by Derek Kauanoe 3L

‘Ahahui O Hawai‘i (the Hui) is the oldest student organization at the William S. Richardson School of Law. Through the years, the Hui has supported Native Hawaiian law students, promoted discussion and scholarship on issues impacting the Hawaiian community, and advocated for justice for Native Hawaiians. This is the first in a series of regular columns on the Hui’s projects and activities.

This past year, ‘Ahahui O Hawai‘i offered Law School Admission Test (LSAT) Preparation classes to Native Hawaiians applying to law school. From April 2006 through January 2007, thirty-six prospective students enrolled in LSAT Preparation classes. After participating in the classes, some participants’ scores increased by as much as 10-11 points. The Hui also provided tutoring to assist Native Hawaiian students in their first-year law courses. These programs were made possible through a grant from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and the support of the William S. Richardson School of Law.

In November and December 2006, Hui students prepared food packages, which were delivered to the Weinberg Village transitional housing center in Waimanalo shortly before Christmas. In 2007, Hui members helped to edit a chapter in the forthcoming edition of the NATIVE HAWAIIAN RIGHTS HANDBOOK. During the first Saturday of each month, Hui members also helped to maintain the Kanewai Lo‘i at the Kamakakūokalani Center for Hawaiian Studies.

Finally, the Native American Moot Court team—funded by the Center for Excellence in Native Hawaiian Law and comprised of law students Derek Kauanoe and Jocelyn Macadangdang-Doane, and new team members Moani Crowell, Scott Hovey, Greg Schlais and Anosh Yaqoob—took top honors at the 2007 Native American Moot Court Competition.

After submitting their legal briefs on January 5, 2007, the team began preparing for their oral arguments with “practice judges” comprised of team alumni, school alumni and professors.

The competition was held in Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minnesota on February 16 and 17, and was hosted by four local-area law schools. More than 30 teams participated. Moani Crowell and Greg Schlais placed in the top eight, and Scott Hovey and Anosh Yaqoob, as a team, won first place as Best Advocate. Anosh Yaqoob was also awarded with the second place award for Best Oralist.