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The Voice of Sacred Hearts Academy
Updated: 28 min 57 sec ago

Alumna tackles world of cybersecurity

Tue, 01/24/2017 - 2:43pm

Kristen Tumacder, a 2015 Sacred Hearts Academy graduate, has been prospering in the cybersecurity world.

Tumacder was recently elected as a member of Rochester Institute of Technology’s (RIT) National Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC). This is a national competition between college students and professionals from the security industry.

Tumacder is the only female of the 12-member team representing the finest cybersecurity students at RIT.

“I really like being on the team because I get to help everyone out by contributing my Windows defensive skills,” she said. “As a team, we’re really close and we’re almost like family.”

Through her dedication to cybersecurity, Tumacder has been awarded the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) Cyber Ops Global Scholarship. The scholarship was designed to encourage young people to consider a cybersecurity profession. According to the scholarship, the number of cyber attacks has been steadily increasing, while the number of industry professionals has been on the decline.

Cisco will offer Tumacder free training and mentoring for when she takes two certification exams in June. If she passes these two tests, she will be certified by Cisco.

In addition, Tumacder accepted a summer internship as a network security intern at The MITRE Corporation. MITRE is a multi-billion dollar nonprofit corporation that operates under federally-funded research; it is also a development center that directly assists the U.S government with scientific research and analysis, development and acquisitions, and systems engineering and integration.

“I really like networking, so I hope I can learn more about networking than from what I just learn in class,” she said. “I hope to get a hands-on experience with this.”

Even after graduating from the Academy, Tumacder finds time to give back by committing to help the school’s CyberPatriot and Robotics teams.

“I have been coming back since I graduated,” she said. “For robotics, I went to the past two year’s kickoff events, where they release the game. For CyberPatriot, I help answer questions during competitions because sometimes the mentors aren’t there and to just support them during this time.”

Obama bids bittersweet, hopeful farewell: ‘Yes, we did. Yes, we can’

Sat, 01/14/2017 - 8:19pm

On Jan. 10, President Barack Obama bid a bittersweet farewell to an emotional crowd in his hometown of Chicago, Ill.

The 44th commander-in-chief’s address discussed political and social achievements of his administration during his two-term presidency; all the while, maintaining an underlying theme of hope and optimism–the same ideals upon which his campaign was founded eight years ago.

Obama began by discussing his experience in office with the American people, stating that it was the people who made him “a better president” and “a better man.”

At one point during his address, the crowd began chanting, “Four more years!”; implying that they wanted him to be their president for another four-year term. Obama replied with a smile, “I can’t do that.”

The first half of the address concentrated on the state of American democracy, including the strides it has made during his administration.

He urged Americans to uphold the ideals of the American Dream and respond to the patriotic call of active citizenship. He also recapitulated how citizens have done so in years past, putting America on the historical map for trailblazers and dreamers.

Obama discussed and rebutted several discussions that have recently come to light. These included “post-racial America,” the dialogue on climate change” and the “self-defeating” selective sorting of facts many have taken on, as an effect of the recent presidential campaign.

“Regardless of the station we occupy,” he said. “We have to try harder.”

In a similar fashion to First Lady Michelle Obama’s final speech, in which she calmed young people’s fears about the upcoming Trump administration, Barack Obama assuaged the anxieties of the American people against terrorism and international rivals.

“Let’s be vigilant but not afraid,” he said.

As a final point, the president urged people to take part in democracy and to be an active voice; not only when there is an election. This, he says, is how democracy and politics will be effective and freedom duly earned, when all people “(accept) the responsibility of citizenship, regardless of which way the pendulum of power swings.”

Misty-eyed, the president thanked Michelle Obama and his daughters, as well as Vice President Joe Biden for their dedication and support during his presidency.

Following the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump, the Obamas plan to remain in Washington, D.C. so that their daughter Sasha can graduate from high school with her class.

They will then continue to live as private citizens. During an interview on “Late Night With Jimmy Fallon,” Michelle Obama confirmed she will continue to work on various initiatives. She also said that the president plans to write a book following his time in office.

