By Peter Mills, Professor of Anthropology, UH-Hilo
On August 7 (the morning Hurricane Iselle was heading ashore on the Big Island), the Academic Affairs Committee of the University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents voted to approve a new Master of Arts (MA) program in “Heritage Management” at University of Hawai‘i Hilo, which will be administered through the department of anthropology.
The program’s main strengths will be in archaeological heritage, traditional cultural properties, and cultural impact assessments, and will primarily address heritage issues affecting Hawaiʻi and the Pacific. The program is intended to complement UH Mānoa graduate programs offered in applied archaeology (Anthropology Department) and the graduate certificate in Historic Preservation (American Studies Program). One major benefit of having such a program in Hilo is that it will reach a somewhat different pool of descendant community members who can then gain leadership positions within consulting firms, community organizations, and county, state and federal positions related to heritage management. Without the MA program, many UH Hilo students end up working with BA degrees for existing firms, but are barred by state regulations from obtaining leadership positions in those organizations unless they obtain a graduate degree.
The first cohort of eight graduate students is slated to enter the program in the Fall of 2015. In the interim, the UH Hilo anthropology department is conducting a search for new faculty member who will specialize in Pacific Island paleoethnobotany, who will broaden the range of faculty expertise available in the graduate program. The department also intends to hire another faculty member by the Fall of 2016 (when the graduate program will begin teaching the full range of the graduate curriculum) who will specialize in community-based collections management.
Those who may be interested in applying to the program can obtain more information on the UH Hilo Admissions website: http://hilo.hawaii.edu/studentaffairs/admissions/documents/MAHeritageManagement10-2-201411.19.14.pdf .
Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) will be required of all applicants, and priority will be given to applications received by February 1, 2014. E hoʻomākaukau kākou!