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Frances Davis Award for Undergraduate Teaching 2002-2006 Award Recipients

Davis Award Winner

Colette Higgins, headshot

Colette Higgins

Colette Higgins has been an instructor of Hawaiian History at Kapi‘olani Community College for 10 years. She opens students’ eyes to the history and culture of Hawai‘i with genuine passion for the subject and techniques that guarantee retention. Higgins allows students to experience history through detailed and fascinating stories that illuminate details and connections between historical figures so that relationships and motives for action are easily comprehended and recalled. Reading assignments offer a variety of views and highlight conflicting 'facts' for students to debate.

Higgins’ approachability opens channels of communication by making students feel comfortable sharing questions and comments.

One student wrote, "Despite her small stature, Higgins voice booms across the classroom, keeping all eyes focused on her. Furthermore, Colette uses humor in her lectures to provide greater enjoyment with learning as well as for spending whatever time is necessary to guarantee that students understand the subject and the information presented." She ensures that everyone understands each concept before moving on to the next.

As a graduate of Kapi‘olani Community College, Higgins values the community college experience and conveys that to students, to whom she relates with enthusiasm, humor, patience and commitment to their success.

The Frances Davis Award for Undergraduate Teaching recognizes dedication and demonstrated excellence as teachers of undergraduate students. It was established as a memorial to the late Frances Davis, who taught mathematics at Leeward Community College and UH Manoa for 19 years.

Select a recipient for more about that individual, or view the most recent winners.


Anthony Kilbert, headshot
Anthony Kilberk
Mai Wong, headshot
Mai Wong


Colette Higgins, headshot
Colette Higgins
Barbara Hotta, headshot
Gordon Scott Lee
Leslie Lyum, headshot
Leslie Lyum
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Mark Panek, headshot
Mark Panek