The Civil Beat Editorial Board Interview: University Of Hawaii Executives - Honolulu Civil Beat

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Civil Beat Editorial Board

The members of The Civil Beat Editorial Board are Chad Blair, Patti Epler, Nathan Eagle, Kim Gamel, John Hill and Matthew Leonard. Opinions expressed by the editorial board reflect the group’s consensus view. Not all members may participate in every interview or essay. Chad Blair, the Politics and Opinion Editor, can be reached at

UH President David Lassner defends his leadership against criticism from three state senators. “I am proud of the work that we’re all doing,” he says.

Editor’s note: The Civil Beat Editorial Board spoke on Monday with University of Hawaii President David Lassner, UH Manoa Provost Michael Bruno and UH CFO and Budget Vice President Kalbert Young. This interview has been edited for length and clarity and for future stories.

David Lassner began by answering a question about his reaction to a front-page report in the Sunday Honolulu Star-Advertiser that three key state senators — Donovan Dela Cruz, Donna Mercado Kim and Michelle Kidani — were calling for him to resign amid criticism that he lacks vision and has been there too long. The Senate issued a press release later that day quoting the senators as saying they didn’t call for Lassner to resign outright but were responding to feedback. “It’s the Board of Regents call,” they said.

Lassner: We were notified that the report would be coming out on Friday. I gave a statement that was used in the Star-Advertiser story. I did not know this was happening, although clearly the relationship has been difficult. I am proud of the work that we’re all doing. I think the university’s in a very strong position — as a system, as UH Manoa, and I think the team has excelled through really difficult conditions in Covid. I don’t know that any part of the state did better than we did during Covid in navigating that process and serving our students. And you saw the quote from UHPA (the faculty union). We worked hard with our primary union and also with the Hawaii Government Employees Association to make sure we could function through the pandemic.

We’re at a great place right now. Enrollment at UH Manoa is back. Michael (Bruno) can talk about that some. We had the best year in our history in research. We had the best year in our history in philanthropy. So the community is investing in us through philanthropy and the federal government is investing in us for the quality of the work we do. So I just have to disagree with their characterization.

The Civil Beat Editorial Board met with UH Budget Chief Kalbert Young, left, UH Manoa Provost Michael Bruno, center, and President David Lassner on Monday. Financing and the Legislature dominated the conversation. (David Croxford/Civil Beat/2023)

What do you think drives it? I mean, you’re right smack in the middle of a legislative session in which you have a lot of priorities, which we will talk about later. I don’t have to tell you about the historic challenges — the tension — that has existed between some in the Legislature and the university. It has primarily been certain senators, of course — Donna Mercado Kim, Michelle Kidani, Donovan Dela Cruz — all very influential. What do you think is driving this?

I think I don’t like to speculate about other people’s motives. I think you should ask them.

Do you think it’s going to hurt your relations going forward this session?

It’s certainly not going to help. Kalbert?

You’re the point guy on the budget and the funding.

Young: I think everybody reading that article does get a sense that this is not a new sentiment. And I think, trying to be impartial about it, looking at how the university has fared at the Legislature over the last several years, I don’t think that this should anticipate helping us or maybe not even hurting us, because, frankly, I don’t think the university has gotten much from the Legislature over the last several years. And even if it’s not attributable to just the Senate, I think it kind of indicates the overall position or how much this element of the Senate influences the overall Legislature.

So I think I’m hearing that you’re worried that it may be a little bumpy going forward.

Young: I’ll call it par for the course.

Can the three of you each tell us what’s on your your plate right now, top of mind? And then I want to move into the priorities at the Legislature. So, Mr. President?

Lassner: I think I will maybe use my two moments of fame here with you to just highlight our new strategic plan. I’m very excited. It’s a systemwide strategic plan. We developed it in a relatively short period of time, during the last calendar year, essentially from the beginning to the end. And we used a lot of technology to gather input. We did focus groups with community members and leaders. We did electronic town halls and we did surveys. And I’ll just say I think it is pretty well accepted across the university and it’s usually more of a challenge. And I think for me, what it really expresses is that the whole university community is willing to dig in and focus on what Hawaii needs coming out of the pandemic. And I think for almost all of us in the university, we really came to appreciate that the state can’t succeed without UH focusing on what the state needs.

We have four priorities.