Despite Americans’ differing views on Obama’s presidency, one aspect remains unquestionable: his administration will go down as one of the most substantial presidencies in history. The continuation of his legacy, however, remains up to the American people.

‘Sell’-ebrating the holidays with flora

Thu, 01/05/2017 - 1:31pm

For the first time, Sacred Hearts Academy’s annual Christmas tree sales were not held on campus but rather, at various locations around Oahu.

Due to the lack of volunteers during previous years, the Academy’s junior division partnered with Habilitat, a long-term rehabilitation center. The center uses tree sale funds to offer student scholarships.

Through the partnership, consumers could pick up trees or wreaths from six different locations. The locations included: Central Middle School, Koko Head Elementary School, Kalaheo High School, Mililani Waena Elementary School, Waimalu Elementary School and Kapolei Kmart.

Proceeds from the tree sales went toward the junior division’s project graduation at the end of the year.

“We’re proud of the money we raised,” junior division advisor Elizabeth Gabriel said.

As Habilitat distributed trees and wreaths, Academy students worked hard on campus. Student and parent volunteers helped with the distribution of poinsettias. They volunteered for up to seven hours over the weekend.

Band welcomes winter with Disney and holiday tunes

Wed, 01/04/2017 - 9:15am

Earlier this month, Sacred Hearts Academy’s band hosted its annual winter concert, which included a variety of Disney and Christmas songs. It also included months of preparation by the students, who were ecstatic to reveal their work to the audience.

For the beginning band, this was their first time performing in public. They played a total of 10 songs, including “Merrily We Roll Along,” “Jingle Bells” and “Rock This Band.”

This was the intermediate band’s second winter concert. They performed “Colors of the Wind” and were also given exciting pieces, such as “Achilles’ Wrath” and “Fantasia.” They ended their section with the Christmas classic, “Merry Christmas, Darling.”

“I liked the music,” said sophomore Sally Do. “It was fun because I never played it before.”

For many of the concert band students, this winter concert marked their first time wearing black dresses. The dresses symbolized the students becoming more skilled in playing their instruments.

They performed Disney songs, “Lilo and Stitch” and “Fantasia 2000,” and closed with two Christmas jingles, including “The 3-Minute Nutcracker” and “Christmas Music For Winds.”

Finally, the Academy’s most advanced level class, the Wind Ensemble, wowed the crowd with exceptional playing.
“I was kind of scared when we came in for (‘Marriage of Figaro Overture’), but I was pretty satisfied,” sophomore Minami Nagahama said.

Seniors dig up respect for the dead through service project

Tue, 12/06/2016 - 12:31pm

During the Thanksgiving weekend, a group of seniors paid homage to the Congregation of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary founders by cleaning a local cemetery.

The seniors, enrolled in a “Dying and Rising” theology course, worked at the King Street Catholic Cemetery. It is the final resting place of many influential figures in the congregation’s history, such as Bishop Libert Boeynaems and Mother Judith Brassier. Both were the founders of Sacred Hearts Academy.

Many who are buried in the cemetery came to Hawaii from Europe during the 1800s and 1900s. A Tahitian princess is also interred there. They have no living family members on the islands.

Armed with rakes, weeding tools, trash bags and reverent hearts, students discarded debris scattered around the area and raked fallen leaves. They also uprooted weeds from graves and tombstones.

Along with shovelling foliage into bags, senior Justine Kuna Sison was able to uproot and discard a deep-seated worry.

“I wasn’t sure if it was disrespectful to be in a place where you didn’t know anyone who was buried there,” Sison said. “I realized afterward that you’re okay, as long as you have good intentions.”

Once the graveyard was rid of unwanted greenery and garbage, the class placed red flowers on the gravestones to pay respects and holiday greetings to the deceased.

Sison believes that the tradition of cleaning the cemetery is vital in establishing an appreciation for life and death.

“This service teaches students the significance of someone’s death and how to obtain respect for them,” Sison said.

Dancing hula through New York City

Tue, 12/06/2016 - 12:17pm

An estimated 3 million people were at this year’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, including 200 hula dancers and 400 band members from Hawaii.

