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In its ongoing commitment to cultivate ‘ōiwi leaders, Kamehameha Schools partnered with Arizona State University to create an online program for a Master of Arts degree in Indigenous Education. The application deadline for the program is August 1, 2021. Attend a virtual information session on May 28 to learn more.

Online MA program with Native Hawaiian track now accepting applications

May 10, 2021

Contributed by Nadine Lagaso

Kamehameha Schools has collaborated with Arizona State University to offer a new online opportunity available to learners looking to uplift the lāhui by pursuing a graduate degree with a Native Hawaiian track. The program will launch the first Hawaiʻi cohort this August for its online Master of Arts degree in Indigenous Education.

Out of the program’s ten required courses, Hawaiʻi-based kumu will teach four:

  • History of Indigenous Education
  • Language and Literacy of Indigenous Peoples
  • Indigenous Knowledges in Education, and
  • Current Issues in Indigenous Education.

KS Kealaiwikuamoʻo Senior Project Manager Manuwai Peters, will teach History of Indigenous Education. He said the curriculum will focus on Hawaiʻi while also pulling in relevant examples from the Pacific islands.

“As I create the course, I will tap into my personal experiences as a Hawaiian language immersion teacher as well as both seminal writings on decolonization and contemporary articles from kānaka researchers and artists,” Peters said. “As we move into more remote and blended online learning, I view my teaching of this course as one way I can evolve and stay current with the new challenges and realities that our kumu and students are facing across the pae ʻāina.”

Kāʻeo Duarte, KS vice president of Community & ʻĀina Resiliency, praised ASU’s innovative online training platforms and dedication to incorporating a Native Hawaiian cultural lens into its Indigenous education curriculum.

“This new initiative will help prepare the next generation of education leaders from all walks of life to make the necessary shifts in the way keiki are taught and what our haumāna learn, and that’s transformational to other aspects of society,” he explained. “By working together, we’re able to promote ʻōiwi leadership and also share our rich history and culture, reaching students far beyond Hawaiʻi.”

This latest initiative stems from a partnership that began in 2016. Both ASU and KS share a mission to enrich the communities around them through advancement of education and sustainability.

The partnership led to several initiatives, including a series of virtual huakaʻi exploring Kahaluʻu Ma Kai and Makalawena in West Hawaiʻi. It also resulted in the establishment of the Global Consortium for Sustainability Outcomes in which members join forces to implement and scale solutions that address sustainability challenges. The collaboration also produced career exploration internships for students, the Mauō Scholarship, and additional support services for Hawaiian haumāna attending ASU.

KS and ASU built upon their strong relationship by renewing their partnership in 2020 with a virtual signing ceremony of a three-year agreement. Also last year through the partnership, Kamehameha Schools unveiled KS Digital, providing a gateway to an array of educational technology tools, accredited K-12 education and Hawaiian culture-based content.

For more information about the program and to apply, visit the program’s information page on the ASU website. The application deadline is August 1, 2021. 


A virtual information session for students interested in ASU’s Master of Arts in Indigenous Education will be held on Friday, May 28, 2021. Register here and a Zoom invitation will be sent to you prior to the session.

educational partnerships, 'ōiwi leaders,indigenous education,higher education

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