The Hawai’i Office is working to establish themselves as a resource to family, students and alumni from Hawai’i, but also make a presence in Forest Grove.

The palm leaves and plastic leis given out at the homecoming football game were courtesy of the Hawai’i Office.

“Anyway we can help support our university, we are going to,” said the office’s Administrative Assistant Cherylin Lee. “Those are our local pom poms.”

The office’s goal is to provide assistance with moral support and other forms of support.

When football has video streaming of their games, the office opens their doors to families to watch and host a potluck. Fifteen to twenty family members of Boxers on the football team regularly attend the potlucks.

During Homecoming, Hawai’i Office Director Gary Pacarro met with Career Development Center Director Brian O’Driscoll. The two are working to establish internships with more than thirty businesses.

“We want to help students when and if they move back home,” said Lee. “We have thousands of alumni on the islands, its our Boxer ‘Ohana.”

Since their child’s freshmen year, parents of students from Hawai’i are involved in Pacific’s Annual Lu’au. Lee described the office as a way for parents of alumni to stay involved and engaged with Pacific. They send out a monthly Boxer ‘Ohana newsletter to keep those in Hawaii updated on different events and projects.

The office also plays the role of a home connection for students from Hawai’i. When culture shock sets in from leaving the islands, Lee said they play a vital role in the adjustment for freshmen and transfers to Pacific.

Currently, it’s just Lee and Pacarro manning the office, but it has a conference room that can hold up to 20 people and can be used as a classroom.

Lee said they have made it clear to faculty that their office can be used for winter classes. Sociology professor Daniel Eisen has used the space to hold a class. Lee added that they also try to reach out to staff and faculty when they go to Hawai’i for conferences and such. Faculty are even entertaining the idea of holding summer school in the office, said Lee.

The office hosts volunteer opportunities as well. Lee said in November they are feeding the homeless in Honolulu, where the office is located.

“The more we show our support in the community, the more we get Pacific’s name out there,” said Lee.

The Hawai’i Office holds an annual reception every July and last year about 100 people attended.

“The more involved we are the more we can market the university,” said Lee. “The office is a form of support. We are a family within a family.”

For more information, the Hawai’i office can be contacted at Hawaii@pacificu.edu.

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