News & Events

News & Events

Museum Studies Alumni named Head of Collection, Information and Digital Assets at the LA County Museum of Art 


Congratulations to Maja Clark! 

Recently the UH Alumni Office posted a video profile of one of our Museum Studies (and LIS) graduates, Maja Clark.  Maja is now the Head of Collection, Information and Digital Assets, at the LA County Museum of Art, in Los Angeles.  Maja was previously the registrar at Shangri La where she supervised student interns and hired a few of our students, two of whom are still working there (shout out to Bethany Bannister-Andrews and Heather Terstegge!).  Maja received an MLIS degree from UHM after she completed her certificate in Museum St.

All of us who worked with Maja are delighted by her success!

Jill Laughlin Named UH Employee of the Year 

September 21, 2015

The UH Museum Studies would like to congratulate Jill Laughlin, Education Specialist at the Lyon Arboretum, for being named UH Employee of the Year! Jill has worked with many of our Museum Studies students, both undergraduates and graduates. She exemplifies what it means to be an inspiring and caring educator. Mahalo Jill for all your work at the arboretum!

About Laughlin

Laughlin joined the Lyon Arboretum team in 1992 and has contributed immensely to the development of educational and volunteer programs that strengthen the arboretum’s presence and outreach in the community. The arboretum hosts approximately 50,000 visitors each year who participate in classes, research projects and activities and Laughlin has been instrumental in developing and facilitating non-credit education classes, workshops, special projects and K–8 education programs as well as programs open for the general public.

Under her management, Lyon Arboretum hosts 7,000 K–12 students per year as well as a number university students, community groups and volunteers. This includes designing and developing educational materials, coordinating volunteer operations and maintaining an active and rigorous events calendar.

Laughlin has also brought the arboretum into the digital age by boosting their social media presence and QR code and audio guide by cell tour and improving the Lyon Arboretum website and mobile app.

Said Lyon Arboretum Director Carl Evensen “Jill has selflessly and vigorously supported many facets of Lyon Arboretum’s mission in research and education and greatly increased the University of Hawaiʻi’s presence and stature in the community. Through her efforts, Lyon Arboretum has been able to offer exceptional education services to many individuals and groups throughout Hawaiʻi.

Jean Pitman: A Museum Studies Graduate Success Story

June 24, 2014

In the summer of 2013, a group of teenagers and an educator from the Wexner Center for the Arts spread out across a low-income neighborhood just a few blocks from the Ohio State campus. They fought through rain, sunburn and blistered feet to gather community members’ stories about life during a time of transition and turned it into art: the “Weinland Park Story Book.”

– See more at:

– Read the Weinland Park Story Book online:

Source: The Ohio State University, 2014.

2014 Hawaii Museums Association Conference 

April 2,2014

Museums 2020: Vision & Visitors

Japanese Cultural Center of Hawai’i
Manoa Grand Ballroom, 5th Floor
2454 S Beretania St.
Honolulu, HI 96826
Program Schedule [PDF]

Understanding and Engaging Museum Visitors

Visitor Studies/Satisfaction Evaluator will give an overview of what we know about museum visitors and how we know those things. Thanks to a growing body of research and evaluation, we have a lot of information about how visitors behave, and how to engage and support them. The point of doing evaluation and visitor studies in our institutions is to see how well we are doing at using best practices in experience development. Are we succeeding in engaging visitor and achieving our goals with them? Of course, successful visitor experiences are at the core of our missions and a basis of institutional survival. This talk will address: 1) known information about visitors and what they need, 2) simple tools for evaluation and visitor studies that most institutions can handle in-house, and 3) when it makes sense to work with an outside expert.

Wendy began her deep association with museums as a student, volunteer and staff member during the 1970’s. Focusing on the visitor experience though evaluation and visitor studies weaves together her professional background in educational travel, performing arts, non-profit development, and museum management. For the past 17 years she has enjoyed consulting with a wide variety of institutions to help them bring the visitor voice into exhibit and program development. Wendy is currently working with the Exploratorium in San Francisco, the Oakland Museum of California, the San Luis Obispo Museum of Art, Chabot Space & Science Center, and the Bishop Museum. She holds an MA in Museum Studies from San Francisco State University, and BA’s in Anthropology and Tourism Management, and a Certificate of Latin American Studies from Michigan State University. She is a contributing author to several online and print publications. Wendy is a frequent guest lecturer at several universities and has spoken and presented workshops on visitor studies internationally.

What’s New & Changing: Digital Initiatives at Home and Abroad 

Karen Kosasa, Director, Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program at U.H. Manoa with be the moderator of this panel discussion with graduate students from the University of Hawai‘i enrolled in Museum Studies, Historic Preservation, Library Information and Sciences, and/or Education programs. They will present a review of new and ongoing digital projects in Hawai‘i and the continental U.S. This survey will provide a glimpse of exciting initiatives in collections care, preservation, exhibition design, education, community outreach, and website design to name only a few areas of interest. Presenters will explain how these projects are changing the ways we engage with museums, visitor centers, historic homes, and related places. The Q&A session will provide an opportunity for audience members to ask questions, share information about their institutions’ digital initiatives, and voice excitement, concern, and skepticism about where these projects may be taking us.

