SHA Kaleo

You are here

Subscribe to SHA Kaleo feed
The Voice of Sacred Hearts Academy
Updated: 2 hours 9 min ago

Perpetuating Hawaiian culture through hula and language learning

Wed, 03/16/2016 - 9:56am

The Academy’s hula class attended the 10th Annual Lei O Lanikuhonua Hula Festival on Feb. 26 at the beautiful Ko Olina on the west side of Oahu.

High school students from around the island were treated to a fun-filled day of Hawaiian language and culture as they were blessed with the opportunity to learn hula from some  of Hawaii’s notable kumu hula.

Hula instructor, kumu Jordan Asing, said, “I was delighted to hear many of my hula confidants say that my students were not only well-trained but also very respectful to the kumu, haumana and the aina as well. We were delighted to see Suzan Avina, an Academy alumna, who is a strong supporter of the Hawaiian culture. Her love and devotion to the perpetuation of the Hawaiian culture is marvelous.”

The Lei O Lanikuhonua Festival reaches out to students hoping that the experience impacts students in their hearts and lives in the future.

Senior Shadee Edralin said, “This was my last year attending the hula festival and over  the past four years, the festival has grown in popularity and importance. There are no prizes or competing hula halau in this hula festival. It is a hula festival unlike any other, where hula masters come together to share their knowledge and excite students to preserve hula and all things Hawaiian.”

Asing complimented his students, saying “a job well done to our girls that carried out their name as Na Wahine Waipahe, ‘the gentle-ladies,’ with elegance and grace.”

Scientist chills at South Pole

Wed, 03/16/2016 - 9:53am

Imagine living where the sun never sets for six months. Then, imagine going one mile below the Earth’s surface to study miniscule particles that can’t be seen by the naked eye. This was Dr. Naoko Kurahashi Nielson’s life in Antarctica.

Nationally renowned physicist and researcher, Nielson was selected to work over six months at the South Pole in the IceCube experiment with more than 300 scientists from 12 countries.

Nielson was the keynote speaker at the Academy’s Annual Science Symposium for girls in  fifth through eighth grades which featured workshops to inform girls from all over the island to the possibilities of careers in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) through hands-on activities.

Nielson, a California native and a physics major at the University of California, Berkeley, earned her PhD at Stanford University. She then spent four years doing postdoctoral work at the University of Wisconsin. She is an assistant professor today at Drexel University.

Despite her impressive resume, Nielson was not always optimistic about her studies in physics.

“I wasn’t the best at math and science in high school. I walked into my first college physics class and they started talking about vector calculus, which I had never even heard of before. Sometimes I thought I was in over my head by studying physics. I didn’t think I could do it,” she said. “I even thought of giving up physics.”

Still, Nielson struggled through her first two years of college trying to catch up to better prepared peers. After completing her bachelor’s degree, she went on to acquire her doctoral degree.

While at the University of Wisconsin where she conducted postdoctoral studies, Nielson joined the IceCube experiment, a neutrino particle observatory in Antarctica where scientists faced 10-minute showers, few fresh fruits and vegetables and a short 5-hour access to WiFi when possible.

 Passionate about science as a young student, Nielson throws herself into community outreach and educating girls and minorities about STEM fields.

“When people think of a scientist, they automatically think of a man. There’s this image of what a scientist ‘looks’ like, and people are sometimes surprised when I tell them I’m a physicist. I was one of only a few girls in my graduating class at Berkeley and Stanford, and the field is still highly male-dominated. My goal to change this stereotype and see more girls in STEM,” said Nielson.  

Through her own extraordinary experiences and tireless work in education, Nielson hopes to change the face and future of science, one girl at a time.

Photo credit: Drexel University

Seniors shine in HPU contest

Wed, 03/16/2016 - 7:25am

Seniors Elizabeth Fischer and Wei Yi Huang won four-year scholarships to Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) based on their participation in a scholarship contest to improve Hawaii.

The scholarship, HPUBiz4Good, is awarded to 10 graduating seniors and covers tuition for four years of undergraduate study. Award winners were asked to share ideas and take action for a positive social, environmental or economic impact in Hawaii.

Huang said, “I decided to apply for this scholarship because I wanted to stay in Hawaii for college and because I wanted the chance to take the burden of the cost of college off my parents’ shoulders. I’m very happy that I won and I think that this opportunity not only gave me full tuition, but it also proves to me that my ideas have been recognized by the judges and others as valuable.”