We’re focused on educating more students. The decrease in the going rate of our public high school graduates into post-secondary education and training is very discouraging. And we think it’s something we have to help the Department of Education with. They can’t do this alone. The last number I saw was that 51% of our public high school students aren’t going on to anything after high school. And that really does not bode well for our future. So bringing that number up is a priority, and at the same time looking at adults and the opportunities that they need if they didn’t go when they were fresh out of high school. if they need upskilling to get a better job — those sorts of things.

Kalbert Young, center, speaks about UH enrollment. (David Croxford/Civil Beat/2023)

Second is a variation of that, but a real direct focus on workforce. And the obvious one is the health care workforce. And we’re working closely with Healthcare Association of Hawaii — Hilton Raethel’s group — focusing initially on areas like nursing. We’ve had a focus on docs for a number of years, especially neighbor island docs. Michael’s working on a project looking at health care holistically. But also we’re looking at teachers and really trying to dig in to say what is our job? And again, as a university system in making sure Hawaii has the workforce we need and particularly in the living-wage jobs that we know are so precious.

The third area is — these are not in order — is our focus on the economy and developing the economy through our research and innovation program. And we identified a set of very specific hubs where Hawaii has a pretty significant capacity and/or competitive advantage. And we think those are areas where if we beef up our faculty capacity and our instructional capacity, that both our faculty and students can create economic opportunity in the state. So you’ve been around a while. How many times have we said we need to diversify our economy?

By any metric that one uses to measure a university’s performance, Manoa is doing extraordinarily well.

Michael Bruno

That was actually my first question — “Where have I heard this before?” And by the way, this was approved by the Board of Regents just a few months ago, right?

Lassner: Yeah. In November in Hilo. So this time, one thing that’s different is we are not talking about bringing in Google or Microsoft or somebody. We’re basically saying Hawaii needs to do this ourselves and that it will be our university students and our faculty who are going to drive it with both their their knowledge of something — and it could be anything, ag, energy, sustainability, sea level rise, data science, visualization. These are areas where our faculty excels .We can pass this on to our students and at the same time instill in them entrepreneurialism and innovation. And instead of thinking about Google bringing us 1,000 jobs, let’s start thinking about 100 graduates each creating 10 jobs with a small company, and the company will go out of business and then they’ll start another one. But thinking about that sort of ecosystem, instead of somebody coming in from outside and saving us. So that’s that’s a little bit of a new slant on an old, old story, I would say.

Well, speaking of an old story, I did have one more follow up on the four imperatives. But what’s the fourth?

Lassner: The fourth is our kuleana to Hawaiians in Hawaii.

And this, interestingly, I think grows out in some ways of the insights during the Thirty Meter Telescope protests, but not exclusively. We’ve always had a focus on the success of our Hawaiian students and trying to eliminate what we call equity gaps. Are they enrolling in proportion to our population? Are they graduating in proportion to the rest of our students and so forth? What we’re really looking at this time, a little more is as a strategy for the university to say there are a whole bunch of challenges that many Native Hawaiians have faced in the state that really go back to the overthrow. Those are health care, education, income. And the university has a really important role to play in our whole state coming to terms with what happened and how will we address that. And really our regents have been pretty active in discussing this as well.

“Expanding nursing education, expanding medical education for doctors.” During Covid we all saw the news reports having to bring in health care workers from out of state in order to take care of our own people here. And that, too, is something we’ve been talking about, particularly in remote areas. So I wondered if you might touch a little bit more (on that).

Lassner: That is a big part of what drove that second imperative that I talked about.


Lassner: Yes, what we learned through Covid and the way that drove up those costs and the reliance on the traveling nurses. Absolutely. But I think what we tried to do is say — so this one is very visibly in our faces right now — the teacher shortage has been in our faces for decades. And I think what we are saying as a university is we need to make these things priorities beyond other things that we do that are also important.

Tell us what’s on your priority list for the Manoa campus.

Bruno: Well, to begin with — and David alluded to this — I’d say it this way: By any metric that one uses to measure a university’s performance, Manoa is doing extraordinarily well. We had a second record enrollment in a row this past fall. Our research broke a record — over $360 million in grants brought into the university last year. For a university with under 20,000 students, that’s amazing. If you look at the universities above us, they all have 40,000, except for MIT. So per faculty, it really is an amazing number.

UH Manoa Provost Michael Bruno said the campus punches above its weight when it comes to attracting research grants. (David Croxford/Civil Beat/2023)

We also broke a record for graduation rates in the same year. Record philanthropy. When Chan Zuckerberg gives us $60 million to Manoa — $50 million for ocean research and $10 million for the medical school — that’s that foundation saying to the world, “We trust that this money will be well spent and impactful.” So, we’re on the rise.

