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UH Graduate Students in Chinese Studies and Architecture Honored

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Kristen Cabral, (808) 956-5039
Public Information Officer
Susan Grass, (808) 956-2501
Community Relations Manager
Posted: Apr 1, 2003

The University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa is proud to announce three awards that were given to graduate students of the university. The awards include the 2003 Chung-fong & Grace Ning Excellence in Chinese Studies Graduate Student Award, the 2003 John DeFrancis Prize and the American Institute of Architecture Students Award.

The 2003 Chung-fong & Grace Ning Excellence in Chinese Studies Award, which is presented to a graduate student and includes a cash prize of $500, was presented this year to Matthew Moneyhon, a dual major in Asian Studies and Law. Moneyhon was nominated by Professor Dru Gladney of the Asian Studies department, who said, "Matt‘s joint degree allows him to focus on the nexus of law, policy, and economics in the Xinjiang Uighur Autonomous region, and to arrive at a deeper understanding of the political-legal relationship between the Chinese central government and the Uighur people of Xinjiang." Gladney notes that Moneyhon‘s joint degree gained greater significance after 9-11, when the Chinese government incorporated its efforts to eradicate Uighur separatism into the international campaign against terror. "He is a student who breaks the mold, takes risks, and excels in non-traditional areas," Gladney said.

The 2003 John DeFrancis Prize is awarded for the best paper and presentation at the School of Hawaiian, Asian, and Pacific Studies‘ annual Graduate Student Conference, held this year in conjunction with the East-West Center. The prize was awarded to Ka Wong in the Department of Art. Wong‘s paper, entitled "From Paris to Tokyo: Chinese Artists‘ Quest for Modernity through Western-style Painting in the Early 20th-Century," examines the tensions between modernity and Chinese-ness in the context of 20th-century Chinese art.

Through an analysis of what he calls the modernists and the realists, Wong shows how major Chinese artists in the 20th-century approached traditional and Western artistic styles, and experimented with new understandings of subjectivity and individuality in their works. The review committee for the prize commented, "The paper is carefully researched, well written, makes some very interesting and important arguments and is likely publishable in its current shape."

The American Institute of Architecture Students Award was presented for the third time in the past 10 years to a UH architecture student. The research award is given annually by the American Institute of Architecture Students (AIAS), a national organization. Dean Johnston, a graduate student in the UH Mānoa School of Architecture, won the 2002 AIAS Research Award for his research project on the use of bamboo in architecture.

Members of the UH AIAS Chapter have won a dozen national awards in recent years that include several Leadership Awards and Best Chapter Awards. UH‘s record is the best among all the architecture schools in the United States. For its students‘ award-winning tradition, the UH AIAS chapter is nicknamed around the country as the "Hawaiʻi Dynasty."