Of those, Sacred Hearts Academy was well-represented; two students danced hula and a small group marched alongside the Hawaii All State Marching Band.

Dressed in bright red and yellow attire, Junior Emily Wharton and senior Jassirae Ordonez were the Academy students who danced hula in the parade. They are both dancing for a community hula troupe called Na Maka O Pu’uwai Aloha Hula Halau.

Wharton said it was thanks to her hula teacher that she had the opportunity to participate.

“My kumu was invited to help choreograph the hula…but she had been dreaming, for years, to bring her halau to the parade,” Wharton said. After discussing with the parade directors, her teacher’s dream came true, and the hula troupe was officially invited to take part in the Thanksgiving celebration.

For Wharton, it was not only her first time participating in the Macy’s parade but also her first time visiting the east coast.

Trailing behind the band and hula dancers was a special Hawaii-themed float, which brought some island spirit to New York. The float, created by Hilo company King’s Hawaiian, was decorated with giant plumeria flowers and a large volcano, which erupted with confetti.

Academy brings Kalikimaka cheer

Tue, 12/06/2016 - 12:09pm

It’s that time of year again–when Hawaiian language and dance students bring holiday cheer to the Academy–through the annual Aloha Kalikimaka performance.

The performance will be on Saturday, Dec. 10 from 3 to 6 p.m. in the auditorium.

Originally, the Christmas showcase only featured students taking Hawaiian Chant and Dance classes. However, just last year, teacher Jordan Asing decided to include students also taking Hawaiian language classes.

“(The audience) is going to see it, hear it and even taste the Hawaiian language, which is the most wonderful thing,” Asing said. “They will enjoy not only the language but also the culture of Hawaii.”

According to Asing, the Hawaiian mind is said to be one that wanted to learn a lot; so much so, that the capacity was quite large–in a sense that they had to memorize everything, including chants and songs.

Thus, in preparation for the performance, students have been practicing their numbers over and over. Asing says this was for to not only get accustomed to the pieces but to perpetuate the culture as well.

“My hope is…(the students) share the Hawaiian language and culture through song and dance, while also gaining a sense of appreciation for the culture of that land that they call home,” Asing said.

Academy gets decked out in Christmas cheer

Tue, 12/06/2016 - 12:05pm

Sacred Hearts Academy students are getting into the holiday spirit with an annual Christmas Spirit Dress Down Day.

The special event will be on Friday, Dec. 9 and is hosted by the Student Council.

Council President senior Raelynn Chu said, “We host a Christmas Dress Down Spirit Day every year because we love spreading Christmas cheer and putting everyone in a festive mood. It definitely takes everyone’s minds off the exams that are quickly approaching.”

Students and faculty may wear tops and sweaters that are red, green or white, or feature a Christmas-themed design. They may wear this with jeans.

As part of the dress-down day, they may also wear Christmas accessories, such as headbands, hats, jewelry, stockings and socks. Students must wear closed-toed shoes.

“Onsie” pajamas, leggings, yoga pants, sweatpants, shorts and pajama bottoms are not allowed.

Should students choose not to participate, they must wear their blue skirt or Friday attire uniform.

Additionally, the cafeteria staff will assist the council in spreading Christmas cheer by serving hot chocolate to students in grades 7 to 12 at recess. This will be at the Frear Courtyard.

“The best part of this event is definitely seeing everyone’s brightly colored clothing and feeling the positive attitude change in the atmosphere,” Chu said.

Behind-the-scenes of ‘Hawaii Five-0’

Tue, 11/29/2016 - 8:46am

Ever wondered what happens behind-the-scenes of your favorite television shows?

Students from Sacred Hearts Academy’s Video Productions/News Broadcast class got a chance to see what goes into the making of “Hawaii Five-0” last week. They toured the set at Hawaii Film Studios during an off-campus field trip.

Typically, fans selected through a Hawaii Five-0 auction are able to experience such a tour. However, the student tour was vamped up to include production insight. The show’s stage managers explained everything from lighting to special effects.

“This field trip was an invaluable experience for my students,” teacher Alyssa Myers said. “It gave them a look into the real-world of filmmaking and hopefully inspired them to one day be a part of similar large-scale productions.”