At the same time, there’s all kinds of things happening at the Legislature, but we are very proud of where we are. We do have challenges associated with everything I just said. To put it succinctly, compared to the semester in which we shut down — the spring of 2020 — this semester, we have 2,000 additional students on the Manoa campus, which is crazy.

That seems surprising to me. I would have thought it would have gone in the opposite direction.

Bruno: Well, that’s where most of our peers have experience. I don’t know. I think there are a number of explanations for that, but I think now we’re into that time when we can discount the influence of the pandemic and other external influences, budget and others. I think it’s simply that the word is getting out more and more on the value and the quality of the instruction and the research at Manoa. We are drawing from places we didn’t use to draw, states we didn’t use to draw from. So when I say increased enrollment, those enrollments are across the board. More resident, more nonresident. More international. More from the mainland. So I think it’s just evidence that our stock is rising and that the word is getting out there.

Source: University of Hawaii News, Oct. 20, 2022

And that’s another thing that we need to do and keep pushing on. I think one thing that I’d like us to be better at is explaining to people why it matters. Why does it matter that you have a world-class research university in Hawaii?

Why does it matter?

Bruno: The president alluded to the economy (and) virtually every economy around that has found themselves in a need to and success in diversifying. Maybe the most recent example would be San Diego. None of them have that success without the direct involvement of their research university. The same with UCSD. Thirty years ago UCSD was not what it is today in terms of a research university, and with it the fortunes of San Diego, the city of San Diego. It used to be tourism and military. Now it’s not. The problems that we address are very place-based. Our faculty are very good at using our diverse population and our diverse environment to our advantage in addressing problems that are important to Hawaii and really the answers to which can be exported.

Could you give an example of a place-based problem that’s unique to here?

Bruno: So we are the world leader in what I would call as environmental microbiology. So we call it the microbiome and understanding the microbes that exist in all of the what we call life zones, from essentially tundra on the top of Mauna Kea all the way down to and including the coral reef environments in the deep sea. I mean, those things are within sight of each other. You can be in deep ocean and see the top of Mauna Kea. You don’t have that anywhere else on Earth.

So we are actively, aggressively sampling the environment, modeling it, understanding how humans impact that environment and how in turn the microbes impact human health. That’s the “one health” approach that a lot of people talk about these days, but we’re positioned better than any other entity in the world, really, to understand. So that’s a big thing. You’ll be hearing more and more of that.

I want to turn to Kalbert to ask you two things. How’s the financial solvency? And then by extension, what are you looking for from the Legislature this year?

Young: Well, I think every year, every year since we started coming to meet with (Civl Beat) annually, I would say each year the university has improved its financial sustainability. The numbers continue to look like improving, and going into the pandemic I would have guessed that it would have been a trying time to get through, however long the pandemic would have lasted. But coming out of the pandemic, like the state, like other states, other universities, other higher education institutions, we’ve actually done pretty well reacting to operations to afford to keep operations going during the midst of the pandemic, aided by federal stimulus funding. Enrollment has been stronger than most people would have predicted. All of those have helped to put us on a even stronger footing than it was going into the pandemic.

UH CFO and Vice President Kalbert Young said the Manoa’s campuses strong enrollment numbers after Covid took administrators by surprise. (David Croxford/Civil Beat/2023)

Is it possible off the top of your head to put a dollar figure, ballpark, on that federal Covid relief that you received?

Young: So UH got about $195 million in direct federal assistance. About 25% was actually just pure pass through to students. So it was congressional earmarked, directed that we would just flow it to general population.

What does that mean to “flow it” to the students?

Young: So for the $195 million, about $35 million, $45 million, had to be in the form of financial assistance to students. Not financial aid. It had to be financial assistance where we’re literally just handing out money from the federal government and just trying to push it through to students. But it couldn’t help the university operationally. And then there is another 25% of that money that we could have used for that same purpose, just as pass-through as financial assistance. Or we could have used it to augment emergency health and safety measures, which is for the most part what we had to do. And then the bulk of the rest of the money was to basically spur remote learning so we could use it to help build, you know, IT infrastructure, provide laptops, connectivity for students and create platforms for distance learning.

That’s a permanent change, I would imagine.

