More from the Ryukyus

<p>Hawai‘i Governor Neil Abercrombie, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology President Jonathan Dorfan and University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood in Okinawa. Greenwood later toured the campus in northern Okinawa and discussed opportunities for collaboration with the 10-year-old institution.</p>

Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology

Hawai‘i Governor Neil Abercrombie, Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology President Jonathan Dorfan and University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood in Okinawa. Greenwood later toured the campus in northern Okinawa and discussed opportunities for collaboration with the 10-year-old institution.

<p>The University of Hawai‘i delegation toured Shuri Castle, the reconstructed residence and administrative headquarters of Ryukyus kings, in Naha, Okinawa.</p>

Greenwood in Okinawa 2011

The University of Hawai‘i delegation toured Shuri Castle, the reconstructed residence and administrative headquarters of Ryukyus kings, in Naha, Okinawa.

<p>University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood and Hawai‘i Gov. Neil Abercrombie pose playfully with a pair of shisa, Ryukyuan guardian lion/dogs from Okinawa mythology traditionally flanking gates to Okinawan homes to keep good spirits in and frighten evil spirits away.</p>

Greenwood in Okinawa 2011

University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood and Hawai‘i Gov. Neil Abercrombie pose playfully with a pair of shisa, Ryukyuan guardian lion/dogs from Okinawa mythology traditionally flanking gates to Okinawan homes to keep good spirits in and frighten evil spirits away.

<p>University of the Ryukyus President Teruo Iwamasa and  University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood exchanged gifts during a recent visit by a Hawai‘i delegation to the sister univeristy in Okinawa. President Greenwood presented President Iwamasa with a small replica of the Hawaiian Voyaging Canoe Hokule'a as a symbol of the shared ocean between Japan and Hawaii and the rich wayfinding heritage of Polynesia.</p>

Greenwood in Okinawa 2011

University of the Ryukyus President Teruo Iwamasa and University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood exchanged gifts during a recent visit by a Hawai‘i delegation to the sister univeristy in Okinawa. President Greenwood presented President Iwamasa with a small replica of the Hawaiian Voyaging Canoe Hokule'a as a symbol of the shared ocean between Japan and Hawaii and the rich wayfinding heritage of Polynesia.

<p>University of the Ryukyus President Teruo Iwamasa with Hawai‘i Gov. Neil Abercrombie and University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood after the honorary degree presentation in Okinawa.</p>

Greenwood in Okinawa 2011

University of the Ryukyus President Teruo Iwamasa with Hawai‘i Gov. Neil Abercrombie and University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood after the honorary degree presentation in Okinawa.

<p>University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood plants an Okinawan cherry tree with University of the Ryukyus President Teruo Iwamasa near the Administration Building on the Okinawa campus. Originally established on the site of Shuri Castle, which was destroyed in the Battle of Okinawa, in 1950, this national university, like the University of Hawai‘i, builds on the unique natural, cultural and historical characteristics of an archipelago and takes its values from its community's history—nuchi du takara (life is indeed a treasure)—with a commitment to freedom and equality, tolerance and peace.</p>

Okinawa tree planting

University of Hawai‘i President M.R.C. Greenwood plants an Okinawan cherry tree with University of the Ryukyus President Teruo Iwamasa near the Administration Building on the Okinawa campus. Originally established on the site of Shuri Castle, which was destroyed in the Battle of Okinawa, in 1950, this national university, like the University of Hawai‘i, builds on the unique natural, cultural and historical characteristics of an archipelago and takes its values from its community's history—nuchi du takara (life is indeed a treasure)—with a commitment to freedom and equality, tolerance and peace.

Is was my high honor to accept an honorary degree from our sister university, the University of the Ryukyus, in Okinawa. It was bestowed by President Teruo Iwamasa, witnessed by and celebrated with Governor Neil Abercrombie!

Our paths intersected in Okinawa for both the Festival parade and the degree award. Okinawan goodwill ambassadors Bob Nakasone and Ed Kuba (a former UH regent) accompanied us on this visit and were invaluable sources of knowledge and information.

We also visited the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, where I met with officials to discuss potential collaborations.

Governor Abercrombie then traveled on to China to promote Hawaiʻi economic opportunities and tourism, but it was great to have him with us in Okinawa for a few days. Check out our playful posing with the two large shisa statues. President Iwamasa presented both of us with smaller versions of shisa as mementos of our visit.