muneno meeting with a student
Jolene Muneno provides academic advising to a student.

Jolene Muneno of the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Education Office of Student Academic Services (OSAS), was selected for the Region 9 National Academic Advising Association’s (NACADA) Excellence in Advising New Advisor Award. She will be recognized at NACADA’s Region 9 Virtual Conference in March.

Jolene Muneno
Jolene Muneno

“I feel honored and grateful to everyone who has supported me as a new advisor, and I feel privileged every day to be able to guide students during such an influential time in their lives,” Muneno said. “From my first day here, everyone at OSAS has made me feel incredibly welcome and supported. I couldn’t have earned this recognition without them.”

An academic advisor with OSAS since 2018, Muneno was selected out of a competitive pool of applications and nominations for her outstanding interpersonal relations skills, professional practices and development and documented success.

Muneno’s nominator, OSAS Academic Advisor Alyssa Kapaona, said, “Every day, I feel lucky to work with someone like Jolene. Students love to meet with her, colleagues are excited to work with her, and her accomplishments speak for themselves. Some of her many contributions, above and beyond our core OSAS functions, include training faculty in Youth Mental Health First Aid, creating video modules to introduce students to their major, and designing an online new student welcome presentation during the global pandemic.”

Muneno said she did not go to college thinking she would be an academic advisor, but she realized as she worked in higher education that she really enjoyed working one-on-one with students. Through advising, she has been able to connect with students and help them realize their goals.

“This honor is truly well-deserved, and we are thrilled that Jolene is being recognized for her outstanding work,” OSAS Director Denise Nakaoka said. “She strengthens our unit with her creativity, work ethic and consistent drive toward excellence. The award description and criteria fit her perfectly, and we are truly fortunate to have her on our team.”

This recognition is an example of UH Mānoa’s goal of Enhancing Student Success (PDF), one of four goals identified in the 2015–25 Strategic Plan (PDF), updated in December 2020.