Hui O Hawaiʻi provides students a home away from home

Shy Yamasaki, Staff Writer

Saint Martin’s University hosts many clubs here on campus and Hui O Hawai’i is one of them. If students want to learn more about Hawai’i, Hui O Hawaiʻi is the club to join. Many of the members in Hui O Hawaiʻi are from the state of Hawai’i or other islands in Oceania. Anyone from the school is welcome to learn more about the culture and traditions of Hawaiʻi by joining the club. 

Hui O Hawaiʻi club is a good way to help deal with homesickness if you are from Hawaiʻi. The leadership for the club is preparing for Ho‘olaule‘a, which is in November, and for Lu’au which is in spring semester. Hoʻolauleʻa is a traditional Hawaiian festival or celebration and a luʻau is another traditional Hawaiian party that consists of food and entertainment. What the club is doing for Hoʻolauleʻa is providing hula, food, and many more activities. In addition, the Lu’au helps with getting everyone involved with the culture and traditions that Hawaiʻi has, since it is the biggest event that the club hosts annually. 

By breaking stereotypes of Hawaiʻi from outside perspectives, Hui O Hawai’i helps educate the campus community about Hawaiian culture and traditions. Another small project that the club is doing is decorating the bulletin board on the third floor of Old Main.

The Committee Chair of Decorations, Jenna Ramirez of the class of 2022, shared her experience about being in the club. She stated, “I love Hui ʻO Hawaiʻi. Hui ʻO Hawaiʻi club is my home away from home, meaning they are the reason I barely get home sick. I am constantly surrounded by people who understand the ‘aloha culture’ that we have back home and who are able to bring that warmth to Washington. My favorite event that we host is Lu’au. My favorite part would be performing and showcasing my talent. I have danced hula for my halua, Na Maka O Pu’uwai Aloha, for 13 years and Lu’au gives me the chance to show my passion for this dance. I look forward to this year’s Luau, especially being in charge of decorations.” 

This month, the club hosted three events. The first event was an Among Us game night held on Oct. 7th. Another event was a virtual scavenger hunt hosted on Instagram. It consisted of clues about a location on campus or in Hawaiʻi and Washington with 10 lucky winners. Finally, on Oct. 10th, they hosted an online NAMIWalk through Zoom, which spreads awareness about mental illnesses. They fundraised and got to about 40 percent of their $400 goal, but their overall goal is to raise about $1,000. Hui O Hawaiʻi meets every Friday from 7 p.m. -8 p.m. either on Zoom or in the TUB. Contact Hui O Hawaiʻi club President Jocelyn Bonilla (jocelyn.bonilla@stmartin,edu) or follow Hui O Hawaiʻi Instagram page (@smuhui0hawaii) for information about joining the club and upcoming events.

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