Author: Kim Baxter

Alyssa Batara

Alyssa Batara is a fourth-year KCC student taking her pre-requisites for nursing. Batara has lived in Hawaii her entire life and eventually plans to transfer to either Chaminade or HPU when finished here. During her senior year of high school, Batara had originally thought of majoring in fashion designing but said that it would be hard to go to the mainland for school without any family around. Batara said that her pre-requisites for nursing are very interesting; she is currently studying zoology and microbiology. She stated that it’s all about memorizing detail for exams that help her to understand her assignments.

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Lara Domogma and Rhea Aninag

Lara Domogma (right) is the president of the Bayanihan Club at KCC, and Rhea Aninag (left) is the secretary of the Bayanihan Club. Together with the rest of the club, Lara and Rhea strive to share Filipino culture and values with the rest of the school.

“Filipino culture has been a big part of me since I was growing up,” Lara said. “For every decision I make, Filipino culture has been part of it. For example, my parents treat me differently because they’re from the Philippines.”

“You know how there’s a lot of Filipino-Americans living in Hawai‘i and America? Well, a lot of them do not know their Filipino heritage,” Rhea said. “I want to bring that up to these students who may or may not know their heritage. With this club, we hope to help them gain more knowledge about Philippines’ history, values, and culture.”

Lara and Rhea have brought the Filipino community at KCC together by organizing events such as giving away free halo-halo, a Filipino dessert similar to shave ice, and a karaoke party.

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Keahi Williams

Keahi Williams is a first-year student at KCC and a single mother as well. After facing many obstacles in life and battling through homelessness since that age of 14, Keahi found the willpower to take herself out of that situation and do what was best for her and her son.

“I had a backup plan…” Keahi said. “My life choices led me to fall back on my plan.”

Keahi’s struggles led her to leave Hawai‘i and move to California twice, and she’s also stayed in countless shelters throughout her life. She even went through job programs, like the Job Corps. After settling down and enrolling her son in school, Keahi made a plan to enroll at KCC.

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Roselle Mallari

Roselle Mallari is a second-year KCC student taking prerequisite classes for the Nursing Program. Roselle became inspired to pursue nursing after partaking in the HOSA program in high school. She was born and raised in Hawaii, but lived briefly in San Diego because her dad is in the Navy. Roselle enjoys travel, and visited Los Angeles this past summer for the annual KCON event. She is an avid K-Pop fan and catches up on the latest music using Twitter.

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Naomi Brown

Naomi Brown, a KCC student majoring in Spanish, shows off a mehndi (henna) design by her friend Michaela Bajaj on Thursday afternoon on campus. Though normally done for a special occasion, Naomi just saw it as a way to spend some time with her friend. Michaela’s designs are completely unplanned.

Naomi sees the design on her hand as a good opportunity for her sign language class “because the hands are a big part of the conversation.”

For more information on Michaela’s designs, please contact her on Facebook at Bajaj Mehndi.

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Janelle You

Janelle You, a KCC student majoring in teaching English as a second language, takes part in a jam session with her friends.

“I was a professional Taiko drummer in L.A. for the past two and a half years. I started when I was seven, so almost all my life. I’m originally from Maui, I had to finish up school before traveling around, and have a back up plan. So this is my first time living in Oahu. Just this past semester is my first semester (at KCC). I went to the University of Pittsburg in Pennsylvania first before I transferred here, and when I moved to California I pursued a Taiko drum major. I took classes in Santa Monica college. Right now I’m taking a break but I hope to get back into it. I’m just singing with friends now.”

When asked about the name of her music group, she and her friends jokingly suggest the “Shin-anigans” due to the guitarist’s surname being Shin.

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Poll

Would you feel comfortable in a face-to-face classroom -- with social distancing measures in place -- in the fall?

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Voices & Views

  • Ryan SacroRyan Sacro
    Ryan is a first-year student at KCC in the Culinary Arts Program. The inspiration for his choice of study and his love of all cuisines can be traced back to his mother, who by all accounts is an excellent chef. When not playing basketball or hanging out with friends off campus, you can find Ryan leading a lively Bible study with fellow KCC students on Fridays in the ‘Iliahi Courtyard. The group is called One by One and they are affiliated with the Oʻahu Church of Christ, with services at UH Mānoa. Reading the Bible “deepens your relationship with God, and you learn a lot about your character,” says Ryan. His Bible study group also volunteers at a homeless shelter in Waimānalo on the weekends.

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