Cultural Heritage Tourism & the Visitor Industry 

Talk story with Kiersten Faulkner, Executive Director, Historic Hawaii Foundation and Kainoa Daines, Director of Sales, Oahu Visitors Bureau: A significant majority of visitors to Hawai‘i include activities to places and activities that represent the stories and people of the past. These “heritage travelers” provide opportunities for preserving and interpreting the history and culture of the Islands, but also present challenges to retain authenticity and relevance. The panel will explore the benefits, opportunities, challenges and barriers related to heritage tourism. The session will provide an overview of what is cultural heritage tourism and demographics of this visitor; the relationship to historic preservation; and five principles of a good heritage tourism program. The session will include audience discussion on what has worked, or not, at heritage attractions.

Roundtable Discussions on topics such as: Public Programs, Volunteers/Docents, Social Media, Visitor Satisfaction, and Education.

Downloadable Presentations 

To download other HMA presentations, please click below.

Politics of Representation Symposium

Oct 10, 2013

Come and join us for “The Politics of Representation: Reflections on Controversial Issues in Museums and Related Places in Japan and Hawai‘i,”Nov. 1-2, Center for Korean Studies. The keynote address will take place at Bishop Museum on Nov. 1st, 6-8 p.m.  All events are free and open to the public.

The Museum Studies program is the co-sponsor of the symposium along with the Hawai‘i Council for the Humanities and the UH Presidential Center Initiative.

Information for the symposium and registration can be found at the following website address:

Thank you very much for your support!

2013-Politics of Representation-Flyer

2013-Politics of Representation-Additional Info copy

Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program Co-Sponsoring Manga Exhibition

Aug 28, 2013

Crossing Cultures: The Art of Manga in Hawaii Gallery Iolani at Windward Community College, September 6-October 2, 2013

Opening Reception: Friday, September 6, 4-7p.m.

Gallery ‘Iolani presents Crossing Cultures: The Art of Manga in Hawai‘i. This exhibition brings together Hawai‘i based artists and writers who use manga to explore their cross-cultural experiences—telling stories that examine the history and cultures of Hawai‘i. Manga is a distinctive form of Japanese comics known for its dynamic graphics and diverse narratives.

The exhibition includes an overview of manga’s origins in Japanese art history including reproductions of scrolls and books that serve to influence the creative imagery of today’s manga being created in Hawai‘i. The featured artists are Roy Chang and his moralizing illustrations for Cacy & Kiara and the Curse of the Ki‘i; Jon J. Murakami, and his action drawings of Gordon Rider; Audra Ann Furuichi and Scott Yoshinaga’s adorable series nemu*nemu; Marisa Torigoe’s mysteriously rendered The Children of ‘Aumākua; and Damon Wong’s somber but hopeful graphics for Journey of Heroes: The Story of the 100th Infantry Battalion and the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, among many other manga artists and writers. Displayed as a part of the exhibition and drawn just for this exhibit is a manga that chronicles its history and development into a worldwide phenomenon.

Location information:

Gallery ‘Iolani
Windward Community College
45-720 Keaahala Road
Kaneohe, HI 96744
(808) 236-9155

Archived Events 2014

The Museum of You: A Talk by Jake Barton

The UHM Museum Studies Graduate Certificate Program would like to invite you to The Museum of You: A Talk by Jake Barton which will be held at the Shidler College of Business in Room A102 on August 27, 2014 at 6:00 PM.
As the media and exhibit designer for the 9/11 Memorial Museum, the Eisenhower Memorial and the Cleveland Museum of Art, Jake Barton understands that a diversity of visitor experiences can make the observer an active participant in the exhibit, creating a “Museum of You.”
In this moving talk, Jake will give a peek at some of those installations and guide you to imagine the possibilities for future museum experiences in Hawai‘i.
Parking Information
If you do not have a campus parking pass, it is $6.00 to part at the lower campus structure or you can use any of the green kiosk parking stalls on campus.
Saturday, August 10, 2013
International Council of Museums (ICOM) General Conference
August 10-17, 2013
Sunday, October 21, 2012
Western Museums Association Annual Meeting
“Restore and Rejuvinate: Our Cultural & Natural Resources”
October 21-24, 2012
Tuesday, July 24, 2012
Visitors Studies Association Annual Conference
“Knowing our Past, Shaping our Future: What’s Next for Visitor Studies?”
July 24-28, 2012
Monday, June 4, 2012
2012 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries and Museums
2012 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries and Museums
June 4-7, 2012