During the tour, students also found out interesting facts about “Hawaii Five-0.” For instance, in scenes at the morgue, actors always open the same refrigeration unit door because the others units do not actually open. To convey the chilled temperatures coming from that unit, producers use dry ice.

“Seeing what actually goes behind making one episode of ‘Hawaii Five-0’ was so intense,” senior and aspiring filmmaker Kayla Manz said. “And being on a real TV set just made me excited.”

The students looked forward to walking through familiar sets from the show, including the forensics lab, medical examiner’s room, interrogation room and McGarrett’s house. They also toured the wardrobe barn and construction mill.

Additionally, the students learned about different opportunities to working in Hawaii’s film industry.

Hawai’i Five-0, a Hawai’i-based television series, follows a small police task force in Hawaii. Leader of the Five-0 force Steve McGarrett (Alex O’Loughlin), along with his team, travel throughout the state to investigate various crime cases, from kidnapping to terrorism.

Finding the treasure of literature

Tue, 11/22/2016 - 2:57pm

This year, Sacred Hearts Academy’s lower school library raised more than $3,200 from its annual book fair.

The theme was “Pirate Book Fair: Where Reading Is the Treasure!” To celebrate the treasure of literacy, students, teachers and volunteers dressed up as pirates.

“(The Book Fair) is my favorite time of the year in the library because you see students’ eyes light up when they connect with a great book,” Lower School Librarian Laurel Oshiro said. “It was also a special time for parents to reminisce about their favorite books growing up.”

The goal of the book fair was to encourage students to have their own book collection at home. Each student created a wish list before the book fair began. They fulfilled their wishes by getting at least one book on their lists.

To get students excited about the book fair and inspire them to read, book character Clifford the Big Red Dog visited lower school classrooms and greeted families in the autoline.

During the book fair, students could participate in an ongoing estimation game, in which they guessed the number of pirate gold candy inside of a treasure box. Being only one candy away from the actual count of 153, first grader Claire Pinkerton won the contest and was able to take all of the chocolate candy.

Money raised from the book fair goes toward the lower school library and will help in purchasing 300 new books for students. In addition, students donated $35 from their loose change box, which will be used to buy 12 new books for the Palolo Elementary School Library.

Students ‘EMERGE’ as leaders at youth conference

Tue, 11/22/2016 - 2:44pm

Last week, Sacred Hearts Academy high school students, in addition to many other young people from across the state, congregated at the Hawaii Convention Center for the purpose of becoming better leaders.

The one-day event, called EMERGE, was hosted by the Center for Tomorrow’s Leaders (CTL) Ambassador program and brought together more than 600 students from over 30 public and private high schools across the state.

According to CTL, the conference was a time for the “next generation of high school leaders to unite and to be empowered.” The theme was Beyond the Horizon: A Vision For Yourself and Hawaii.

Students spent the day learning and interacting with their peers, becoming versed on the values of a competent leader. They also made new friends and connections with students from other schools. In addition, they listened to a wide range of speakers, including navigators from the Hokulea Worldwide Voyage and other leaders from a wide range of sectors.

Academy junior Angelyne Loiselle, who is also part of the Junior Division Council, received priceless leadership advice from EMERGE.

“The best piece of advice that I was given at the conference was that I can’t be a great leader if I’m not confident in myself,” she said. “In one of the sessions, I was told that ‘you’re only as good as your lowest plank,’ which made me realize that in order to lead others, I have to trust myself first.”

The  CTL Ambassador program is a Hawaii-central leadership program for the young people of Hawaii. It offers leadership development courses and includes a framework that is not only based on research but on core ethical values as well.

The Academy students were joined by Director of Development Emily Torres and Director of Student Activities Cleo Eubanks.

Grandparents Day ‘never gets old’

Tue, 11/22/2016 - 9:51am

High school students at Sacred Hearts Academy brought their grandparents to school earlier this month, for the annual celebration of Grandparents Day.

Grandparents Day was a way for the Academy to recognize the positive influence they have on their grandchildren. In addition, students showed gratitude to their grandparents for all that they have done for them.

