Institute for Teacher EducationDegree:
PBCTE in Secondary Student
Where do you work?
I work at ʻAiea High School where I teach Hawaiian language, history, culture and Hula.
How did you become interested in the field of secondary education?
Becoming a secondary education teacher is the reason I was conceived in the womb, meaning, I was genetically bred to be a Hawaiian Language and Hula practitioner-educator. The interest in becoming an educator grew as I was formed to fulfill my purpose as an educator.
Briefly describe your road to college.
My road to college was long, about 20 years in the making. As I was taking college courses, I was also fortunate to gain other valuable life experiences, such as serving in the military, as a school security attendant, a sub-custodian, a part-time teacher, a sub-teacher, and other areas of employment.
Why did you select the UHM COE?
I did not select the UHM COE; rather, the program selected me because it came at an unexpected time, at a time when I was not searching for it.
What does the "Grow Our Own" initiative and stipend mean to you?
The Grow Our Own initiative means that I have the privilege and honor to serve and educate young adults through the medium of ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi and Hula, a privilege and honor I take very seriously.
Is there anyone in particular who inspired you to pursue teaching as a career?
My grandmother, Betty K. Kalani; my parents, Jody, Wayne, and Daina (step-mother); my daughter, Leihonua Kalani-Morita, and my lifelong KUMU and mentor, Cheryl Kelila Morita.
What are your plans after graduation?
My plans after graduation are to continue teaching high school for 7–10 years, seek an EdD degree, and become an administrator.