Over the course of three months, participants shared ideas through Instagram, Facebook and Twitter using the hashtag #HPUBiz4Good. They also attended a workshop to further extend their ideas and improve making their visions for Hawaii clearer.

Fischer said, “My issue revolved around human trafficking, and I had the idea at first to help victims and spread awareness. At the time, my idea was vague and underdeveloped but after I attended the workshop, I decided to create a store that would consist of products that addressed the issue of human trafficking. I thought to give the proceeds that I earned through my store to existing non-profit organizations to help the victims.”  

After attending the workshop, students submitted a 2-3 minute pitch video, a written proposal and a resume. At the end, HPU held a final competition where participants presented their ideas to a panel of judges.

Huang said, “I came up with the idea to create an app that can remind and motivate others to put on sunscreen because I found that this is an issue in Hawaii and not many people are aware of how badly sunlight can affect and damage our skin. My app is called SPF alarm and it will be free to download; however, I am still in the process of publishing it because I’m contacting sunscreen companies to allow coupons to be given through my app. Every time you put on sunscreen you will earn two points with the maximum of 20 points a day. These coupons will be the main thing to motivate people to put on sunscreen because the points will continue to add up and you’ll earn coupons to buy sunscreen.”

Judging for the competition was conducted in two parts. Part I included an evaluation of participants’ high school transcripts and test scores (40 percent of overall score),  the pitch video (10 percent), a summary of the proposal (10 percent) and a biography (10 percent). Part II was based on the final presentation to the judges which included an evaluation of participants’ creativity and originality (10 percent), feasibility (10 percent) and presentation skills (10 percent).

Fischer said, “I absolutely enjoyed the competition process because it was fun updating my online store and even meeting new people. There were so many participants who had amazing innovative ideas and it is such an honor and a blessing to receive such an award. I thank my amazing family and friends for being so supportive and encouraging me while I was working hard on this project.”

Fischer’s online store: http://stopdasale.bigcartel.com/

Japan trip in works for performing arts classes

Wed, 03/16/2016 - 7:10am

The Sacred Hearts Academy band and choir will be on their way to Japan during spring break 2017.

The tentative itinerary is an 8-9 day tour of several cities, including Kyoto, Osaka and Tokyo, according to band director Keith Higaki.

“I’m also trying to work in Hiroshima for the historical aspect for the students,” said Higaki.

Higaki also hopes to have students hear the Omiya Wind Orchestra, directed by internationally recognized conductor Toshi Akiyama. Omiya  features a highly regarded community band, a sister community band of the Honolulu Wind Symphony.                 

“We’re trying to coordinate something with them to watch a concert or a dress rehearsal,” said Higaki, “or host a clinic from Sensei Akiyama. We’ll see what’s available.”

The band and choir also want to visit Tokyo Disneyland,  temples in Kyoto,  castles of Osaka, and shop and eat in Tokyo.

At a meeting for the trip, the itinerary was discussed, detailing the times of departure, cities and events day-by-day.

The cost of the trip was also discussed. It will depend on how the U.S. dollar stacks up to the yen in the time leading up to the trip.

The number of students and adults also affects the price. A larger  group can actually make for a cheaper price, as larger groups mean group discounts.

Since a passport is necessary to travel internationally, students and parents who do not have one will need to obtain one before the trip.

“Many of these things are all ahead of time,” said Higaki. “It’s more than a year away. As we closely approach the one year mark, a few things will probably change as we get more information.”

Computer students win regional recognition

Thu, 03/03/2016 - 8:24am

Seniors Aimee Pak, Malia Libby, Weiyi (Chloe) Huang and Michaela Graves have been recognized as winners of the Award for Aspirations in Computing from the National Center for Women and Information Technology  (NCWIT) Hawaii region.

The four students were nominated by Math department chair and computer teacher Deborah Kula for their outstanding contributions to the field of technology.

Kula said, “This program is about encouraging women to get involved in technology fields and recognize those students who are already involved in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).”

Pak was also a runner-up for the national award.

“I felt extremely grateful. It was as if all the work I had put into robotics and programming was acknowledged,” she said.

In the future Pak wants to be an aerospace engineer.

“I want to be the best one at my job and a person who is in high demand for my skills,” said Pak.

The award provides more opportunities to learn computing and help in the community. Winners can also earn scholarships, internships or job opportunities.