Junior Haley Peterson says, “This is the 12th Grandparents Day my grandparents attended, and it never gets old. I appreciate the school hosting this day because I get to spend time with my grandparents at school.”

Students in 7th to 9th grade had a slightly different schedule than those in 10th to 12th grade. However, both groups had a “Thank You to Our Grandparents” paraliturgy in the gym.

All students and grandparents were then dismissed to their homerooms for a potluck and activities planned by each homeroom.

While most homerooms had an assortment of different foods, some treated their grandparents to an omelette and waffle bar.

Junior homeroom teacher Kinga Wojtas says, “I think we had a lot of fun. I enjoyed both the Pictionary and Just Dance games. The grandparents actively participated…and overall, I think we had a successful day.”

To top the day off, grandparents received a gift from the school as they left campus.

Salmonella outbreak linked to limu

Tue, 11/22/2016 - 9:42am

Recently, a salmonella outbreak has affected 14 adults and children on Oahu, with four requiring hospitalization, as of Nov. 8.

The recent outbreak has been thought to be linked to limu, or seaweed, prepared with a raw fish known as poke.

After an investigation by the HDH, according to KITV News, the source of the salmonella outbreak was traced to a Kahuku farm called Marine Agrifuture.

“Marine Agrifuture is a major distributor of ogo and sea asparagus in Hawaii, and its products may have been shipped to all islands, as well as the mainland (California and Washington state),” according to a department press release. “The department is still confirming all locations and states the product may have been shipped to.”

Since then, the farm was issued a cease and desist order and has contacted its distributors. The distributors have removed the seaweed from store shelves.  

The farm is awaiting the results of tests by the HDH to determine if the produce is still contaminated. If the results prove negative, Marine Agrifuture will be able to sell the seaweed again.

Times Supermarkets will stop using raw seaweed in its poke temporarily, due to the recent salmonella concerns.

Salmonellosis is an infection of the intestines caused by the salmonella bacteria. It can be contracted by eating food or drinking water infested with human or animal feces that have salmonella. It can also be contracted by touching salmonella-infested animals, according to the Hawaii Department of Health’s (HDH) Disease Outbreak Control Division.

The bacteria can spread through fecal-oral contact, by eating or handling food prepared by someone with salmonella and can often spread without noticeable symptoms 12 to 72 hours after being in contact with the bacteria.

Drumming up excitement for Thanksgiving Day Parade

Mon, 11/14/2016 - 12:04pm

As families start planning extravagant Thanksgiving feasts, marching band students at Sacred Hearts Academy are planning for a unique Thanksgiving festivity–the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Several members of the Academy’s band have been invited to perform in the Hawaii All State Marching Band, which annually participates in the holiday parade. The Lancers, along with other students from around the state, will be sharing the aloha spirit with all of New York City, as well as those watching on national television.

The student marchers are looking forward to sharing their talents.

“I thought it was a great opportunity to (not only) improve my marching but also reach a childhood dream,” said junior Ashley Zhang, who plays the French horn.

The band has been practicing with the Hawaii All State Marching Band since January. When compared to marching practice for school performances, students say, Macy’s parade practices are much more intense.

“The best part is meeting new people that share the same passions as me and being able to perform in New York City with my current and new friends,” said junior Kacey Chong.

The band will be performing “Tahiti Tahiti,” “Koni Au March” and “Drum of the Islands.” The group will be wearing bright aloha shirts and hula skirts.

In addition to performing in the Macy’s parade, sophomore Minami Nagahama is excited to “have a Thanksgiving dinner.” The dinner is for those who participate in the parade.

The parade will be televised live on NBC from 9 a.m. to noon. For more information, visit

Holiday fundraising benefits seniors

Mon, 11/14/2016 - 11:56am

During the holiday season, there are several opportunities for project graduation fundraising that will benefit the class of 2018.

Project graduation, hosted by the parents of a graduating class, is a unique celebration following the graduation ceremony. It was originally created by parents who wanted a safe, yet enjoyable, way for their children to celebrate their high school graduation.

The first fundraising opportunity is the Christmas tree sale, which is a partnership with non-profit organization Habilitat.

