Maunakea Scholars is an innovative program designed to bring Hawai‘i’s aspiring young astronomers into the observatory community, competitively allocating observing time on world-class telescopes to local students. This is the first program of its kind internationally, leveraging the most powerful collection of telescopes in the world for the direct educational advancement of Hawai‘i’s high school students.
For centuries Native Hawaiians were expert astronomers and navigated their way to Hawai‘i using their profound knowledge of the stars. With astronomy having such a deeply rooted connection to Hawaiian culture, ‘Imiloa Astronomy Center has partnered with Maunakea Scholars to help ground the program in a cultural context focused on Maunakea. This helps students understand the importance of Maunakea as a site revered across Polynesia for its cultural roots, and across the world as earth’s best portal on the universe.