Pak said, “I believe that this award will help me to physically show colleges and scholarship committees that I am a hardworking student.”

Kula herself was recognized as an Educator Awardee for her contributions. In addition to chairing the department, she is a mentor for the robotics team and Oahu Mathematics League (OML) adviser.

Kula said, “I think it’s nice for the students to be recognized and call attention to what they are doing. It also shows that you can be a normal person and be involved in STEM and computing.”

VEX IQ team takes on international competition for first time

Tue, 03/01/2016 - 12:21pm

The Academy VEX IQ team has emerged victorious, earning one of the spots representing Hawaii at the prestigious Worlds competition in Louisville, Ky. This is the first time a school VEX IQ team will travel to a national contest.

At the recent Hawaii State VEX IQ Championship on Feb. 6, 80 elementary and middle school teams competed for a spot in the Worlds competition. One elementary school, the Academy, and one middle school earned their trips to Kentucky.

Team 2436A is comprised of sixth graders Kammiee Ardo, Nanami Mehring and Prudence Russell and is mentored by Robb Mehring, Nanami’s father, and Academy robotics teacher and VEX IQ adviser Peter Park.

VEX IQ is a relatively new science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) program for elementary and middle school students ages eight to 14.

According to the Robotics Education and Competition Foundation (REC), “Students, with guidance from their teachers and mentors, will build a robot using the VEX IQ robotics platform to solve an engineering challenge that is presented in the form of a game. VEX IQ Challenge teams will work together scoring points in Teamwork Matches, and also display their robot’s skills individually in driver controlled and autonomous Skills Challenges.” The Challenge also includes a research project which features a written or media presentation.

At the World competition on Apr. 20 to 23, teams will compete in Bankshot, a challenge in which two robots work simultaneously to score points on a 4×8 field.

Hawaii will be represented by seven elementary school teams and seven middle school teams. Team 2436A will compete in Louisville as one of the elementary teams.

The Academy’s junior high VEX IQ team will attempt to qualify for a middle school slot in the  Worlds competition as well in upcoming state competitions.

According to KITV4 News, Hawaii has had a 300 percent increase in the number of robotics teams after VEX IQ was introduced to schools three years ago and a 50 plus increase of teams in the past year, one of nine states to do so.

At the Hawaii State VEX IQ Championship, Team 2436A earned the Excellence Award, the highest award presented in the VEX IQ Challenge, as well as the Programming Skills Championship Award.

According to the REC, the Excellence Award is given to the team that demonstrates overall excellence in the VEX IQ challenge. The Programming Skills Champion Award is given to the team with the top programming skills for robot performance.

Mehring said, “I have learned teamwork and respect for my friends and I also learned how to make new friends. It has been a great experience.”

Park was also awarded the Volunteer of the Year Award for outstanding participation and assistance in several of the year’s VEX IQ events. In addition to helping set up and take down fields at competitions, Park has also helped host VEX IQ scrimmages at the Academy Student Center as well as mentor coaches and teams from other schools.

“I am honored to win this award. I enjoy helping with VEX IQ competitions and coaching the students. It’s great to see them learn more about robotics and gain exposure to this new area of science at such a young age,” said Park.

Class tokens mark new role for juniors

Tue, 03/01/2016 - 12:17pm

The time has come for this year’s Junior Class to hold its traditional Junior Ring ceremony.

The event marks the juniors’ acceptance as upperclassmen. The ring ceremony has been a tradition of the Academy for over 70 years.

“It was way back in the day for me,” said theology teacher and alumna Leilani Asuncion-Tagupa. “I knew that by participating in the ring ceremony as juniors, we now became upperclassmen. So not only did we have a little bit more responsibility, we knew that, this is it, we’re one year closer to graduation.”

At the ceremony, juniors receive a class ring or a pin that is worn on their ties.

The juniors sit with their parents, walk to the front of the chapel and then receive the ring or pin from a parent.

Through the ceremony, many students feel a connection to the school’s graduates, some of whom are their own mothers, grandmothers or cousins.

“The ring ceremony was a nice way to receive an heirloom from your high school days,” said alumna, math teacher Elizabeth Gabriel. “It was nice to involve your parents by having them give it to us and go through the whole ceremony part of it, making it more meaningful than it just being a trinket that you were handed in homeroom.” Gabriel’s sister is also an alumna of Sacred Hearts.

The ring ceremony marks a practice of many schools and is often seen as a way to remember one’s school experiences as well as the time spent with classmates.  