Although the deadline to order trees and wreaths has passed, those who have already ordered may pick up their Christmas decor at several locations around the island. Locations include Koko Head Elementary, Waimalu Elementary, Kapolei High School and several others.

Pick-up will be on Dec. 3 from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Poinsettia plants are also being sold for project graduation. Six-inch varieties of red, pink and ice punch (red and white) plants will be sold for $10 each. Orders must be placed by Nov. 10 and may be picked up at the Sacred Hearts Academy parking lot on Dec. 3 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. by showing an email confirmation.

To add to the holiday spirit, the class is selling passes for Kahala Mall’s Very Merry event. Passes are $5 each and give recipients access to exclusive savings and deals at Kahala Mall during the weekend of Dec. 2 to 4. For every pass they sell, students will receive $5 toward their project graduation fund.

Throughout the year, the class of 2018 will also have fundraising nights once a month through Papa John’s Pizza. On specified days, students will receive 25-percent of sales before taxes when they purchase from Papa John’s and turn in the price label on the box.

The most recent Papa John’s pizza night was on Nov. 3.

Clinton gets trumped

Thu, 11/10/2016 - 9:46am

Many from Sacred Hearts Academy, along with most of the state, stayed up late on the night of the 2016 elections. They were anxious to see whether incumbent Mayor Kirk Caldwell would relinquish his title to veteran Charles Djou and whether U.S Senator Brian Schatz could defend his title against Republican John Carroll.

Both Caldwell and Schatz came out the victors.

The main spotlight, however, was on the presidential election between former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee and businessman Donald Trump.

Following the closing of the polls in each state, political analysts were able to project the presidential winner; however, there were a handful of states with results that were “too close to call,” according to officials; others were easily dominated by either the democratic or republican candidate.

In the end, Trump prevailed and became the president-elect, with vice president-elect Mike Pence by his side. Trump received 279 electoral votes.

Meanwhile, Clinton earned 228 electoral votes, which was a surprise to many, including political experts who predicted she would win months prior. Clinton did, however, win popular vote by a small margin of 200,000 votes. This made her the fifth candidate to run for presidency, who won the popular vote but lost the electoral.

Trump, although being the first president-elect to have no prior military or government experience, is expected by all to fulfill his promises proposed during campaigns. Such promises include appointing a new Justice on the Supreme Court and revising the U.S. Immigration Policy.

Many Clinton supporters are expressing their disappointment on social media, as well as their worry for undocumented immigrants, the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community and Muslim-Americans.

“I’m shocked that (Trump) won and actually kind of upset,” junior Jaimee Manupuna said.

She, along with many other students, were outraged at Trump’s victory on the account of his racist and anti-feminist remarks during campaigns and debates.

While many were upset with the election outcome, some on campus looked forward to what Trump has to offer the U.S.

“I’m ecstatic (because) he supports religious liberty and the protection of the Constitution,” social studies teacher Mario Dilello said. “Trump may have his flaws, but I support his views to make America great again.”

Canned food drive inspires giving

Tue, 11/08/2016 - 2:33pm

Every year, in the spirit of giving, Sacred Hearts Academy hosts its annual canned food drive to give to those in need. This year’s drive goes from Nov. 1 to 17.

“The drive is meant to demonstrate the spirit of Thanksgiving, which is to give thanks for life’s blessings and also helping others,” Student Council Service Chair Mariko Galton said.

Students are asked to donate cans of nonperishable items to their homerooms. Such items include, spam, soups, peanut butter, beans, chili and vegetables.

“Though cans are small in size, their content holds a greater value,” Galton said. “It’s not about giving for the sake of it, but doing it (and) knowing that you’re making a difference by sharing something of your’s with those who are less fortunate.”

With this food drive, Galton’s goal is to collect as much food as possible so that families do not starve during the Thanksgiving holiday.

“I also hope that through the canned food drive students reflect on how lucky they are for the life they are given, since there are many who are not so lucky,” said Galton, on what she hopes to achieve with this canned food drive.

“A tip on giving is to give from the heart,” Director of Student Activities Cleo Eubanks said. “Give generously and give something that would eat on a regular basis.”

