PaCES: Opening eyes and opportunities

PaCES: Opening eyes and opportunities

The Minami Community Foundation is continuing its legacy of generosity with an annual gift to the Windward Community College Pacific Center for Environmental Studies (PaCES). 

PaCES is a summer outreach opportunity for high school students interested in environmental science, research and stewardship of the ‘āina. Since 2007, Minami has supported PaCES which promotes understanding and stewardship of the environment, complex ecosystems and natural resources from a scientific, historical, cultural and social perspective.

"This past summer we ran our 12th session of our PaCES summer environmental science program for high school students,” said Dave Krupp, biological and marine sciences professor and chair of the Department of Natural Sciences. “The Minami Community Foundation has supported 10 of those sessions, providing our students with scholarships and material resources that have helped many students participate that would otherwise not have been able to join us because of financial limitations.”

The intensive six-week program provides a college-like experience for high school students while also exposing them to laboratory and field activities.

Added Krupp, “Our culture-based, place-based environmental science program, done in partnership with the Hawaiʻi Institute of Marine Biology, has engaged students into high-level scientific study through the lens of traditional knowledge, practice and sustainability.”

Taking Education to the Next Level

Brittany, a former PaCES student who has taken her education to the next level.Brittany S., a former PaCES student, has taken her education to the next level and is now working as a research assistant in BYU’s hydrogeochemistry lab.

“I get to work on soil analyses to determine what types of minerals are in certain soils using x-ray diffraction,” said Brittany. “It’s almost unheard of for a freshman to work in the labs here as a research assistant, but I was able to snag this marvelous job before the semester even started and that was mainly due to the experience I had gained from the PaCES program.”

In addition to their gift to PaCES, since 2000 Minami has also funded the Minami Community Foundation Scholarship, which has helped support more than 70 Windward CC students over the past 16 years.

“We believe that education is a key factor in creating a brighter future,” said Minami Community Foundation Trustee John Reppun. “Whether environmental science, marine biology or any other field, we are proud to support PaCES and Windward Community College students.”

For Our University, Our Hawai‘i, Our Future