“It’s a beautiful tradition for students, where the ring reminds them that they are part of the Academy family and that they are also now the leaders in the school,” said Campus Minister, Sr. Katherine Francis Miller, also an Academy graduate. “It’s really becomes a wonderful memento that reminds us of all of the wonderful young women that we shared life with, as well as our teachers and with the school.”

Academy representatives selected for new advisory committee

Mon, 02/29/2016 - 9:40am

Junior Kaycee Selga and sophomore Pakalana Kam are the Academy’s representatives for the Interscholastic League of Honolulu’s (ILH) new Student Advisory Committee (SAC).

The formation of the SAC  gives students a voice about issues regarding athletics in the school community and the state.

The SAC consists of two representatives from 22 schools in the ILH. The committee convenes multiple times during the first year with the first meeting on Feb. 15.

“Our goal is to develop our leadership so that we can take these skills back to our school and share our learning experiences to make our school, league and community a better place,” said Kam.

Selga was one of the few Academy applicants for the SAC.

“I am really excited to start working and be a member of the SAC committee. I am able to lead my school and create more opportunities for athletes around the island. Not only do I get to help and take part in this, but I can also learn new ways to handle time management, create new events and ways to organize them, and meet new people from private schools around the state,” said Selga.

Kam participates in volleyball, basketball, and track and field for the Academy and has previously played softball.

Selga participates in sporter and precision air riflery, soccer, and track and field. She also paddles during the summer outside of school.

Kam said, “I am very honored and excited to serve on this committee to represent my school as best as I possibly can. I am also enthusiastic and hopeful that we can make a difference in the ILH and push it in a positive direction.”

AP Japanese students use language to create bridge with native speakers

Mon, 02/29/2016 - 9:34am

College students from Kapiolani Community College (KCC) visited the Advanced Placement (AP) Japanese class at the Academy as part of their service learning requirement.

“College students have to do service learning and they need a certain amount of hours,” said sensei Nami Grafia. “The KCC teacher asked me if they can come to our class to do the service learning and we invited them.”

The students are native Japanese speakers studying English in Hawaii.

The KCC students discussed various topics with the AP students making use of the language students have been studying for four years .

“It was fun getting to know them. They were really fun to talk to,” said junior Samantha Ishihara. “I thought it was cool that I could understand what they were saying and they could understand what I was saying. I also thought it was interesting learning about their high school lives in Japan.”

KCC students will return three more times to speak with AP students.

“It was fun for them. They get to use their language too,” said Grafia. “Next time we’ll have a bit more structure. They have to discuss topics like global warming and about their futures. Those kinds of things are coming.”

For the next visit,  the class plans to have more structured topics, including post-graduation plans, technology in society and health.  

“Despite the language and age barrier, they were very friendly,” said junior Amily Tam. “Learning their opinions on issues such as global warming and working during high school was enjoyable.”

S Club supports Soroptimist International gala

Mon, 02/29/2016 - 9:31am

Ten Soroptimist club members volunteered their services at the Soroptimist International Annual Gala Fundraiser at the Koolau Ballrooms & Conference Center on Feb. 13.

The Lancer Soroptimist club is an offshoot of the adult organization.

This year the theme of the gala was Valentine’s Day. Club members greeted, assisted with registration and helped bidders during the Silent Auction.

Oahu Soroptimist International clubs help to improve the lives of women and girls through programs leading to social and economic empowerment. Each year clubs reward women who have overcome obstacles in their lives.

Junior Janelle Lauronal said, “I thought S Club was just another community service club, but really it’s a global organization that strives to empower women by means of access to education. I enjoyed helping at the Silent Auction the most as I was able to assist older women and help with the bidding. It was overall such a wonderful experience, witnessing people give back to a greater cause.”

Club adviser, Randy Fong, said, “This gala, organized by the Soroptimist International clubs on the island, is a huge fundraiser for the program and their monetary awards that they give out each year.”

Academy celebrates a better LIFE…week

Tue, 02/23/2016 - 9:03pm

Sacred Hearts Academy  celebrated Living in Faith Experience (LIFE) Week with special activities culminating in a mass and a walk to Palolo park.

The week kicked off with an afternoon assembly on Monday hosted by the Academy and St. Louis School’s LIFE teams.

Each year, the LIFE team focuses on a social issue. This year’s issue was human trafficking.

