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Aloha from President Wright
with Chatt G. Wright

 

My own experience as a Peace Corps volunteer showed me that learning doesn’t only happen in a classroom. That’s why Hawai‘i Pacific offers a growing number of co-curricular activities. Many of these are organized by Student Life, and I described a variety of Student Life events in a column at the beginning of the fall semester. Today I’d like to use the College of Liberal Arts as an example of the different ways the programs in Academic Affairs connect with students outside of the classroom. Events offered by academic programs give students an opportunity to learn more about a particular major, get a better understanding of degree requirements and course options, learn about new opportunities in the profession, meet practitioners from the community, identify a faculty member who can serve as a mentor, and become acquainted with other students who share common interests.

Diplomacy & Military Studies brings to campus a number of guest presenters every year. English puts on both Student Readings and Faculty Readings, giving students a chance to hear poetry and other literary works created by faculty and their peers. History offers tours to historical/cultural locations such as ‘Iolani Palace, Washington Place, and other sites so that students can better understand the cultural history of Hawai‘i. This semester, Justice Administration will continue its Symposia on a variety of legal topics, featuring prominent attorneys and judges. Through our Mathematics Program, HPU has started a student chapter of the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME), which promotes and facilitates engineering support for national security. SAME provides students the opportunity to interact directly with young engineers and to hear guest speakers who play active engineering roles in the community. Our Music Program offers music retreats, rehearsal/pizza sessions, music readings, workshops for newcomers to the choir and orchestra, and this semester will be holding fundraising events to help finance the May 2008 trip to China. Psychology holds a monthly Psychology Symposium Series to introduce students to a variety of psychology topics. The Psychology Club is well-known for its wide variety of activities, including picnics, media nights, and workshops oriented to the interests and needs of psychology majors. This semester, building on an incredible turnout last year, the Psychology Program will be hosting its second annual Psychology Program Conference. This is a half-day event includes several speakers, including presentations by psychologists, psychiatrists, and other mental health practitioners. Last but certainly not least, Social Work supports a club that supplies much of the Thanksgiving dinner provided to the Weinberg Waimanalo Transitional Homeless Shelter.

As you can see, faculty and students are coming together at HPU to create a campus life beyond the walls of the classroom. There are even more events going on in Liberal Arts, and that’s just one college. Add them together with what’s going on in the other colleges and in Student Life, and you can see that there’s plenty to learn after class is dismissed.


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