UH Maui College professor Elaine Yamashita is among 15 UH faculty members from across the state that have been selected as recipients of the University of Hawaii Board of Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Teaching; three received the Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research. In addition, seven UH teachers have been recognized with the Frances Davis Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching.
“Our outstanding University of Hawaiʻi educators, scholars and staff are some of the best in the world,” said President David Lassner. “We honor their dedication and commitment to address global challenges, to prepare our students to make a difference in the world around them, and to make the University of Hawaiʻi better every day.”
The Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Teaching recognizes faculty who exhibit an extraordinary level of subject mastery and scholarship, teaching effectiveness and creativity, and personal values beneficial to students.
Yamashita is a professor in UHMC’s Department of Social Sciences. Her role in developing the school’s early childhood program was instrumental in bringing the Head Start facility on campus, which provides care for 3- to 5-year-old keiki of UHMC students from low-income families. The facility also provides hands-on training for Yamashita’s early childhood program students.
Professor Yamashita joined the college in 1992, bringing with her more than a decade of experience in childhood education. She rose to program coordinator in 1999 and then served in leadership positions in state and national boards governing policy and development of education for young children.
As a proud product of Maui’s public education system, Yamashita’s legacy is to ensure quality training and compensation is available to those in the field of early learning “so that they can continue to make early childhood education programs better for all our keiki and their ʻohana.”
Photos courtesy UH