Courage House is a national movement trying to help young people from becoming victims of trafficking.

A local extension of the program,  Hoola Na Pua, or “healing the blossoms,” aims to help people who have been trafficked, by refurbishing and making available  a shelter on the North Shore. The shelter will be open to young people who have nowhere to go after they have been freed of the trafficking situation.

Many victims do not have families or places to go to after they are free. Hoola Na Pua’s goal is to be a place where such victims can be safe and heal from all of their physical and emotional hurt.

A  Hoola representative spoke at the assembly about human trafficking and the local shelter. The assembly also had activities for students hosted by the LIFE members.

On Tuesday, the Lancer Christian Community (LCC) hosted a meeting hosted by LIFE members. Food was served while the meeting members talked about what can be done in regards to human trafficking while forming fellowship.

On Wednesday, the circle activity consisted of signing a petition for unpaid labor to be made illegal to be sent to the legislature. Later in the day the Taste Tea truck came for the day’s “Taste (Tea)ing the Change” event, a fundraiser, for Hoola Na Pua.

Thursday featured the annual LIFE mass and LIFE walk.

After the mass students in grades 8-12 walked to Palolo park, where they interacted with schoolmates in organized games and activities.

“I think the LIFE walk is a wonderful time for the entire high school and middle school to bond together,” said Sr. Katherine Francis, the Campus Minister. “After mass, we go on this walk where we exercise and yell and scream and have fun and all kinds of things. When we get to the park, we play lots of games and just get our energy out and celebrate, which we seldom get to do. You’re so busy studying or all of these things but one day, you get to have fun and just play with all of your friends. I think that’s a wonderful time.”

Students had a free day Friday when Hawaii Catholic school teachers gathered for the annual  Annual Conference for Catholic School Educators (ACCE) convention, which included mass and a series of workshops.

Photo credit: Aileen Jornacion

Choir students perform in Hawaii All-State Choral Festival

Tue, 02/23/2016 - 9:04am

Academy concert and select choir students attended Nā Leo Hou: Hawaii All-State Choral Festival from Feb. 11-13 where Nā Leo Hou strives to showcase the best of choral education in Hawaii.

Over the course of two days, participants completed a musical sight reading test, learned a hula, and made new friendships.

Senior Ally Montiel said, “It is a bittersweet feeling when I attended my last choir festival this past weekend. I am grateful to have met amazing people from other schools around the island and the opportunity to sing with them at the concert.”

Nā Leo Hou brings together over 200 hundred high school singers from across the islands under the direction of an outstanding clinician. This year the participants learned five pieces with world-renowned conductor Tesfa Wondemagegnehu.

Wondemagegnehu is the conductor of the American Public Media(APM) Radio Choir and manager of the choral works Initiative for APM.He has performed in the United States and abroad as a tenor soloist. Wondemagegnehu hails from Minnesota.

Concluding the festival was a concert of the Nā Leo Hou Festival Choir on Feb. 13 at Central Union Church which featured adjudicated performances by several of the participating schools and community choirs.

The Academy choir performed “No Time” by Susan Brumfield and “Tundra” by Ola Gjello.

As the festival chorus took the stage, a calabash offering was taken, which helps support programs and festivals like Nā Leo Hou across the state.

Ohana luncheon celebrates families

Tue, 02/23/2016 - 9:02am

The Senior Ohana Luncheon is a long-standing tradition at the Academy. It is a time for seniors to show their appreciation to their families and enjoy the company of friends and classmates before graduation.

Senior Council member Mabel Cheng said, “Our theme for the luncheon was inspired by the Chinese New Year, which is the Year of the Monkey.”

Council members distributed red envelopes containing lucky candies and a quarter. The envelopes are a popular tradition for parents to give money to their children as a sign of happiness and wish them good luck for the new year.

The luncheon provided time to reminisce about the seniors’ years in high school and to look forward to the future.

Senior Kathryn Garcia said, “Graduation is going to come by so quickly and because of this I have developed a greater appreciation for my mother. I have spent more time with her and this luncheon was fun for the both of us. We even wore matching outfits and received many compliments from my classmates.”

This year’s event was held at the Manoa Grand Ballroom on Feb. 7.

Academy celebrates a better LIFE…Week

Tue, 02/23/2016 - 8:56am

Sacred Hearts Academy  celebrated Living in Faith Experience (LIFE) Week with special activities culminating in a mass and a walk to Palolo park.

