Lois A. Yamauchi, a professor and graduate chair in the College of Education (COE) Department of Educational Psychology (EDEP), has been selected for the Peter V. Garrod Distinguished Graduate Mentoring Award. Annually, the UH Mānoa Graduate Council recognizes one outstanding faculty member with the graduate mentoring excellence award and an accompanying $1,000 prize. Yamauchi has served EDEP since 1993 as an assistant, associate, and full professor as well as department chair.
“I am honored by the award,” Yamauchi said. “I was surprised and deeply moved to learn that so many of my former and current students were involved in my nomination. Mentoring is by far the most fulfilling part of my job. Many of my former students have become some of my closest friends and professional colleagues.”
Yamauchi, who has mentored nearly 50 graduate students and served on 41 doctoral and master’s committees over the last 27 years, is currently mentoring four doctoral and two master’s students. Megumi Makino-Kanehiro, Director of the Mānoa Advising Center and former doctoral student of Yamauchi’s, was one of the primary nominators along with EDEP Professor Kathy Ratliffe.
When Makino-Kanehiro reached out to other former and current students to submit their nominations, she received an outpouring of support with 17 students and colleagues providing their testimonials and contributing to Yamauchi’s selection.
“For more than thirteen years, she completely took me under her wing,” Makino-Kanehiro wrote. “I not only ended up doing a dissertation based on her research, but I was also introduced and welcomed into a community of scholars. Working on longitudinal qualitative research based on Dr. Yamauchi’s original research, I have been accepted to present with her and another graduate student, Kawehionālani Goto, at the American Educational Research Association (AERA) Virtual Annual Meeting.”
As Director of the Center for Research on Education, Diversity and Excellence (CREDE), Yamauchi provides professional development for PK–12 teachers to improve their practice for culturally and linguistically diverse learners. With a research focus on the sociocultural influences on learning and experiences in school among Indigenous and other minoritized populations, Yamauchi has co-authored 26 papers and 33 national and international presentations with students or former students.
Goto, a current EDEP doctoral student who works in the Native Hawaiian Place of Learning Advancement Office, wrote, “Lois creates space for me at our institution, helps me use my academic voice, and continues to remind me that I am a meaningful part of this campus community. In the future, I hope that I can become a similar model of grace, caring, and leadership. I am indebted to her for helping me to become the researcher that I am today.”
Reflecting on how her students have enriched her life, Yamauchi recalls how fortunate she was to receive such strong mentoring herself from Roland G. Tharp.
“Roland G. Tharp, my mentor, was an excellent listener who prioritized what I wanted over his own research goals,” she said. “He discussed his mentoring decisions with me, and I emulate these processes, ‘thinking aloud’ to my students about what I do as a mentor to make my actions more transparent, and explaining that they can do the same for their future students. I honor my mentor by providing strong mentorship to my own students who, in turn, may mentor their students well and so forth.”
Read The humanistic mentoring of Roland G. Tharp by Lois A. Yamauchi