First Event USC – "PULE"

November first this month was the first event for USC’s cleverly acronymed “PULE” Pacific Islander student group. I know that pule in the Hawaiian language means to pray. I think also Sāmoans and Tongans use the same or a similar word. Anyhow the group name stands for Promoting Unity, Liberation, and Education. The groups mission is to focus on Pacific Islander community-building and cross-cultural engagement.

The event was a panel discussion with Pacific Islander leaders from various fields. Including architect Faleomavaego Falanai Ala, a medical researcher Dr. Ray Samoa, mentor and educator David Ga’oupu Palaita. Also to my surprise there was another hapa kanaka woman filmmaker there as well named Jennifer Akana Sturla. I have just watched her film Kamea on Vimeo and it is amazing.

David Palaita is doing awesome work in the Bay Area starting the first ever Pacific Islander studies program. Which is a totally historic and ground breaking accomplishment. Right now it is just starting up, but you can track the progress at their blog:

It was a really cool night and I was glad that I went.

Pacific Islander film crew. From left to right Jennifer Akana Sturla, me, and Danny Ve’evalu

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