March 30, 2016

I sought out to interview Mr. Kimura, the Health Academy teacher and the advisor of HOSA. Scheduling an appointment was hard enough, the interview itself was even difficult.

Having Mr. Kimura personally as a student, I approached his classroom knowing this interview was going to be hard to set up. So I over prepared it, with the questions in my hand, ready to deliver them. However, he stopped me even before I could ask my first question. “Where are your credentials?” he asked. I froze knowing that he knew I didn’t have one. I explained to him that this was the first year of the Kalani’s newspaper, and we were just started publishing this year. He hesitated knowing this was an excuse that I created, but allowed me ask my questions.

As I started asking my questions, I noticed that he was picking each word carefully stating only the necessary words.

I asked him about his responsibility and his role in the Health Academy and HOSA as well as acknowledged his abilities to lead them. However, insteading of accepting my acknowledgment toward him, he gave the credit to his students. He stated, “I don’t think I lead the Health Academy. I do almost nothing. Students lead the health academy, they determine what they want to do. All I do is help them challenge them to find their identity.” He made sure that I understood that he was there for the students and not the other way around.

As I continued interviewing Mr. Kimura, his lively answers definitely reflected his personality.

Challenging, people find their identity when they’re challenged.

  1. What is your purpose in leading the Health Academy?

I don’t think I lead the Health Academy. I do almost nothing. Students lead the health academy, They determine what they want to do. All I do is help them challenge them to find their identity.

  1. What opportunities do students get to have upon being part of the Health Academy?

Wear scrubs every week nah I’m kidding. Opportunities to be part of a group of individuals that are trying to understand and develop their identity.

  1. What are your expectations for your students in the Health Academy?

I expect them to realize their full potential to create some direction so they can find their personal or professional identity.

  1. Do you see your students changing throughout the time they are in the Health Academy? How so?

Instead of seeking answers, they make choices of what they are going to do.

  1. Where do you see the Health Academy in the next couple years?

Think about this, 10 years ago we started with 20 students. Today, (which is 10 years later) we have 120 students. We started with 0 mentors from the community. Today we have 74 mentors that help mentor students in the community. Our students have built relationship with different organizations, whether it’s private or a major organization. For example, an organization like Kahala nui or a private dentist. We have mentors that continue to mentor our students, they have mentored 9 or 10 of our students through our existence. I don’t know what we can grow in that.. not necessary in numbers but in enhancing the relationship that we have for these people. We have an alumni that comes in to share to the current students.

  1. Any words for students that are interested in joining the Health Academy?

 Come join the Madness!

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