In recognition of his decade of support, Leeward Community College’s Chancellor, Manuel Cabral, was honored at the closing ceremony of the 10th Annual Hawaiʻi State Science Olympiad (HSSO) held on March 1 at the college’s Theatre.
Cabral received the first HSSO STEM Appreciation Award for “having the foresight to recognize the potential of the Science Olympiad program, how it could positively impact K–12 students and teachers throughout the State of Hawai‘i and for continuously and enthusiastically supporting the efforts and growth of Science Olympiad in Hawaiʻi and our mission to improve the quality of science, technology, engineering and math education for all students and schools.”
The HSSO Board also unanimously decided to rename the Middle and High School Spirit Awards officially as the Manuel Cabral Middle/High School Spirit Award, and the award is affectionately called “The Manny.” The Manuel Cabral Spirit Award went to Kahuku High and Intermediate School (Oʻahu) and Island School (Kauaʻi).
“I am still amazed by how the event has grown and flourished over the past 10 years. I still remember the first time we discussed the possibility of bringing the Science Olympiad to Leeward, with Franklin Allaire being the inspiration and catalyst, and Mike Lane and Roger Kwok being eager Leeward science faculty wanting to make it a reality,” said Cabral. “I am truly moved and honored to receive this recognition from this amazing group of educators.”
The emphasis of the Science Olympiad is on advanced learning in science through active, hands-on individual and group participation. HSSO began in 2004 with only two teams gathering on the Leeward CC campus. It experienced exponential growth, now requiring five regional tournaments on four islands to qualify teams for the state finals.