three girls
Megan Kaneshiro, middle, enjoys a UH football game with friends.

It’s been more than a year since the first #MakeManoaYours social media contest winner Megan Kaneshiro embarked on her journey at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Surprised with a large check for a semester of free tuition courtesy of the UH Federal Credit Union in May 2019, Kaneshiro became the third generation in her family to attend UH.

“Looking back, winning the contest helped me have a positive and confident start in this new chapter of my life,” said Kaneshiro. “I was able to try courses in my first semester that I don’t think I would have if I hadn’t won the contest.”

Now an exploratory business major, Kaneshiro’s motivation to be the next generation at UH Mānoa was first inspired by her grandmother. With fond memories of attending UH sporting events as a child with her family, there was no other place she wanted to pursue her passions than at UH Mānoa. The #MakeManoaYours contest afforded Kaneshiro the opportunity to follow her dreams and pursue her academic goals at home.

“This first year was a great experience! The first semester I stepped out of my comfort zone by taking a glass blowing art course and met some amazing people there,” remarked Kaneshiro. “During my second semester, I focused more on tackling courses that are required to get into Shidler College of Business and also started learning French, which is a language I have always wanted to learn.”

Kaneshiro also feels that UH Mānoa fosters an inspiring and accepting learning environment.

“No other college brings together young scholars from such diverse cultures,” she said. “I know that college can be intimidating at the beginning, but UH Mānoa has helped to kick-start this exciting new chapter of my life.”

The opportunities are endless and Kaneshiro is making it all happen at Mānoa.