$1.5 million gift to UH Hilo to fund scholarships and student success

University of Hawaiʻi
Alyson Kakugawa-Leong, (808) 974-7642
Director Media Relations
Martha Hanson, (808) 956-3716
University of Hawaiʻi Foundation
Posted: May 15, 2009

"As an institution committed to access and opportunity, UH Hilo is proud to be recognized with this wonderful vote of confidence in our ability to transform the lives of our students. UH Hilo serves as an economic engine for our state and region, and we will repay this investment many times over as our students graduate and take their place in the professional workforce."

- Rose Tseng, Chancellor UH Hilo

HILO - Current and future students at the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo stand to benefit from a recent $1.5 million gift from an anonymous donor, pending acceptance of the gift by the University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents at its meeting May 29. At the donor‘s request, $1 million has been designated for financial assistance and scholarships to all eligible students. An additional $500,000 has been designated for unrestricted purposes, enabling the university to advance its goals.

UH Hilo will use this groundbreaking gift to recruit and retain the students from Hawaiʻi and elsewhere, to remove barriers to student access and achievement, and to enhance programs and services that support student success.

Additionally, UH Hilo plans to leverage the impact of this donation through a matching gift program. Details of a matching gift opportunity will be announced shortly. "It is our belief that this incredibly generous gift will inspire others in our community to join the Centennial Campaign effort and support UH Hilo priorities," commented Chancellor Rose Tseng. "This gift could not have come at a more opportune time as our students and their families face profound economic challenges and myriad barriers to higher education." UH Hilo currently has the highest percentage of students receiving financial aid of any of the ten University of Hawaiʻi campuses.

"Alumni, faculty, corporations and foundations have long understood that the ability of public universities to achieve their mission is strengthened when state support is augmented by private funds," said Donna Vuchinich, president, University of Hawaiʻi Foundation. "Through leveraging this generous gift, students today and in the future, can receive student aid and get the education they need to fulfill their personal potential."

To date UH Hilo has raised over $14 million toward a $15 million goal for the Centennial Campaign, a highly inclusive development effort underway in conjunction with the 100th anniversary of public higher education in Hawaiʻi.

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The University of Hawaiʻi Hilo is a comprehensive university with 36 bachelor‘s degree program, six master‘s programs and two doctoral programs. UH Hilo strives to integrate culture and science, offer hands-on learning opportunities to its students and use the Island of Hawaiʻi as a natural learning laboratory. Enrollment has doubled since 1980 to nearly 3,800 students coming from all 50 states and 40 countries. Please visit www.uhh.hawaii.edu.

The University of Hawaiʻi Foundation, a nonprofit organization, raises private funds to support the University of Hawaiʻi System. Our mission is to unite our donors‘ passions with the University of Hawaiʻi's aspirations to benefit the people of Hawaiʻi and beyond. We do this by raising private philanthropic support, managing private investments and nurturing donor and alumni relationships. Please visit www.uhf.hawaii.edu.