Monday, October 16, 2017

'Inclusion Drives Innovation:' National Disability Awareness Month

Submitted by Susan Gray, Manager, Employee Relations and EEO/AA Compliance



Have you used email today? If so, thank Vint Cerf. While with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency in the 1970s, Cerf co-designed the basic protocols for internet communications. One motivation behind his work was frustration communicating with other researchers by voice; Cerf is hard of hearing. Later, in the private sector, he was part of the team that developed the first commercial email system. 

This October, HPU is proud to support National Disability Employment Awareness Month.  #InclusionDrivesInnovation, this year’s theme, focuses on welcoming the talents of all people, including those with disabilities, as a critical part to building an inclusive community and strong economy.  

Here at HPU we are committed to fostering a diverse, equitable environment in which faculty, staff, and students excel. We invite those with disabilities to self-identify by updating your disability status here and let us know if you require any reasonable accommodations.

More information can be found on the US Department of Labor
website and on the HR tab of Pipeline.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Q&A with the New Dean of the College of Extended and Interdisciplinary Education

— As Told to Tameron Hodges

Human Resources turned the spotlight on Mani Sehgal, the new Dean of the College of Extended and Interdisciplinary Education. Sehgal has been a vital member of the HPU ‘ohana for over 16 years.  Originally from Edmonton, Canada, Sehgal completed his undergraduate studies in math and business, receiving a B.Sc. from Concordia University.  Moving to the U.S., he received his M.B.A. in Finance and an M.Ed. in Math Education, from the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.  He is currently Ph.D. ABD in Math Education, at the University of Victoria, in B.C. Canada.

Dean Sehgal joined HPU as a Visiting Instructor of Mathematics in 2001, became a regular faculty member in 2003, and moved over to the School of Education in 2011.  He has served as the 3-2 Engineering Coordinator and Secondary Education Program Director, and for the last four years, Sehgal has been the Director for the School of Education.


To find out something we didn’t know about Dean Sehgal, we recently posed the following questions:

Q: What led you to higher education as a profession?
A: Serendipity. (Truth be told, it was by chance that I stumbled upon higher education.) My background is in Math and Finance. I strongly believe in financial literacy for high schoolers and young adults. Incidentally, I was given the opportunity to develop a course, “The Common Sense of Finance,” and taught it for several years at the high school level. One opportunity led to another and I was offered an adjunct position, teaching Math at HPU.

Q: What has been the biggest challenge in your life?
A: I am naturally a very private person, so to be quite honest with you, talking about myself.

Q: What are you most proud of?
A: In every situation I encounter, I try to approach it with integrity and compassion. I give credit to my parents for instilling this in me.

A: Why have you chosen to be part of HPU for nearly 17 years?
A: I love teaching. While teaching Math, I (quickly) realized the impact I could make helping students understand a subject that many find very challenging (because I was able to break it down and help students with content they weren’t able to understand before). It was inspiring to see students able to make sense of difficult formulas and algorithms.  Then, I was provided with the opportunity to teach Education majors. I have to say that it was more rewarding than I could have ever imagined (getting a chance to teach future teachers). It gives me a chance to indirectly create effective teachers, which in turn helps students of the future who will then contribute to building a better society.  I love what I’m doing.

Q: What led you to seek the administrative position of dean?
A: I wanted to make a difference. I felt like it would give me the opportunity to make positive changes for the students, staff, faculty, college and the University as a whole.  I initially was not even thinking about the position, but the support of faculty and staff throughout the College (and University) made me reconsider.

Q: How will you measure success as a new dean?
A: Unite the college, create opportunity for the (military) bases, serve adult learners who want to transfer their quality education and experience, get rid of division, and strive for all around better communication.  I’ll let my colleagues and peers “measure” how successful I am…

Q: If you were not an educator, what would you be?
A: An Entrepreneur.  I owned two restaurants before I moved to Hawai‘i, and it’s true what they say…once you’re an entrepreneur, you’re always an entrepreneur.

Q: What brought you to Hawai‘i?
A: After I sold the restaurants in Canada, I bought a ticket for a trip around the world with Hawai‘i as the first stop.  After arriving, I decided to extend my stay and ended up cancelling the remainder of the trip to remain in Hawai‘i.  A trip around the world is now at the top of my “bucket list.”

Q: What books are waiting on your bookshelf to be read?
A: Pragmatic Capitalism, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry, and a stack of EAB books the Provost dropped off at my office last month...(wink wink).

