Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Celebrating connections, opening the conversation

When I was first asked to contribute to a blog celebrating 60 years of Pacific Island Studies at UH Manoa I was a little intimadated. I've blogged for years, but I've only been a member of the Center for Pacific Island Studies for 3 months! What could I possibly have to add to this conversation as such a newcomer?
Then I remembered that this week our campus here at Manoa is starting Open Access Week, a celebration of the goal of 'open access' -- that our scholarly and creative work should be open to as broad an audience as possible. So we are celebrating both Pacific Connections and Open Access. What two ideas could go together better? Without access and sharing of ideas, we cannot have connection. If we do not connect with one another, then we cannot share.
I think not enough people know about the great job the Center for Pacific Island Studies has done sharing their work. Did you know, for example, that CPIS has shared over 1500 articles and books available for free on the University of Hawai'i's website? And if you poke around a little further you can find Bob Kiste's history of the first three decades of CPIS which was originally published in Pacific Studies and is now hosted by PIDP over in the East-West Center. You can even take a sneak peak at John Goss and Terence Wesley-Smith's introduction the book Remaking Area Studies from the University of Hawai'i Press website. And I think some CPIS people once put up a website about Rotuma....
So my question as a newcomer to the center is: what are your favorite or most influential pieces in Pacific Studies over the past 60 years? And with such an embarrassment of riches before us, could we put together an open access 'edited volume' of 'greatest hits in Pacific Studies' which would be free and available and open to all? Who knows, such a volume could become in-flight reading as conference participants cross our sea of islands to head for Moore Hall....

Monday, October 25, 2010

Michael Wesch video: Today's Students

I have recently discovered the fascinating work of Michael Wesch, an anthropologist at Kansas State University, who examines social networking and media. I am particularly interested in how contemporary undergraduate students, in particular, learn and how we can adapt our classroom teaching to best reach them. I am hoping those of you involved or interested in the panel on classroom connections will take a look at this five minute YouTube clip graphically describing today's students. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dGCJ46vyR9o&feature=player_embedded Do you use You Tube in your classroom? DO your students contribute to a class blog? Do you assign Tweets? How do your students respond to your efforts? --Julie Walsh Kroeker

Monday, October 4, 2010

Celebrating Connections: 60 Years of Pacific Studies

The following questions will guide our discussion at the conference. Participants are invited to get a head start on the discussion by posting their thoughts on these and other topics they feel are relevant. Happy blogging!



• What key goals guide program development in Pacific studies at your institution?
• What does (or could) your program gain by collaborating with other Pacific studies programs?
• How could resources be shared or communicated more productively among Pacific studies scholars and students across programs?
• On your campus, how accessible are Pacific-related activities and resources to Pacific Islander communities locally and elsewhere?
• What are the most critical concerns in your program, and how are they being addressed?


• What can instructors and students learn from interacting with Pacific Islander communities?
• How can Pacific Islander communities benefit from interacting with students?
• What strategies have you found to be most effective in the recruitment and retention of Pacific Islander students?


• How can we best assess student learning, including participatory learning in the community?
• What teaching methods are especially effective with your undergraduate students?
• How can we use technology, social networking, and other new media to best advantage in our classrooms?


• What are the employment and career opportunities for Pacific studies graduates?
• How can Pacific studies programs best prepare students to meet their employment goals?
• How can Pacific studies programs track the career paths of their graduates and incorporate their feedback into program development?