degree to my family who has taught me strong work-ethic, resilience, and the will to succeed. This degree belongs to not only my family, but the community and people that came before me and now after me. This milestone represents opportunity for Asian American and Pacific Islander Women to break barriers in higher education and mental health. To everyone who I have crossed paths with, thank you for helping pave my journey. Here’s to changing future generational narratives and the preservation of knowledge!
E kūlia i ka nu'u -
"Strive to reach the highest"
— Shantel Kālola Tamiko Rita
Mahalo to my ʻohana and boyfriend for supporting my non-conventional college journey from start to finish. I couldn't have done it without all your love and support!
— Bronwyn Ku'ulei Kay
Thank you to my friends, family, and all of the staff at UH Hilo. I owe this special moment to all of you. Without the love and support, I could have never dreamed of earning my bachelor's degree.
— Jace Taka
Mahalo nui e nā kumu!
Thank you teachers! Your support throughout this journey has been memorable. Each lesson learned provided me with opportunities of growth that are now coming into fruition.
Mahalo nui e kuʻu ʻohana!
I would like to thank each and everyone of my family members. If it wasnʻt for your love and support, I wouldnʻt be graduating today. You inspire me to live a life rooted in compassion for myself and others.
Mahalo ke akua!
Thank you Spirit! For reminding me that there is always something greater than me that connects all things. I remain humble, grateful and prepared to begin my next journey in life, remembering that my greatest truth is ALOHA.
— Taylor Līhauakahianui Collier
Congratulations to all the Graduates!
Muchas gracias a mi familia por su cariño siempre! Thank you to my friends and boyfriend for your support and encouragement! Mahalo to all of my professors and faculty for your guidance!
— Celina Marie Palafox
I want to thank my family for all of their love and support, my friends both new and old for making things fun, and my professors for all of their help.
My time here has created wonderful memories that I will forever cherish. I have met so many new people who I am now able to call friends and have been given so many new learning opportunities.
Thank you everyone who has supported me.
— Tristine Rene Honea
I Na Kumu
I'd like to thank my Brilliant Geology Professors for their wonderful support, hard work, and patience; Dr. Stephen Lundblad, Dr. Ken Hon, Dr. James Anderson and Dr. Jene Michaud. Without you none of this was possible!
Also to Jan Schultz and Jeff Meyer, my first Geology Professors who started me on this journey by sharing their inspiration and passion for the Planet on my first Field Study to Death Valley.
Finally to Dr. Robert S. Gray; a Professor I have to thank not only for his belief in my ability to become a Science Major, and his pushing me to work at the level I needed to in order to succeed-- but for being such an important Mentor, Father Figure, and Friend.
Ka Lama Kū O Ka No'eau
The Standing Torch Of Wisdom
— Michelle Ashley Mazzetti
Special thanks to the College of Business and Economics staff, College of Arts and Sciences staff, and the Filipino Studies Program for mentoring me throughout the fours years I have been at UH Hilo. You have such a big impact on the students' lives and I hope you give yourself credit for the outstanding job you have done!
— Christine Joy Halabas Galdones
Mahalo nui loa to my professors and mentors for all the great lessons. I look forward to using these new skills in my future endeavors.
Lastly, a BIG KALAHNGAN to my parents and my Lokahi, Olu, and Mililani family for your continuous love and support. I would not be where I am today if you were not there to motivate me constantly. Thank you and ih poakpoakei kumwail :)
— Moesha Mendiola
Without my family I would not be here graduating, especially my parents. Without them I would not have been able to come here to UH Hilo and experience the real college life. I love them with all my heart and can’t wait to further my education with the help of my family!
— Brianna Nohealani Yoshiko Ellegard
To my mom and dad. Thank you for being the best support system a daughter could ask for. Your constant love, support, and reassurance were what helped me push through these last four years and overcoming obstacles I did not think I could conquer. I know I would not be graduating today if it wasn't for all of the sacrifices you had to make in order for me to pursue my dreams, and for that, I am forever grateful. To my brothers, thank you for being a call away to listen to my college rants or just being a fun distraction. You guys always make my tough days seem not as bad. As we all know, COVID-19 did not make the last two years of college any easier, but I am so thankful that you all were supporting me and constantly pushing me to finish, even during this pandemic. I love you all so much.
