CONFESSIONS OF A UH GRADUATE

Monday, May 17th, 2010 by

Congrats to our dear friend, Daniel Ito. A real life Van Wilder.

Confessions of a UH Graduate
By Daniel Ikaika Ito/Editor of Contrast Magazine

I wish I could have worn the Fitted’s UH Gray New Era during the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa graduation ceremony at Stan Sheriff Center on Saturday. I would have looked so gangster when UH Chancellor Virginia Hinshaw gave me my diploma and shook my hand like one of the boys . I actually made Chancellor shake my hand homie-style and give me a the one-armed hug. “Bring it in for the real thing, Chancellor,” I said when accepting my bachelor’s of arts in journalism. She played it off well and congratulated me. Yes, of course I tweeted it.

After a brief Kenny Powers’ dance in front of the video camera, I returned to my seat and looked up to the balcony where my parents, brothers and friends were sitting. I then realized that going back to college was the right move to make. Although I never needed my degree to find success as a journalist, I now know that my experience at UH will only benefit myself, family and career.

As I type on the new Apple Macbook I received as graduation gift I’m fully aware that swallowing my pride and burying my nose in the books built more character than I had before and increased my swagger exponentially. If I can juggle freelancing as surf journalist for three publications, working public relations for the Vans Triple Crown of Surfing, starting Contrast Magazine and being a full-time student then there is nothing I can’t handle in my work.

So I say to the Class of 2010, “Congrats! Remember to always champion Hawai‘i and hustle like there’s no tomorrow.” And I say to my professors and alma matter, “Thanks for the stress and debt.” Now it’s time to make that paper.