Q: What is your ideal vacation?
A: Plenty of sleep.

Q: What is one thing that people would be most surprised to know about you?
A: I am allergic to cheese, but I love deep dish pizza. I just make sure I take tons of Benadryl before and after.

HPU Partners with American Red Cross of Hawai‘i

Carrie Moore (Student Life) and Madeline Serrano (Business Office)
work with a family at a smoke alarm installation 
Approximately a dozen HPU employees and students stepped forward to volunteer on Sept. 23 and Oct. 7 for the American Red Cross of Hawai‘i “Sound the Alarm: Save a Life Campaign” service work days. Working in teams, the HPU ‘ohana joined 300 corporate and individual volunteers to install 626 smoke alarms in 270 households on Oahu. The teams also provided fire safety education to the residents.

Hawai‘i Pacific University seeks service partners whose work could most benefit from our ‘ohana’s desire to volunteer and give back to the people and communities throughout our islands. In September, the University announced it had committed to a partnership with the American Red Cross of Hawai‘i as HPU’s service organization of choice for the 2017-18 Academic Year.


Angie Botelho (Facilities) and Uzoamaka “Maka” Ogbodo 
(College of Natural and Computational Sciences)
According to the American Red Cross, they respond to a disaster every eight minutes, and the vast majority of these are home fires. Every day, seven people die from home fires, and most of these deaths are attributed to homes that lack working smoke alarms and a disproportionate number of children and elderly are killed..      

Student Michael Chase installing a smoke alarm

Madeline Serrano (Business Office), Lianne Yamamura (Strategic Communications), 
Marites McKee (Student Life), Sara Sato (Enrollment Management), 
student Kim Dwyer, and Carrie Moore (Student Life)


American Advertising Federation Scholarship Awarded to HPU Student

Senior Mass Communications major Katrina Hicks is the 2nd place recipient of the Fall 2017 American Advertising Federation (AAF) Hawaii Shining Star Scholarship. She was recognized on Friday, Sept. 29 at the AAF’s Brand Bash, a fundraising initiative for the Shining Star Scholarship program and other educational opportunities for professionals and students alike.

Hicks is an officer of the Akamai Advertising club, and she has been actively involved in the Student Government Association, Campus Activities Board, Student Alumni Council, and International Vocal Ensemble.

I would like to sincerely thank AAF Hawaii for continuously providing me with wonderful opportunities to continue my education and pursue my dreams of entering the advertising industry,” shares Hicks. “I am truly honored to have been selected as one of the Shining Star recipients for 2017!"


The AAF Hawaii Shining Star Scholarship is open to current full-time students of a Hawaii college or university and majoring in Advertising or an Advertising-related field such as Graphic or Web design, Marketing, Journalism or Communications. Scholarship recipients are selected on the basis of academic achievement, need, demonstrated leadership, participation in school and community service activities, honors and other awards or recognition, work experience and statement of goals and aspirations, and unusual personal and/or family circumstances.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Social Work ‘Ohana Participates in Overdose Awareness Event


From left to right: David Shaku, MSW student; 
Heather Lusk, Executive Director of CHOW, MSW alumna;
Raquel Curtis, MSW student;
Leilani Maxera, Program Manager at CHOW, MSW student;
Nicole Beineman, Outreach Worker, BSW alumna;
Sean Quigley, Hepatitis C Care Coordinator at CHOW, MSW student
HPU Social Work faculty, students, and alumni participated with the Community Health Outreach Work to Prevent AIDS (CHOW) Project for their Overdose Awareness Day Teach-In and Memorial, which was held on August 31 at Harris United Methodist Church.

In honor of international Overdose Awareness Day, over 70 people came together at the CHOW-hosted event to learn how to prevent an opioid overdose and how to reverse an overdose with Naloxone. Thirty-five individuals were trained by CHOW staff on how to use Naloxone and were given overdose prevention kits to take home with them.

Attendees also heard personal stories from those affected by opioid addiction and overdose and were given a space to honor lives lost to it. September 12 marked the one-year anniversary of CHOW providing Naloxone to the community. In that time, 46 overdose reversals have been reported — that's 46 lives saved by their Naloxone program.

Assistant Professor of Social Work Michaela Rinkel, Ph.D., serves on the board of CHOW, and CHOW's Executive Director is Heather Lusk, an MSW graduate. CHOW also employs two MSW students, a BSW graduate, and three MSW students are interning with the organization.