— Niki Rae Concepcion Torres
Thank you, God, Jesus Christ, My Son Keahi, My Mother Pearl, and Everyone I Love, for Making My Life So Beautiful...
— Mia Moana Kuuipo Ray
Upon the completion of my degree, I would like to deeply express gratitude towards my grandparents who encouraged me to never settle and strive for ultimate success. Their guidance and love has given me an unstoppable mindset. My son Eli has been a constant motivation, allowing me to conquer any challenges that have stepped in my path. This journey towards enlightenment continues to be quite remarkable. Remember to always allow your creativity, passions, and dreams to shed light in the world. Only do good unto others and be the change you want to see. There's power in knowing who you are and embracing your authentic self!
— Nicole Kiana Arruda
Thank you to everyone who's played a role in my current successes! I finally did it!
— Lei Kyna Rochelle Alcon Ganiron
I would like to dedicate this accomplishment to my dad, Raymer, and my mom, Tesina. I wouldn't have done it without the both of you. Thank you!!! And to my amazing partner and my beautiful daughter, love you guys!
— Merisa Debrum
First and foremost, I would like to extend my sincere mahalo to my mentor, Franny Brewer, for her guidance and support throughout my journey in the TCBES program. I would also like to thank Molly, Jade, and Springer for their continuous mentorship and support over the years.
I would also like to acknowledge the Hauʻoli Mau Loa Foundation, Kamehameha Schools, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, the Big Island Association of Nurserymen, and the Richard Smart Scholarship Fund for making it possible for me to pursue this graduate degree. I am forever grateful for your financial support.
Lastly, I would like to thank my partner, Pila, for his undying love and emotional support day in and day out. We did it!
— Kawehi Marie Kane Lopez
Thank you to the History and Linguistics departments for helping me navigate my requirements, my family for their support, and my husband James for his support and patience when I was stressed, sleep-deprived, or forgot to eat again. My unit for being flexible with me, or going to school would have been extremely difficult.
The amount of people I want to thank are too large for the character limit I have to be named individually, but just want to let you guys know: Mahalo nui loa!
— Ariel Kaʻionaniokekai Mei Lann Tuvera Rocha Young-Ziegler
I Ka 'Ohana
Mahalo to my Family, who was my rock through this whole process. Without their Commitment to supporting my Education I wouldn't be where I am today. Though he is no longer with us, I have my Dad to thank more than anyone. His impact on my life was so great, I still strive every day to make him proud.
To my Daughter Sofia, my biggest inspiration!
To Kenny the Love of my life, his sacrifice during this time to set his busy career aside and take care of our family was what made my final Semester possible.
To My Mom, and Baba for also helping out beyond the call of duty- as well as Kalehua and Kaela for being there for us in every way possible!
Pili Kau, Pili Ho'oilo
Together in the Dry Season, Together in the Wet Season
— Michelle Ashley Mazzetti
My favorite memories at UH Hilo were always with my nursing school classmates (shoutout to OG Group 2)! The work was extremely difficult, but it helped me and my classmates to build a strong bond that I will cherish forever.
Mahalo to everyone - my family, girlfriend, classmates, and professors - who helped me to get to this point in my life. I definitely could not have done it without everyone’s love and support!
— Brandon Kahalimalulani Haʻaheo Meyers
I would just like to take the opportunity to thank those who have supported me throughout my years on this journey. To my mother and grandmother, you are two of the strongest women I know, I can't thank both of you enough for constantly believing in me, and pushing me to go above and beyond and to reach places that I never thought I could. My father, from thousands of miles away, you've always made sure that I knew that you had my back, thank you. My sister Veronica, my best friend, thank you for never giving up on me. A great thank you to all of my aunties, uncles, and cousins who have played a great role in my success. Lastly, a thank you to all of my brothers for being by my side since the beginning. I love you all, words cannot explain how thankful I am to each and every one of you.
— Jaime Ramiro Rosas Jr
First, I thank God for blessing me with the strength, wisdom, and grace to achieve this great accomplishment. I also thank God for blessing me with a strong support system to encourage me along this journey.
To my family and friends, I love you all so much! I could not have done this without you and I sincerely thank you for all that you have done for me, and continue to do as I continue on my educational journey.
