The HLRI task force with the Governor

The Hawai‘i Language Summit, an invitation-only brainstorming meeting designed to delineate the current and future needs for language skills in the state’s workforce, took place Wednesday, March 13 at the Outrigger Reef on the Beach in Waikīkī. Participants from business and local and state government agencies representing the “Demand Side” attended to discuss and outline the situations in their respective organizations where they need language skills currently and in the future. They came together with “Solution Side” participants who represented the education sector, as well as parental communities and legislators who can all shape education policies and programs that respond to the needs delineated during the Summit.

Sen. Daniel Akaka

Also attending were Governor Neil Abercrombie and former Hawai‘i senator, Daniel Akaka, who was presented with the 2013 Language Flagship Leadership Award.

The Language Summit is part of a multi-month process that began in November 2012, with the formation of the Hawai‘i Language Roadmap Initiative Task Force, co-sponsored by the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and The Language Flagship, and spearheaded by LLL Dean Robert Bley-Vroman and Executive Director Susan Duggan. The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, with strong interest from the state of the Hawai‘i’s Governor’s office, is coordinating the Hawai‘i Language Roadmap Initiative. The goal is to create a roadmap for change –in education, in business, in policy, and in the community– to help shape the future multilingual workforce of Hawai‘i.