Homerooms that donate a minimum of 75 cans will be entered into a school-wide drawing. The homeroom that gets selected will receive Thanksgiving pies.

All donations will benefit three local food pantries, including Saint Patrick Church, Saint George in Waimanalo and transitional housing Loliana Hale.

In past years, the Academy has collected more than 2,000 canned goods during the drive.

Seniors bring Halloween spirit to Leahi Hospital

Tue, 11/08/2016 - 2:07pm

Earlier this month, seniors at Sacred Hearts Academy continued a recently established tradition by volunteering at Leahi Hospital.

Instead of visiting the facility in February to host the usual Valentine’s Day Carnival, students decided to share their Lancer hospitality a bit earlier. They brought ghosts and ghouls to the hospital in celebration of a Halloween Carnival.

Students donated stuffed toys to be used as prizes, monitored game booths, pushed residents in wheelchairs and gave “spooktacular” manicures. Upon arrival, the students received training on how to properly push a wheelchair to ensure the safety of residents.

The senior class was divided into two groups and switched between transporting residents to and from the event and facilitating the games.

Senior Elane Namoca said she is grateful for her experience.

“I loved seeing the smiles on their faces when we were with them,” Namoca said. “When you’re sitting in a facility for most of the day, there isn’t much excitement. When we were there, I think they were happy to see us.”

Senior division advisor Kimberlee Brown said that the seniors were able to take away something more than just a feeling of happiness.

“I hope that the seniors left with a sense of humility and desire to do more,” Brown said.  “There are few age groups in life, where you can truly make an impact on someone’s day, just by being there (or saying) a simple hello. The residents’ whole demeanor improved just by being around the seniors.”

Leahi Hospital, located near Kapiolani Community College in Honolulu, is a hospital, nursing home and adult day care facility. Originally known as the “Honolulu Home for Incurables,” the hospital was founded to aid patients with the bubonic plague, tuberculosis and other diseases.

This service day is the last off-campus community service project for the seniors this year.

Singing to the tune of a professional composer

Tue, 10/25/2016 - 3:03pm

Choir students at Sacred Hearts Academy have been getting ready for their fall concert next month. But what better way to master a song than to work with the composer himself.

Erik Whitehill, an elementary choir teacher and composer from Arizona, visited the Academy earlier this month to help the eighth grade intermediate choir students with their number, “Step By Step.”

“I had a wonderful day working with the choirs at Sacred Hearts,” Whitehill said. “There is a great atmosphere of ‘family’ that is very appealing.”

Whitehill has been writing and arranging music for more than 20 years. Prior to teaching, he was a full-time church musician and guitar teacher. He is also a longtime friend and colleague of choir teacher Zachary Moore.

“The singers have obviously come a long way with Mr. Moore, and it was fun to see the fruits of that labor,” he said. “The students were so welcoming and willing to work. It was a real joy.”

Whitehill assisted students with various musical concepts, such as phrasing, dynamics and articulation. Students from the Concert and Select Choirs were also able to work with the composer.

The songs students practiced with Whitehill will be performed at the fall choir concert on Nov. 22.

More than just baked goods at bake sale

Tue, 10/25/2016 - 3:01pm

Banana bread, brownies and butter mochi–all part of this year’s annual bake sale at Sacred Hearts Academy. But the sale is not all about the tasty goods; instead, coordinators say, it’s about giving back to the community.

“We have to reach out to the community and help in every way we can to uplift the way of life of the less fortunate among us,” Lower School Vice Principal Remee Tam said.

Proceeds from the bake sale go towards Aloha United Way (AUW), a nonprofit that deals with issues such as, homelessness, crime and poverty. This year, the sale generated $4,374.19. Tam said the school will give a check to AUW during morning flag assembly.

“Not only were we able to raise the funds for AUW, but due to the generous goods donated by parents, the school was also able donate the leftover baked goods to the Institute of Human Services (IHS),” Tam said.

IHS is dedicated to helping the homeless and offers housing for those facing a crisis.

According to Tam, “Team work and great coordination among students, parents and other school staff” were the key ingredients in making the event possible.