The week kicked off with an afternoon assembly on Monday hosted by the Academy and St. Louis School’s LIFE teams.

Each year, the LIFE team focuses on a social issue. This year’s issue was human trafficking.

Courage House is a national movement trying to help young people from becoming victims of trafficking.

A local extension of the program,  Hoola Na Pua, or “healing the blossoms,” aims to help people who have been trafficked, by refurbishing and making available  a shelter on the North Shore. The shelter will be open to young people who have nowhere to go after they have been freed of the trafficking situation.

Many victims do not have families or places to go to after they are free. Hoola Na Pua’s goal is to be a place where such victims can be safe and heal from all of their physical and emotional hurt.

A  Hoola representative spoke at the assembly about human trafficking and the local shelter. The assembly also had activities for students hosted by the LIFE members.

On Tuesday, the Lancer Christian Community (LCC) hosted a meeting hosted by LIFE members. Food was served while the meeting members talked about what can be done in regards to human trafficking while forming fellowship.

On Wednesday, the circle activity consisted of signing a petition for unpaid labor to be made illegal to be sent to the legislature. Later in the day the Taste Tea truck came for the day’s “Taste (Tea)ing the Change” event, a fundraiser, for Hoola Na Pua.

Thursday featured the annual LIFE mass and LIFE walk.

After the mass students in grades 8-12 walked to Palolo park, where they interacted with schoolmates in organized games and activities.

“I think the LIFE walk is a wonderful time for the entire high school and middle school to bond together,” said Sr. Katherine Francis, the Campus Minister. “After mass, we go on this walk where we exercise and yell and scream and have fun and all kinds of things. When we get to the park, we play lots of games and just get our energy out and celebrate, which we seldom get to do. You’re so busy studying or all of these things but one day, you get to have fun and just play with all of your friends. I think that’s a wonderful time.”

Students had a free day Friday when Hawaii Catholic school teachers gathered for the annual  Annual Conference for Catholic School Educators (ACCE) convention, which included mass and a series of workshops.

 

APUSH visits Iolani Palace

Wed, 02/10/2016 - 9:34am

AP US History students will be traveling back in time to old Hawaii during their visit to Iolani Palace, the residence of the last Hawaiian monarchs, King Kalakaua and Queen Liliuokalani.  

AP teacher Alex Adkins says the field trip will teach students about imperialism in Hawaii.

“We’ll be exploring the overthrow of the monarchy and how Hawaii developed after its annexation,” said Adkins.

Adkins and counselor Cleo Eubanks will chaperone students.

Eubanks is elated to be visiting the palace.

“I’ve lived in Hawaii all my life and have never been inside Iolani Palace,” she said. “I’m excited to see how well preserved the establishment is!”

The field trip is scheduled for Feb. 11.

Summer science program seeks high school applicants

Fri, 01/29/2016 - 11:26am

Windward Community College (WCC), in partnership with the Pacific Center for Environmental Studies (PaCES) and Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB), is offering a Summer Environmental Science Program, open to high school students in Hawaii.

The 6-week curriculum will give students an education and training about Hawaii’s ecosystem. Participants will study a variety of subjects, including water quality analyses, ocean current mapping, aquatic microbiology, weather and climate, and environmental archaeology, among others.

Participating students will earn four college credits and a $1,000 scholarship.

The PaCES-HIMB program goals include promoting “environmental awareness and understanding, especially about the Kaneohe Bay environment,” showing “how modern science, integrated with traditional knowledge, can provide solutions to environmental problems” and exposing “high school students to academic and career opportunities in environmental science.”

The program puts an emphasis on studying and incorporating  traditional Hawaiian practices, such as loi farming and fishponds, into science.

The rigorous process includes an application completed by the student and a parent or guardian, and teacher and community member recommendations.

Applications will be evaluated and potential participants interviewed. The maximum number of students selected will be 24. Deadline is Feb. 29.

Senior chosen second runner-up in Distinguished Young Women Scholarship Program

Fri, 01/29/2016 - 11:23am

Senior Shannon Domingsil represented Sacred Hearts Academy in this year’s Distinguished Young Women (DYW) Scholarship Program, a national program for high school girls that promotes and rewards scholarship, leadership and talent.

A panel of judges evaluated and reviewed participants’ high school transcripts and test scores. Points were awarded based on interview (25 percent of overall score), talent (25 percent), scholastics (20 percent), fitness (15 percent) and self- expression (15 percent).

