Jolene Hirata was awarded the 2018 Rachel Leilani Gangwes Scholarship of $1,000 by community partner and nonprofit, Hawaii Rise Foundation. This scholarship was sponsored in partnership with Kealani Gangwes, in memory of her late sister, Rachel Leilani Gangwes, who was born with Edwards Syndrome (Trisomy 18). While most children do not live past their first birthday, Rachel persevered overwhelming odds to bless her family, friends, and community with eighteen years of love and joy. Rachel reminded everyone that every day is a gift with which you must do your best to uplift others, through words and actions.
An active member of her community, Jolene graduated from Waiakea High School in May 2019. She enjoys playing softball and volunteering at the Hawaii Pacific Oncology Center. Her career goal is to become a registered nurse. She will be attending Saint Martin’s University/Dr. Pamela J. Holsinger-Fuchs in the fall of 2019.
Congratulations Jolene on your award and Hawaii Rise Foundation is so excited to see what is in store for you on your journey!