An Alumnus Shares the Gift of a Hanalani Education with His Son

As alumnus David Wee (’01) reflects on his time at Hanalani Schools, he remembers the words of his former basketball coach and teacher Mr. Robert Araki, “What you learn on the court, you’ll use in life.”
This is an apt description of his time at Hanalani. As co-captain of Hanalani Schools’ varsity basketball and volleyball teams for three years, David learned valuable life skills along the way. “Coach Araki taught us how to have discipline on and off the court, manage our time, and how to handle relationships,” says David. “He taught us how to become good men.”

Guided By Faith Upon a Winding Path
In fact, David credits Hanalani teachers like Coach Araki for being one of many people who helped instill good values and develop a strong foundation to stand upon. After graduating, David attended the University of Hawaii at Mānoa and received his Bachelor's degree in Business Management in 2005. He then tried his hand at several professions: he was an Account Manager for Toshiba, worked for a staffing agency and then helped his mother with her private medical practice after his father passed away.

He eventually started an apprenticeship at the Pearl Harbor Navy Shipyard. He excelled for five years before eventually being promoted to a managerial position.

Now as an adult, David says Hanalani’s focus on providing students with strong writing, speaking and communicating skills helped him succeed at every job. As a work integration leader at Pearl Harbor, David serves as a manager and liaison between the shipyard and outside contractors.

Training Up His Child in the Way He Should Go
The decision to send their child to Hanalani was something he and his wife, Cheree, have embraced because of his positive experiences there. The school’s development and modernization over the past decade with its STEAM program (STEM + Arts), including the robotics program and new gym, really impressed this former Royal.

“Hanalani Schools partners with us, the parents, to provide a solid Christian foundation for our children,” says David. “For many high school students, as soon as they graduate, they are on their own and they are exposed to many new good and bad situations. I believe that with a good foundation at home that’s mirrored at school, your child has a better chance to lead a positive and productive life.”