Young: Those, yes, right. Those have now ended up being federal investments into higher education. That platform is there now, right? So we can use it. And you know, coming out of the pandemic it’s still attractive for hybrid learning. So it’s been good. I’m actually very surprised about how well enrollment has held up during the pandemic and even coming out of the pandemic.

What do you attribute that to?

In years past, the prior recession, enrollment just took a dive. And then during the recession, it skyrocketed for UH. And it was based on workforce retraining. So most so that enrollment grew at the community colleges. And so that supported trades, retraining students. So our UH enrollment was counter-cyclical at that time where enrollment was really strong. Tuition revenue was equally strong while the rest of the economy was showing not-so-great numbers. This time around, we would have thought — ahead of the recession but during the pandemic — we were kind of anticipating that maybe we would see a lot of growth in the community colleges. Again, that actually turns out it was not the case. In fact, although Manoa has fared very well with enrollment, even growing enrollment, the same is not true with the community colleges. It is actually the opposite.

System-wide or just a few of the campuses?

Young: A good number of the campuses. But system-wide community colleges, by and large, on average, is down and across our entire university system. Although Manoa has been a bright light, in the aggregate, our actual enrollment is down.

And you expected the opposite this year.

Young: Based on previous previous experiences, we would have thought it would have been different. So it’s kind of, interesting to have guessed wrong, if you will.

Lassner: Nationally. These trends are exactly what we have seen nationally.

Young: But it’s interesting in the way it’s looking at now, one year out of the pandemic, heading into the next full year cycle, I see the market has changed for higher ed, including for UH. Manoa is great. Their in-person enrollment looks really good. Students have returned back in person. The amount of hybrid or online classes is more than pre-pandemic, but there’s still a very large attraction for in-person classes. That’s not really the case at some of our other campuses. So what those campuses would have to do to attract back students, if that is the business model or if it is to try and just grow enrollment and what they have to do to address their customer demographics or what their customers need.

University of Hawaii at Manoa campus.
What attracts students to the University of Hawaii Manoa different than what attracts students to other campuses. (Cory Lum/Civil Beat/2022)

Admittedly it’s different. What attracts students to Manoa is different than what attracts students to UH West Oahu or even to Hilo. So seeing how those campuses will evolve and pivot into the future will be kind of interesting. And UH, I would say financially at least, is in a good place to make that pivot. And if this was 10 years ago, I would probably say, you know, you wouldn’t have been in as good a place financially. So where we’ve come from, we’re in a good place to be more strategic about how we continue to the next phase of evolution.

Just want to touch base on what’s top of mind at the Legislature, given that we’re in session where things are par for the course.

Young: I think if you looked at what the university administration and its Board of Regents requested in additional funding, it’s actually a very prudent and practical request. There are actually three areas that I think are real cornerstones. One is restoration of funding. The Legislature and back in 2021 and 2022 reduced general fund funding. This is called “in the base.” It’s money that was already previously locked in, but they decided to cut it to the tune of about $45-plus million. And last year, 2022, they put some of it back, but not all of it, to the tune of about $24 million.

What attracts students to Manoa is different than what attracts students to UH West Oahu or even to Hilo.

Kalbert Young

So we’re still short. But some of that money is also not recurring. So it’s not back in the base. It’s just one time. Now, keep in mind that’s restoration of funds because prior to 2021 it existed, so it paid for services that the university were already providing. And for the last two years, that funding has gotten stripped away. But the university hasn’t reduced services that it provides to students and the public. The university has had to step in and basically temporarily fund those.

What was the rationale for that? The rationale to reduce it in ’21- ’22? I mean, that’s the height of Covid, of course. But is that the reason?

Young: I think this falls into the area of “par for the course.” I think there were a number of things at play at the Legislature, some of which was there was federal funds available and coming to the university. It was easier for them to see that the university could absorb some of these reductions in state funding. And then back in 2020, even right at the tail end of calendar 2020, there was forecasts that state tax revenues were going to be down. Right? Tourism was closed. (General excise) tax was forecasted to drop. Payroll and income taxes were forecasted to be low because of potential layoffs. So at that time the state did think that the next fiscal year was going to be very slim for tax revenues.

Well, that didn’t happen either. I mean, for all the finance directors around, I guess we’re a pessimistic bunch. And so everybody had forecast that, hey, there’s, some clouds on the horizon, but none of that actually materialized. In fact, the state has come through so great. And now apparently we’ve got to find $2 billion worth of stuff to fund.

