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Kurt De La Cruz, a senior academic advisor at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo, was awarded first runner-up for his presentation at the 2015 National Academic Advising Association’s (NACADA) Region 9 Conference held in Honolulu in March. De La Cruz’s presentation, The Four Fishes: An Island Perspective Designed to Enhance Your Advising Practice, was voted first runner-­up out of 63 total presentations that were offered at the conference.

“The lessons are based upon an old Kaʻu practice utilizing fishes, or ocean creatures, as a way for people to better understand and get along with one another,” explains De La Cruz. “Over the years, I’ve shaped it to fit many different types of groups and organizations.”

“Being selected as a presentation was an accomplishment in itself as this conference received 135 proposals,” wrote Kiana Shiroma and Rayna Tagalicod, co-­chairs of the conference, in their letter to De La Cruz about the recognition. “This set a record for the highest number of proposals submitted to any regional conference in NACADA history!”

Shirona and Tagalicod add, “Kurt’s recognition brings much prestige and recognition to UH. This conference featured attendees from mainly California and Nevada but from other states across the nation as well. Not only was Kurt able to represent the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo and the rest of the University of Hawaiʻi System campuses, but advisors from other states as well.”

For the full story, visit the UH Hilo Stories website.

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