To my professors, thank you for your endless encouragement, support, and sage advice. I appreciate the time and energy that you have all contributed throughout my years of schooling at UH Hilo.
— Kikue Keʻalapuaokalani Bernabe
🌸 "Yesterday is what brought you to today."
I am thankful for my mom, my little brother, and my other half, Robert for always supporting and believing in me 💜
Much love to my family & friends, and those who continue to support me from a distance (near and far).
— Gladys Ann Soliven Torrano
There are many people that I owe a thank you to. My parents who provided a foundation that allowed me to attend college. All my friends that have been there along the way. Whether to grab a coffee after a late night of studying or to be a second pair of eyes for one of my research papers. Finally, to all the professors of the History department. Who were always willing to talk, be it about a paper or a personal problem.
— Victoria Ann Malia Jose
To my family, thank you for the encouragement, unconditional love, and support you have given me.
To my friends, thank you for all the wonderful memories and being that ray of sunshine in my life.
To my professors and counselors, thank you for helping me grow and for helping me accomplish my academic goals.
I wouldn't have gotten this far without you all.
— Charisma Felipe
Mahalo to my family and friends, my Campus Center 'ohana and to everyone I have been blessed to meet. You all have made such an impact on me and I will always reflect on these moments as I journey through life.
— Kilia Marie Keliilani Chillingworth
I would like to personally thank Dr. Kirsten Møllegaard, who is the English Department Chairperson and a wonderful professor of English. Dr. Møllegaard has relentlessly encouraged me, supported me, and listened to me as I pursued my journey as an English major, and a human being, and I am forever grateful for all that she is.
Thank you to my incredible family who perpetually supported me no matter how hard it was to be away from them.
Congratulations to the class of 2021!
— Mirvat Abdelhay Mohamed
To my ohana, mahalo nui for never leaving my side and always being there to pick me up when I was down. You are the foundation in everything I do.
Dad, you are the man I have always looked up to. You were and still are one of my biggest role models in life. Thank you for everything you do for me, our family, and our community I love you.
And to my mom, you're the best... literally the BEST! I am so blessed to have you as my mother and thank you for never giving up on me. Thank you for always staying up late and spending so much time to help me with my homework and just life in general. I couldn't have done it without you mom. We're here finally, we did it and I always wanna make you proud. I love you so much.
— Pulama Louis
These past few years at UH Hilo have been the best years of my life. I have made lifelong friendships, learned so much ʻike, and most importantly gained a new sense of pride and identity as a Kanaka ʻŌiwi. I would like to mahalo my ʻohana for their unwavering aloha and kākoʻo (I love you māmā)! Mahalo e nā kumu for instilling me with a wealth of ʻike and skills to become a better kanaka for the lāhui. And lastly, special shout out to my hoaaloha. Mahalo for all the late nights, dance parties, jam sessions, "study sessions", ʻike bombs and endless laughs! I couldn't have done it without you all! Almost forgot! A big Mahalo to this ʻāina, Moku o Keawe, for nourishing and protecting me for 5 years, I will miss you very much! Me ke aloha nui a me ka mahalo piha pū!
— Jessica Kaʻiminaʻauao Downey Valladares
to all who have supported me and stood by my side through this journey, I'm grateful for all of you.
— Iliana Lin Maile Jose
I’d like to thank my family and friends for always supporting me. I’d also like to thank my professors for being encouraging and helpful throughout my time here at UH Hilo. You all are appreciated!
— Sheann D. Belmes
I just want to thank my loved ones for pushing me to thrive and succeed in my years at college. Its been very challenging, but with the right people by your side, it makes everything worth it (:
— Tessa Kimiko Kishigawa
I'd like to thank my family, friends, coaches, professors, and my whole support system. At UH Hilo I crossed paths with many great people, and I am forever grateful for my experience here. Now I am happy to be a Vulcan Alumni. God Bless.
— Steven Kawa'a Hubbell
"All that I am and hope to be, I owe to those who believe in me"
To my parents, family & friends, thank you for supporting me on this journey. Thank you for the love, support & encouragement. Love you all!
— Leishlyn Belle Gorospe Sadang
Thank you to my family and friends for your continued love and support. We did it!
