Hawaiian Scholars Doctoral Fellowship Program

The Kohala Center is pleased to announce the Hawaiian Scholars Doctoral Fellowship Program. The program is designed for Native Hawaiian scholars early in their academic careers and others who advance the knowledge of Hawai‘i’s natural and cultural landscape and Hawaiian history, politics, and society. The fellowship supports the development of kama‘?ina (native-born) intellectual leadership for Hawai‘i’s schools, universities, and research agencies. Through the program, doctoral fellows are given the opportunity to complete their dissertations before accepting their first academic posts. Each Doctoral fellows will receive $45,000 in support during the fellowship period and will also receive $1,500 in support toward conference expenses.

The Kohala Center was founded in the year 2000, it is an independent, community-based center for research, conservation, and education. They turn research and ancestral knowledge into action, so that communities in Hawai‘i and around the world can thrive—ecologically, economically, culturally, and socially. Our main areas of focus are food, water, place, and people.


Native Hawaiian scholars in any residential or external degree program of a fully accredited U.S.-based institution, or institutions abroad, such as the native university system in Aotearoa (New Zealand), are eligible.

How to Apply:

To apply, the applicants can download cover sheet through the given link: http://kohalacenter.org/docs/resources/hischolars/4-HIScholars_Application_Cover_Sheet_2017-2018.pdf

Supporting Documents:

  • Your Curriculum Vitae include the following information: Education, Employment, Honors & Awards, Publications & Presentations, Community Service, Membership in Professional and/or Scholarly Associations
  • Two letters of reference
  • Abstract- Submit a one-page (maximum length, double-spaced) abstract of your dissertation
  • Statement of Purpose- Submit a two-page (maximum length, double-spaced) statement of purpose.
  • Autobiography- Submit a four-page autobiographical essay (maximum length, double-spaced) to describe how significant experiences and relationships in your life have contributed to your development as a scholar, a person and a member of society.
  • Self-Assessment Statement Submit a self-assessment statement (two pages in length maximum, double-spaced), indicating your readiness to focus on your writing during the fellowship period. include discussions of
  • How you will manage personal and professional responsibilities so that you can devote full time to your writing
  • access to resources both academic and nonacademic that will support your full-time writing effort
  • Mentoring Contract- Submit a mentoring agreement (two pages in length maximum, double-spaced) that outlines the planned working relationship with your mentor.
  • A sample of Writing Project Doctoral fellowship award applicants. Submit an outline of your dissertation (this may be a preliminary outline) with a sample of the writing that will be a part of your dissertation (20-page maximum).

Submitting Details:

All completed applications must be sent by email in PDF format to Cortney Okumura at cokumura-at-kohalacenter.org. In the subject line of the email, include: “Fellowship Program Application: [Your name]”.

The two letters of reference should be emailed directly to Cortney Okumura from the person providing the reference, or they may be sent in a sealed/signed envelope to:

Cortney Okumura
TheKohala Center
P.O. Box 437462
Kamuela, Hawai‘i 96743

Hawaiian Scholars Doctoral Fellowship Program

Financial Aid and Award Money:

  • Doctoral Fellows receive $45,000 in support during the fellowship period.
  • Fellows are required to attend a professional conference of their choosing together. Each fellow will receive $1,500 in support toward conference expenses. This support is in addition to fellows’ stipends.
  • Candidates are also expected to select a mentor for the year of the program. Mentors are expected to be experts in the fellows’ fields of research and should be willing to work with the fellows to:
  • Complete their writing project
  • Help fellows gain access to scholarly and professional networks, especially to publishing circles
  • Finally, to help fellows establish a firm footing in their new academic careers.
  • Mentors are further expected to have attained senior status in their fields of expertise. Mentors are usually tenured and experienced in leadership positions in scholarly or professional societies. Mentors will receive a $1,000 honorarium and will be expected to attend scholarly presentations in November 2017. Mentors are expected to be at scholarly presentations of the fellows on Hawai‘i Island in the fall of 2017. Travel expenses will be provided for mentors.

Application Deadline:

The complete application must be submitted by 5 p.m. Hawaii time, Monday, June 26, 2017.Notification of awards will be made by Monday, July 17, 2017.

Link for More information:


Contact information:

If you have any question about the fellowship program, contact Cortney Okumura at cokumura-at-kohalacenter.org or at 808-887-6411.

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