Want to make starting school easier for a first-year student? Consider becoming part of the Hānai Host Mentor program at UH. This is a pilot program of host families who are willing to “hānai” one or more incoming students and serve as a point of contact and informal support network for them. Volunteers are encouraged to coordinate an informal meeting with their hānai student at least once a month, for coffee or perhaps a cultural event or outing. There will be a conversation/orientation for participating faculty and staff to discuss possible ideas and ground rules for interacting with your hānai student at a later date. Hānai is the practice of taking someone in and nourishing them as your own, which in English is often referred to as informal adoption. If you are interested in joining the program and hosting a student, please complete the volunteer form
by June 15. You will be paired with a student as soon as there are sufficient volunteers and interested students. Typically a portion of incoming freshmen get lost to “summer melt” every year, so hopefully providing the students with a personal connection in the form of their hānai mentor early in the summer can help encourage students to arrive at UHM and also stay here. If you have any questions, please contact Debora Halbert, the Associate Vice Chancellor for academic affairs, at email@example.com. Also let Associate Dean Ania Wieczorek know that you’re getting involved, since she’s interested in organizing social gatherings for all the mentors and their students.