So all of that has kind of put us, the university and the state, into a place where now we are asking for restoration of those funds. But it’s not asking for more money. It’s asking for get us back to what we were funded back pre ’20, ’21.

The second one is we are advancing our Hawaii Promise program again. This is about $23 million of an ask.

Just briefly remind us on this program.

Young: Hawaii Promise is a program that is statutorily created by the Legislature to what I call is effectively free college in the community colleges. It’s only in the community college and it’s a last-dollar program where the state, or the through the university, would provide the last dollar after students determine how much is their federally determined financial need. They’ve exhausted all of their other financing needs and if they’re still short. So after Pell Grants, after other financial aid, if they’re still short, the state through Hawaii Promise will fill that gap. So it’s effectively free, but it only exists in the community colleges. And this program has been in existence since 2017.

It’s about five years now. By all metrics, it’s been hugely successful. Thousands of students have received millions of dollars in aid each year. It has helped improve matriculation within the community college, improve their ability to transfer with an associate’s degree. But the program has lacked for what happens when they go on, when they try to go on for a bachelor’s degree. There’s no aid. And Hawaii community college is literally the cheapest in the entire country.

So if you have financial need going to the cheapest college in the United States, if you go to four years, you’re guaranteed you’re going to have financial need and it’s way more expensive. But that aid doesn’t exist. So we’ve been asking for the Legislature that, since this is a state-funded program, and it’s state-created in the statute, that it makes sense for the state to take this program to the next form of evolution, which is the four years. We’ve been unsuccessful to convince the Legislature to do this for at least the last three years. But we’re going again.

Could you address the issue of the research money? And what what is that money going for?

Lassner: So the first thing I want to say is most of that money is going to things that the people of Hawaii need. So cancer research, medical research. And when we do a lot of that research, for example, it is focused on Native Hawaiian, Asian and Pacific Islander populations and their health disparities that no other institution in the country cares about or can do. So sea level rise and what is the impact of sea level rise on islands? A huge source of research funding. And we are the best in the world. And Hawaii needs it more than anybody. Food security and agriculture. This is something we need and we bring in money for these sources. Native Hawaiian education. In some years we’ve brought in $50 million to support Native Hawaiian education. So decoupling this is as if it’s some obscure research pie in the sky that has no relation to our people is simply not an accurate characterization of the work that our faculty are doing.

Source: 2022 Annual Report Extramural Awards & Expenditures

For all the reasons Michael mentioned, that we have this unique environment, we have unique challenges, we have unique opportunities. And when we address those, we are serving the people of Hawaii and we’re doing it with other people’s money. I mean, it’s a real win-win.

The last thing I want to say is even if you believe none of that is relevant and the Legislature, frankly, looks to us constantly for the expertise they need to solve problems. So it’s a little disingenuous, in my opinion, when you look at the number of bills that ask you to study something, because there’s nobody else to study things here. This is our core intellectual capacity, mostly at UH Manoa. But even if you don’t accept that if we were bringing it in just for money’s sake, one of the estimates I saw is we’re creating about another 10,000 jobs through this.

Most research money is going to things that the people of Hawaii need.

David Lassner

It’s a huge economic driver for the state. When we bring money and we create jobs and then it ripples through the economy with all of those people paying taxes, shopping in stores — all of that ripples through in the economic modeling, as you know. That half-billion (dollars) of direct investment turns into multiple billions of economic impact in the state. Even if you didn’t care about what we’re doing. But we do.

Bruno: I think one thing we have gotten continuously better at is connecting that research to the education of the students.

So we have spent a lot of money. We’re now up to something like $1 million a year that we’re directing from different sources to bring undergraduate students into a research project. And by that, I’m not talking about, “Well, they come in and they do a two week lab course and they write a report.” That’s not at all what we’re talking about. We’re talking about taking students and getting them involved in an astronomy project, putting them on ships, getting involved in oceanography research or out into the field, doing work related to agriculture. Sea-level rise. Many, many students involved in those.

And that’s coming from the research money.

Bruno: It’s coming from the research. My office and a few other offices from Hawaii Hall devote resources to support things like the stipend that the student gets for sticking around. Instead of having a summer vacation, they stay on campus and do research so we can help with with the housing. We can help with a stipend, but everything else, which is substantial — the faculty members’ time, the supplies, the travel, go to a conference — all of that is coming from these research projects.

Lassner: So it’s both direct and indirect. And the federal government gets that — this what Michael just described — this is important. So now we’re competing for direct grants to do more of those projects. But we seeded this with our indirect funding to begin to build the program.

