Recent Conference


Grand Challenges Summer Institute on Water

This institute synergizes multiple professional development opportunities including the first Annual SENCER Hawaiʻi Summer Institute, the UH Sustainability “Many Minds One University,” the Kapiʻolani Service & Sustainability Learning Institute, and the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa College of Social Sciences’ ACCESS/Program for Civic Engagements Workshop Series. The Institute will focus on Indigenous and Western knowledge systems and how they meet to take on the grand challenge of water.

The Institute took place on May 15,16, and 17 (2017) at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

Participation included Water Institute Fellows and General Participants. Fellows were expected to a) attend all three days of the Institute; b) develop a syllabus for a (re)designed course that includes teaching to the grand challenges of water issues; and c) integrate an active pedagogy into the course. Participants will have an opportunity to obtain a UH Sustainability Designation (“S-designation”).

Additional interested formal and informal educators, administrators, and community partners are invited as General Participants to attend and/or present at the Institute (without course (re)design obligation and stipend). Presentations will take place as either TED-style brief inspirational and informational talks or posters focusing on water initiatives and engaging pedagogy. These sessions are intended to convey urgency of dealing with water issues in Hawaiʻi and globally and the need for interdisciplinary research, learning, and collaboration across campuses and with community partners.  


Day 1 (10am to 7pm): Framing and keynote presentations, TED-style talks, work time for teams, poster session and reception

Day 2 (8am- 5pm): Course and project (re)design and assessment workshops interspersed with TED-style engaging presentations.

Day 3 (8am-4pm): Team time & consultations. Presentations of (re)designed courses and projects. S-designation intake and award of scholarship for best curriculum/project. The scholarship will be for participation in the SENCER Summer Institute in New York, Aug. 3-6, 2017, total value $2000 covering program costs as well as lodging and travel (the exact amount is about $1,250 for travel and lodging to use as the awardee see fit).

Spots at this institute are limited and assigned on a first-come-first-serve basis.

You are receiving this invitation based on your previous work, interest, or expertise in the area of engaging pedagogies and issues related to water — kai and wai.

For additional detailed information, please email Institute coordinator, Krista Hiser at

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