Aloha Begins with Us
A View from the College
March 12, 2019
Candace M. Tabuchi
Associate Professor, CHE, MBA
Hospitality & Tourism Program Coordinator
Business Ed. Div. Chair
When I sat down to write this article in my office, I faced a familiar sign. A message from our past mayor, Brian Baptiste, that states, “Aloha begins with me”. For an island economy, supported by visitors, we face realities on the impacts of tourism, but how often do we stop and recognize the many benefits we receive from tourism? The Visitor Industry provides jobs, it supports non- profit organizations in our communities, it provides professional development for future leaders, and constructs educational pathways for our youth. Tourism will continue to be a vibrant part of our economy. More importantly, will the values of aloha endure?
Hospitality with aloha is not just for visitors, and it is more than just a friendly smile. Aloha should be a part of our daily lives. It is sharing the fruits and flowers of your gardens with neighbors, it is helping a stranger carry groceries to their car, or offering help to someone in need. The values of aloha should be intertwined into every interaction, beginning with those we meet daily.
Education is a powerful tool, but our cultural values should guide the decisions we make every day. In `ōlelo Hawai`i, kahiau means to give generously with no expectation of receiving something in return. That is a difficult concept for some; however, I believe here in Hawai`i, on Kaua`i, in our communities, and homes, this is a value we know and live. Allow aloha to begin with you, and allow that essence of aloha be shared with each other, including our visitors. To be kind, connected, courteous, humble, patient, and respectful are the values of aloha; these are the values that should be instilled in our lives. These values should guide how we treat our family, friends, and island visitors.
As an instructor of Hospitality and Tourism, I am delighted to see the many students that are interested in careers in the Visitor industry. I am equally confident that they will approach their careers with our treasured sense of aloha.