CU Hawaii awards $5,000 in scholarships to graduating high school seniors

HILO, HI (July 14, 2021) — CU Hawaii FCU is proud to announce the recipients of the 2021 scholarship program. A total of $5,000 was awarded to five Hawai’i island graduating seniors.

“We recognize value of education and understand that tuition costs are on the rise. To be able to assist these young adults in their bright paths of success is something we are proud of.” James Takamine, President/CEO stated.

The recipients are Pascal Yann Kawehi Cazbuel, Megan Nakamoto, Ethan Okahara-Olsen, Sophia Perry and Kacie Tagawa. Recipients of the $1,000 scholarships were selected based on their submitted essays. This year’s essay question was:

Let’s go back to 2016, 5 years ago. Looking back as an 8th grader, how did you see your future self in your last semester of senior year and what lessons did you learn along the way that you can apply to move forward to get to 2026, 5 years where you want to be?

Below are excerpts from each winning essay:

Cabuzel: “I must continue to step outside of my comfort zone, try new things and be spontaneous. A new journey awaits, one that is just as fun and exciting.” Kawehi of Hawaii Preparatory Academy will be attending University of Southern California with focus on studies in Architecture.

Nakamoto: “Don’t settle. Be patient. Speak now. Think freely. Love yourself. Moving forward, I’ll apply these five takeaways to my coming endeavors.” Megan of Waiakea High School will attend University of California, Los Angeles with focus on studies in Life Sciences.

Okahara-Olsen: “If I ever wanted to become involved with medicine and be able to have a significant impact in the health and lives of many people, I would need to have a strong basis in the sciences and humanities.” Ethan of Waiakea High School will attend University of Washington with focus on studies in Biochemistry.

Perry: “I learned to find personal value in every project and focus on things that I am truly curious about and most excited to do.” Sophia of Kamehameha Schools will attend Northwestern University with focus on studies in Journalism.

Tagawa: “This year alone, I have learned how resilience and determination is very important in everyday life.” Kacie of Waiakea High School will attend University of Oregon with focus in studies in Sports Marketing

James Takamine, President/CEO, with Pascal Kawehi Cabuzel, one of CU Hawaii’s scholarship recipients.

About CU Hawaii FCU

For over 65 years, CU Hawaii is a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. That means the profits are given back to the membership through competitive rates, lower fees and free services. Today, CU Hawaii has over $350 million in assets with over 28,000 in membership and 8 branches serving the Hawai’i island.


Charles Fontanilla
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