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Focus on Generation Z


This special edition of HIKI NŌ highlights some of the best stories from the winter quarter of the 2015-16 school year. Besides being excellent stories, the features in this compilation were also selected for how they reflect the values of Generation Z: people born in 1995 or later. HIKI NŌ students, currently middle and high schoolers, are part of Generation Z. National surveys show that, in general, Gen Z-ers are tech-savvy entrepreneurs who are very aware of the world’s problems and are looking for practical ways to solve them. They are empathetic to others, socially conscious, tend not be gender or age biased and share an affinity with senior citizens.


The stories featured in this compilation, along with the Gen Z trends they reflect, are:


“A Home for Larenzo” (Waianae Intermediate School – Oahu)
A student leader at the Waianae Boys and Girls Club is found to be homeless.
Gen Z trend: They are growing up in a post 9/11 world during a recession, with 1 in 4 American children living in poverty.


“Science Teacher” (Sacred Hearts Academy – Oahu)
A female science teacher at an all-girls school receives national recognition from President Obama.
Gen Z trend: Traditional gender roles are being challenged.


“Ukulele Hale” (Mid-Pacific – Oahu)
An ukulele virtuoso decides to open his own music school rather than be employed by someone else’s school.
Gen Z trend: Entrepreneurship is in their DNA.


“Dog Wheelchair” (Chiefess Kamakahelei Middle School – Kauai)
An 8th grade girl uses an engineering app to design and build a wheelchair for her disabled dog.
Gen Z trend: They use technology to solve problems.


“Deaf Cheerleader” (Maui High School – Maui)
A deaf high school student is determined to do everything her hearing peers can do, including being part of the Junior Varsity cheerleading squad.
Gen Z trend: They are empathetic and accepting of differences.


“Joe Young” (Kapaa Middle School – Kauai)
A retired police officer beats prostate cancer without surgery, radiation, or chemotherapy. His cure: leading a happy life.
Gen Z trend: They have a great affinity and respect for elders.


“Iloreta Brothers” (Kapaa High School – Kauai)
A young man with Cerebral Palsy and his brother participate in long distance runs to promote their social awareness campaign called “I Am My Ability, I Am Not My Disability.”
Gen Z trend: They exhibit social entrepreneurship.


This edition of HIKI NŌ is hosted by HIKI NŌ alumna, University of Hawaii at Manoa Communications/Political Science major, and Gen Z-er Shisa Kahaunaele.


This program encores Saturday, April 9 at 12:00 pm and Sunday, April 10 at 3:00 pm. You can also view HIKI NŌ episodes on our website, www.pbshawaii.org/hikino.