Aug. 26, 2010
President welcomes UH community to a new academic year
Aloha! I am pleased to welcome you all as we begin a new academic year here at the University of Hawaii.
It is always inspiring to see students begin their higher education journey. Whether you are a recent high school graduate, a returning student or coming to us to prepare for a career change, I am pleased to have you here as part of our University of Hawaii community.
I also want to welcome our faculty and staff and thank you for all that you do for our students and for the university as a whole. It is your talent and commitment that provide a solid foundation for higher learning for all of our students.
Over the past academic year, which was my first as president of UH, I had the privilege of getting to know many of you. I’m looking forward to the new school year as an opportunity to continue to get to know you and to hear more of your personal stories and perspectives on your experiences at the University of Hawaii.
The last school year indeed went by quickly, yet we have made progress on several of our goals. Our current enrollment is again at record levels, with an estimated 60,000 students attending classes throughout our 10-campus system this fall semester. And we are consistently working toward our goal of increasing the number of college graduates by 25 percent by 2015, particularly in critical workforce areas for the state of Hawaii. Beyond these numbers, our focus remains on the quality of the educational and intellectual experience of our students.
We also continue to work with our newly established president’s advisory council on technology to explore ways to improve our technology transfer and create new industries for Hawaii and jobs for our graduates.
And we are starting to see progress on our goal of renovating our facilities and infrastructure. With the support of the state Legislature, we have more than $300 million in capital improvement projects in the works. You may experience some temporary construction inconveniences right now, but we will all enjoy the end result—facilities that are more reflective of a 21st century institution built on excellence.
While many economic challenges remain, I am confident that, together, we will continue to make progress in the coming year. I am honored be part of our university community—and I thank you for the privilege of being able to serve as your president. I send you my gratitude and my good wishes for a productive and exciting new school year.