— Jasmine Teiko Kylie Smeraglia
Thank you to all the UH Hilo faculty and staff who have helped me immensely on this journey, especially Dr. Lorna Tsutsumi, Dr. Lissa Tsutsumi, and Dr. Matthew Platz! Thank you to the UH Hilo Panaewa farm staff for being a second family! Thank you to the clubs and community organizations I have had the opportunity to be a part of through my time at UH Hilo (Hawaiʻi Island Pre-Vet Club, Rotaract, INT Dance Squad, PetFix spay/neuter clinics, Hilo Veterinary Clinic, and Arise church)!
— Ariana Miya Dolan
Special thanks goes to the incredibly supportive professors and faculty in the marine science and chemistry departments who encouraged me every step of the way.
— Kelsea Laine Muir
I am so grateful for my for my wonderful friends and loving family, without whom this amazing experience would not have been possible!
— Kelsea Laine Muir
I would like to give thanks to my family for raising me to become the young man I am today, to all the friends I made throughout my 4 years of college who made this journey memorable, and to the College of Business and Economics and Lambda Psi Delta Sigma Pi for all the support to help me obtain my BBA.
— Eric Gani Tejada
Mahalo to all of my kumus who helped lead to where I am today, especially my Hawaiian studies and anthropology department professors. I will be forever grateful for the classes that challenged me to push myself physically, mentally, and spiritually. Without hula, I would have still been stuck in my shell and afraid to use my voice. Ukulele classes taught me the importance of having something to turn to in the darkest hour. My departmental classes taught me about the power of agency.
— Natasha Amanda Beepath
I would like to thank the Academy for this great honor. And my family, my friends, my peers, and my professors. I could not have done it without you. To Bob and Ann, you two are amazing. Truly. You made this all possible for me and it will forever mean the world to me. To my parents, my sisters, and my niece, knowing you have been there for me even from far away has been such a huge comfort and motivation. Thank you for listening to me talk about rocks and math even when you don't know what I am saying. I love you all.
— Alice Mary Martin
A big Thank You to my family, especially my parents (all the way in Chuuk) and my Kinoʻole and ASH family for the support and encouragement that you all have shown and given me to help push me through graduating. Thank you to the faculty and staff at UH Hilo who have welcomed me into their offices just to bother them with questions and to seek their advice. Thanks to my new families and friends here in Hilo for the bonds and friendships that made memorable moments. However, I am most thankful to God who has guided me through these people that I have mentioned. Without my Lord's guidance, I am nowhere. Thanks Be To God!
— Kiasa Asinna Kanto
Hard work truly pays off. Prof Clearwater, thank you for teaching me to advocate for myself, my patients and helping me to think critically. Thank you to my family and friends who have been my support system throughout this journey. Mom, thank you for always being my rock; I hope to be half the woman that you are in this world. I am grateful and love all of you.
My favorite memory was caring for a pt in the emergency room at HMC with my good friend, Starlyne. We learned the importance of focusing on one task at a time, and to ALWAYS have a green bag near the patient. Rae, thank you for taking me under your wing to guide and help me grow into the best version of myself. I can’t wait to be an E.R. nurse like you! No more white scrubs for me! Ua puka aku au i ke kulanui!
— Lexie Ilihia Taylor
I would like to thank my family, my friends, my professors, and all staff at UH Hilo who supported my journey always with aloha nui. All of you are my mentors and my inspirations. I am really grateful to have had the life-changing opportunity to meet you all. I was really lucky to be able to come to Hilo and to be surrounded by so many great people who are aiming toward the same goal proactively. I would never be able to graduate without your support. Mahalo nui.
— Sakai Rikako
And lastly, to my Kenny. Thank you for always being by my side no matter what obstacles I go through. You have been a big supporter through this journey, and I would not have gotten through it all if it wasn't for your love for me and always pushing me to strive to be the best. The last couple of years with the pandemic have been tough, to say the least, but I am so grateful that you were always there for me and never complained when you had to pick up the slack when I was buried with a ton of schoolwork. Thank you for always reminding me that I am loved. You are my partner and my best friend, and I am blessed to be able to always count on you whenever I need support. I can't wait to go into this new chapter of my education journey with you by my side, I love you.
— Niki Rae Concepcion Torres
Thank you to my family for encouraging and supporting my education, even through the many winding paths I took to reach this milestone.
— Estreya Lonni Enquist