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Scholarship donors and student recipients came together to celebrate the gift of education at the annual University of Hawaiʻi Scholarship Celebration at Stan Sheriff Center in March. Students enjoyed having the opportunity to personally thank the generous people who have invested in their success, and donors were delighted to meet the people whose futures they are impacting.

UH Vice President of Advancement and UH Foundation CEO Tim Dolan said, “Scholarship assistance does so much in addition to helping meet critical financial needs. Scholarships say, ‘I want you to succeed and I believe in you.’ There is no greater gift.”

In 1976, the first permanently endowed scholarship was created at the UH Foundation to benefit students attending UH. Since then, providing access to higher education through private gifts has become a tradition. Today, the foundation manages more than 2,000 student aid accounts.

scholarship celebration 2020
The celebration was held at Stan Sheriff Center.

Last year, the UH Foundation distributed more than $11.6 million in student aid to 3,863 students statewide.

“Philanthropic scholarships help us keep more local students in Hawaiʻi so they can pursue their studies at home and engage in our local communities to work as our teachers, healthcare providers, engineers and in every essential sector in our state,” said UH President David Lassner. “By alleviating some of the financial burden of higher education, these awards help our students graduate on time with the knowledge, skills and ability they need to advance their families and fulfill their dreams.”

Scholarship recipient, proud UH alumna and respected child welfare social worker Yolanda Domingo moved attendees when she shared how scholarships changed her life and helped her rise above life’s challenges. Domingo’s challenges included raising her family while fighting cancer and receiving a heart transplant. Yolanda earned her liberal arts degree from Leeward Community College, her bachelor’s degree in social sciences from UH West Oʻahu, and her master of social work from UH Mānoa, all with the help of multiple scholarships.

UH Foundation Senior Executive Director of Scholarship Development Malia Peters said, “Our donors and students are the heartbeat of our scholarship program. The impact on one life changes a family, when you change a family you change a community, when you change a community you change the world.”

—By Kelli Trifonovitch

student scholarship recipients
The UH foundation helps students accomplish their college dreams.
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