Thursday, February 17, 2011

Bishop Museum Offers Hawaiian Hall Training

Training course for prospective cultural docents begins on April 12

Bishop Museum's Certified Hawaiian Hall Docent program begins its rigorously fascinating training for Hawaiian Hall Docents on April 12 at its Kapalama campus. The six-week training required for all Hawaiian Hall docents, meets twice weekly on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:00- 6:00 p.m.

For more than a century, Hawaiian Hall has housed the Museum's most sacred and beloved artifacts, those closest to the ali'i roots of the Museum. To enrich the experience of the thousands of visitors who visit this special place each year, Bishop Museum's Hawaiian Hall Docents take the visitors on a journey where they emerge with a deeper understanding of Hawai'i, the Hawaiians and the events that make our community what it is today. To ensure that the Hawaiian Hall docents are well prepared to share their knowledge and experiences with adults as well as school children, Bishop Museum offers the Certified Docent Program annually to any interested volunteers.

Bishop Museum 's Culture Education Staff designed the program to provide a deeper understanding of native Hawaiian life, culture, history and traditions through the Hawaiian worldview lens of the Hawaiian Hall exhibits. Afternoon classes take place twice a week and are led by Rona Rodenhurst and the cultural educators from the Museum. The 36 classroom hours will be followed by shadowing and participation in daily and school programs with final certification by the Cultural Education staff.

Upon completion of the program, certified docents begin the rich and rewarding experience of volunteering at the Museum as Hawaiian Hall docents. Volunteer docents are asked to volunteer a minimum of two hours per week or eight hours per month.

Anyone interested in the Hawaiian Hall Docent Certification Program should contact Athena Sparks at 847-8239 or by email at by April 1.

The Bishop Museum was founded in 1889 by Charles Reed Bishop in memory of his wife Bernice Pauahi Bishop, the last direct descendant of King Kamehameha I. Today, the Museum is recognized as the principal museum of the Pacific, housing the world's largest collection of Hawaiian and Pacific artifacts and natural history specimens. More than 340,000 people visit the Museum each year, including over 50,000 schoolchildren. For more information, please call (808) 847-3511 or visit