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Applications sought for cultural scholarship

By Staff | Aug 27, 2020

KAHULUI – The Japanese Cultural Society of Maui has launched its 2020 round of scholarship applications, which is a $1,000 nonacademic, cultural scholarship that calls for students who graduated from a high school in Maui this year.

JCSM will vet and select three applicants who have a record of community involvement, specifically in the perpetuation of the Japanese culture, and have an intent to continue.

This could be in performing or martial arts, Japanese crafts, preservation of traditional customs, culinary arts, visual arts and anime, pop culture, fashion, business and technology, history, and many other areas.

And, beginning this year, JCSM will also select one $1,000 recipient of the Asa Ellison Memorial Scholarship Award for an applicant who has shown grit in learning and in the perpetuation of the Japanese language.

JCSM honors its late president, Ellison, who unexpectedly passed away in March because of cancer.

Ellison was a tour guide with JTB, an amazing photographer and served on the JCSM board for many years. He began learning Nihongo (Japanese language) as a student of then-Maui Community College and fully embraced the Japanese culture since.

Ellison spoke Japanese fluently and often spoke about the importance of perpetuating the language in JCSM’s mission.

“The organization mourns our dear friend Asa’s passing, and coupled with the challenges brought by the pandemic, our scholarship program is a bit late this year – but better late than never,” said Deron Furukawa, who serves as an interim president.

“It’s a difficult time for everyone, and we know the money will help. We also decided to honor Asa’s memory and his love for the Japanese language by supporting our scholars.”

The Asa Ellison Memorial Scholarship is given to an applicant who may be studying the language, teaching the language, or has demonstrated commitment to use the language moving forward.

Eligibility and requirements to apply are the same.

The application form is available at jcsmaui.org, and the deadline to submit is Oct. 15.

E-mail jcsmhawaii@gmail.com for inquiries.