On Sept. 12, over 50 Kamehameha Schools alumni from a variety of professions returned to the Kapālama campus to share their ‘ike, or knowledge, with more than 1,300 students in grades 9-11.
Now in its seventh year, Launa ‘Ike, an alumni-student mentorship program, offers alumni the opportunity to give back in time and talent.
“As alumni, we've been blessed with a Kamehameha education that has set the pathway to success in college, our careers and life,” said Pono Ma‘a KSK’82, director of alumni relations with the Office of Advancement. “To ensure the future success of our haumāna, Launa ‘Ike is just one way that alumni can pay it forward to the next generation.”
This year’s cohort of alumni covered a diverse spectrum of professionals, including a commercial pilot, counter terrorism analyst, film and movie executive, and bomb technician.
“It feels good to share my experiences and help these students make useful decisions when it comes to college and a career,” said Dr. David Mattson, a 1989 graduate who is now a radiation oncologist in Buffalo, NY, and the cofounder of the Hawai‘i nonprofit Ohana100. “It's about moving our community forward by supporting the next generation of leaders.”
The program is a chance for students to access seasoned professionals in their desired career and gain insight into the necessary steps involved in college and their professional development.
“I have plans to go into the medical field, and Dr. Mattson opened up my perspective of the possibilities and opportunities that I can seek out in medical school and my entire secondary education,” said Kā‘eo Kekumano, a Kapālama junior who plans to major in either biology or biochemistry for his undergraduate degree.
Fellow Kapālama junior, Kamaha‘o Kini Lopes added, “The fact that Dr. Mattson was once a Kamehameha student like all of us, makes my goal of becoming a pharmacist attainable. What he shared will prepare myself on what to expect in college.”
To learn more about Launa ‘Ike and how you can participate as a mentor, please email Chanell Sagon at email@example.com or call (808) 842-8672.