Named second runner- up, Domingsil won a $2,250 cash scholarship and a $12,500 tuition scholarship to Hawaii Pacific University.

Domingsil said, “I am extremely grateful for this experience because I have learned so much about my potential, and the mock interviews and training we had gave me so many more skills that I will use in the future. I am happy that I met 23 amazing, talented young women from schools across the island.”

Domingsil began preparing for the competition three months in advance. Training for the actual program included rehearsals, mock interviews and fitness training.

“At first I didn’t want to participate in this competition because it took up a lot of time and it was tiring, but as we kept getting closer to the actual day I became very excited. All of the participants began to bond so well and we were all so incredibly supportive of each other and constantly cheered each other on because even though this was a competition, we were all winners and they all deserved to win.”

Iolani senior Amy Uehara was selected the state winner who will compete in the national finals in Mobile, Alabama.

Domingsil said, “There were so many great memories and one of the best ones happened when everyone gathered in the middle where we met for a group hug and we all just started crying tears of joy. It was such an amazing moment because not only were we proud of our winner, we were all so proud of ourselves because after all of our hard work we finally did it. We finally performed and the months of preparations that led up to this moment made it all worth it.”  

The event was held at the Salvation Army Kroc Community Center in Kapolei on Jan. 18.

Catholic school students can recognize teachers via selfies

Thu, 01/28/2016 - 8:40am

The Hawaii Catholic Schools Office wants students to get excited for the upcoming annual Catholic Schools Week by holding a “Take A Selfie With Your Teacher Contest.”

The office is asking students in Catholic schools to caption a selfie with their favorite teacher for a chance to win two $100 Visa gift cards, one for themselves and the other for their teacher.

Students in kindergarten to grade 12 in a Hawaii Catholic school are eligible to participate. Their favorite teacher must also be teaching at the school where they are currently enrolled. Further terms and conditions of the contest can be found here.

Students entering the contest must submit their entry through the “Selfie Contest” tab on the Hawaii Catholic Schools Facebook page, which can be found here. The contest is ongoing and ends on Feb. 3.

Language students begin new year with Japanese tradition

Fri, 01/22/2016 - 8:31am

Japanese language classes began the New Year with writing calligraphy, a popular tradition for many students in Japanese elementary schools.

In ancient Japan, Jan. 2 was called “Kotohajime,” which means to begin the New Year activities. On this day the Japanese did “Kakizome,” the first writing or drawing of the year as a wish to greatly improve their writing and drawing. On paper they wrote their New Year resolutions or a word related to the New Year.

Japanese teacher Nami Grafia said, “This tradition spread to ordinary citizens of Japan and became the common practice of doing calligraphy during the New Year season. This tradition is giving a role to Japanese calligraphy in our modern society. Calligraphy practice helps us to deepen the understanding of how Japanese characters are made and how to write the characters properly. It is also great practice for patience and being calm and focused.”

Academy students carefully wrote the “morning of New Year’s Day” in kanji which was then posted in classrooms. Afterwards, students voted for the “most authentic.” The winners were juniors Ellena Igari and Amily Tam and freshman Ferrari Hiraga.

Igari said, “We learned how to write traditional Japanese calligraphy with the proper strokes. I enjoyed doing this activity because it was my first time writing calligraphy and I was really surprised when I placed first for most authentic.”

Photo credit: Nami Grafia

Lancer Robotics seizes “Stronghold” in latest competition

Fri, 01/22/2016 - 8:22am

The high school robotics team is ready to vie in the 2016 First Robotics Competition (FRC) challenge, Stronghold.

The game puts high school teams through different defense maneuvers in a land-mined field. At the same time, students must score goals by rolling and throwing “boulders” into their opponent’s tower.

Academy team members attended the kickoff event on Jan. 9 at Mckinley High School where the game premiered live from the East Coast. From that date, teams have six weeks to build, program and wire robots to contend with the Stronghold challenges.

Robotics teacher Peter Park expressed his enthusiasm as the new challenge begins.

“I’m excited to see what the team can conjure up in the building period and how they will be strategizing their moves.”

The Lancer Robotics team 2437 will be traveling to Long Beach, Calif., to compete in the FRC Los Angeles Regional from Mar. 9 to 12. After its return, the team competes in the Hawaii Regionals from Mar. 30 to Apr. 2 at the University of Hawaii.

Pages