Young: There’s not one university in the country, on the planet, where you don’t get to improve quality to a world-class premiere level without some degree of major research and development. And I wouldn’t say UH focuses solely on its research productivity, but I think it’s one area that UH punches above its weight. I think Michael alluded to earlier that much larger universities under produce for research when compared to how much UH does, and considering that UH is the only public higher education institution in the state and how much UH is responsible for, for helping broader statewide agendas. I think it’s an asset for the state that UH should be trying to elevate its quality and its prestige that we bring for the state. And the area of research helps us get there. So it’s not the only way to elevate it, but it certainly needs to be a part of that component.

How much of that is military? Because they give you a lot for research, right?

Lassner: They’re not our top. It’s significant. When you say the military, you mean (Department of Defense)?


Lassner: So they fund things like the Pacific Disaster Center on Maui $5 million to $10 million a year that’s doing geospatial information to protect people and help disaster managers. Most of our energy money comes from the Office of Naval Research. Ten to $20 million a year (for) understanding micro-grids, alternate forms of energy. So a lot of our work in cybersecurity is supported by DOD. So it’s significant. But we’re not doing weapons development. We’re significantly helping with Red Hill. And that is all DOD money.

Young: Earth Sciences is No. 1 actually.

Lassner: The School of the Ocean, Earth, Science and Technology. They are right around $100 million as a single unit. And that includes NOAA. DOD. HNEI is in there. National Science Foundation.

A lot’s happened with Aloha Stadium. It’s confusing, but it sounds like the public-private partnership plan is going forward. We’ll see how that goes. But obviously, this also relates to Ching Athletic Complex. I wondered if you might just talk a little bit about where we are regarding the stadium and the complex.

Lassner: We have no serious visibility into what will happen with the stadium project. We know that they are looking into the finances which, you and everybody have reported on, and I think there’s more scrutiny than there was sometimes. So that is on a path that we have no control over. The president is an ex-officio, non-voting, and during the formative years of the project I was sending a rep, I was sending the athletic director and we were excluded from the executive decision sessions where the decisions were being made. They now have decided to let us in because ex-officio doesn’t mean you don’t get to go to executive sessions.

So we’re focused on what do we need. We did the very fast project, which is the marvel of almost everybody in the state, to accommodate a 9,000-seat stadium. The NCAA number is 15,000. We don’t know if that will change. Our conference, frankly, doesn’t want to see us smaller than that. That’s a problem for media rights and the like. So we the Board of Regents, approved an expansion to 15,000. So that’s work that we expect to have in place by opening day 2023.

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About the Author

Civil Beat Editorial Board

The members of The Civil Beat Editorial Board are Chad Blair, Patti Epler, Nathan Eagle, Kim Gamel, John Hill and Matthew Leonard. Opinions expressed by the editorial board reflect the group’s consensus view. Not all members may participate in every interview or essay. Chad Blair, the Politics and Opinion Editor, can be reached at

Latest Comments (0)

yes please... term limits for dela cruz kidani and kim

citizens_united · 7 months ago

Both my BA and my PhD are from the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa. I love our university, and have been a part of it from age 3 when I began as a pre-school student at what is now known as the University Laboratory School. Besides being a grad, I also taught at the Lab School, and I spent the last 24 years of my working life as a counselor at UH Mānoa. All told, I've been on campus more than 60 years.I am very concerned about the administration's stand on (at least) two issues: 1. Access to the UH libraries for system retirees and alumni, and 2. Plans for the future of the Lab School and the College of Education.With the issue of access for system retirees and alumni to the libraries, I had personal interactions with President Lassner for more than a year. Nothing was resolved. Grads and system retirees not able to travel to a UH library don't have full access to library resources despite spending their academic and/or working lives in the UH system.Their plans for the property upon which the Lab School sits became what is, according to UH's position, a non-issue, over the past month. I'm skeptical. It feels at least to be a back-burner issue, one that could flare up.

Lanning · 7 months ago

After reading this article, it has become clear that the University of Hawaii's leadership team know what its doing, that the Board of Regents have properly tasked them to develop a strong strategic plan, laying out the priority needs of the State and developing programs needed to implement it. The legislature has no clue on how to run the university, so they should lay aside their petty politics and get out of the way. Instead, they should just provide them the necessary resources and trust that the regents, whom they voted for and confirmed, will make sure that proper oversight is exercised.

Zack · 7 months ago

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