homepage logo

Visitor industry awards scholarships to Maui college students

By Staff | Apr 29, 2010

From left, Maui Hotel & Lodging Association Executive Director Carol Reimann congratulates scholarship recipients Ashley Aaron, Michael Wilson, Derek Barona, Natalie O’Brien, Amy Jackson and Maria Isabella Wiberg.

WAILUKU — The Maui Hotel & Lodging Association recently awarded scholarships to six University of Hawaii Maui College spring semester students from proceeds of its annual Excellence in Education Golf Tournament held last fall. 

Four students from the Maui Culinary Academy received $500 and two Business & Hospitality students received $1,000 scholarships. Students were recognized as outstanding achievers by their department coordinators.

Representing the U.H. Maui College Business and Hospitality Department, Ashley Aaron and Maria Isabella Wiberg received $1,000.

Originally from the Big Island, Ashley currently works for a property management firm while maintaining a 3.8 grade point average as a full-time student. Her career goal is to gain experience in all aspects of hotel operations and eventually obtain a management position on Maui.

Originally from Argentina, Isabella is a full-time student with a 3.6 GPA. She is currently employed as a hostess at the Grand Wailea Resort. Her goal is to earn a degree in tourism and pursue a career in sales and marketing.

Maui Culinary Academy (MCA) students who received $500 each include Derek Barona, Amy Jackson, Natalie O’Brien and Michael Wilson.

Born and raised on Maui, Derek is a member of the first graduating Class of 1999 at King Kekaulike High School. He is currently employed at the Four Seasons Wailea’s Spago Restaurant while in his third semester at Maui Culinary Academy. His goal is to earn a degree, launch a food establishment in Hawaii and give back to the community.

Amy previously worked as an Intensive Care Unit nurse in the fast-paced, high-intensity world of trauma for eight years before realizing her real passion. She has volunteered her time in the Fairmont Kea Lani kitchens and plans to earn all three degrees offered at MCA. 

Born and raised on Maui, Natalie credits her single mother for instilling in her the importance of going to college. She currently works at MCA as a product research and development coordinator and enjoys sharing information about the school’s programs. 

Originally from Dallas, Texas, Michael came to Maui to learn the business side of the culinary world with aspirations of owning his own restaurant. After completing the restaurant management program, he decided to continue his education and obtain degrees in the culinary and baking programs. He is currently employed in the bakeshop, in charge of baking all of the bread for the school.

These future industry leaders were honored at Maui No Ka Oi magazine’s Aipono Awards ceremony in the presence of hundreds of business and restaurant industry principals.

“It’s an honor to be able to provide for our future. These students excel in their respective areas and have been awarded for their achievements. We look forward to watching these stellar students turn into the next generation of business leaders,” said Carol Reimann, MHLA executive director.

The 2010 Excellence in Education Golf Tournament will be held on Friday, Aug. 27, at Kaanapali Golf Resort. Call 244-8625 for details.