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About 900 supporters, alumni, students and faculty of the College of Engineering turned out in force for the annual Holmescoming event at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. Gov. David Ige may be the college’s best known graduate.
“The College of Engineering will be the driver of innovation,” said Gov. Ige. “The University of Hawaiʻi is the driver of the next generation of jobs.”
Engineering Alumni Association past president Keith Uemura said, “Within our industry you know the College of Engineering puts out a good portion of our employees, so we need to support the college so we can perpetuate this and support the growth of our industry.”
Students say they appreciate the opportunities the College of Engineering provides for hands on learning and undergraduate research. Sasha Yamada, a sophomore who is studying electrical engineering, noted she was able work on a research project as a freshman.
“I think it’s really important for the public to understand that we have research opportunities here for engineers, especially at an undergraduate level, which is really uncommon for universities,” Yamada said.
Brianne Yamada, a senior majoring in mechanical engineering, says student diversity makes the College of Engineering an exciting place to be. She currently works for an environmental engineering company. “I feel with the Hawaiʻi Clean Energy Initiative there’s a lot of opportunities and it’s such an exciting time to be an engineer,” she said. “I plan to continue a career in the energy industry and see what I can do for Hawaiʻi.”
And the hope is these students and others will some day be back for Holmescoming as supportive alumni.