Be a Hero. Be a Teacher. Contest Winner is Announced

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April 25, 2019
Charlene Abe

On March 29, 2019, Hawaii News Now announced Charlene Abe, Student Services Coordinator at Pearl City High School, as the winner of the Be a Hero. Be a Teacher. contest. The contest is one of several spinoffs of the original UH System campaign, which includes a 30-second Public Service Announcement, a two and half minute slam poetry video, and a website.

The contest recognizes a stand-out teacher who has been a hero in the eyes of students, working every day to make a difference in their lives. Abe was nominated by Hawai‘i Department of Education Administrator Danielle Himalaya, a former student of Abe’s who became a teacher herself.

“It is such an honor to have an award not from your constituents, but a former student,” Abe said. “Danielle came to me with a myriad of challenges; however, she learned to believe in herself and understand her self-worth. Her grit, tenacity, and genuine desire to succeed kept her reaching for something greater and got her to where she is today – soaring! I am so very proud of her and so very grateful that she allowed me to be a part of her life.”

Himalya wrote, “She became the mentor and teacher I needed to put me back on track. Her tell it like it is attitude mixed with tough love helped me to realize that I have control over me and my situation, and I don’t have control over the others and their actions.”

Conceptualized by the College of Education’s beloved late Niki Libarios, Be a Hero. Be a Teacher. highlights the benefits and rewards of becoming a teacher in order to inspire students and working professionals to consider a career in education.

“There were many nominees for the contest, but Ms. Abe’s story exemplified what the campaign is all about,” said Dean Nathan M. Murata.

To learn more about UH Manoa College of Education scholarships, degree programs, professional development, and online options, speak to an advisor today!

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