Evergreen State College recently hosted representatives from the University of Hawai’i at Hilo Hawai’i Community College (HawCC) to explore how HawCC can model an indigenous arts program after Evergreen’s Indigenous Arts Campus and Native Programs Curriculum.

Delegates from HawCC visited the Evergreen campus from Feb. 28 to March 3. Evergreen’s Vice President of Indigenous Arts and Education Tina Kuckkahn-Miller said, “We consider them a sister institute and want to build upon a relationship that’s been growing for decades among the indigenous peoples of the Pacific Northwest and the South Pacific.”

HawCC is planning to host an indigenous arts summer symposium to gauge community interest. The pilot program will focus on indigenous arts, and HawCC hopes it will grow into a two-year program with pathway options for a four-year degree.

“The University of Hawai’i welcomes ways to study indigenous cultures as contributors to society instead of simple observations of their art,” said Gail Mililani Makuakāne-Lundin, director of the UH System Office of Hawai’i Papa O Ke Ao.

Taupōuri Tangarō, professor of Hawai’i Life Styles at HawCC, added: “Evergreen has always inspired us, and we’re here to celebrate this inspiration as we prepare to deliver our Hawaiian indigenous arts program for the advancement of indigenous well-being.”