Leadership Exploration Inspiration

12th Annual LEI Recap

12th Annual LEI (Leadership Exploration Inspiration) 2024

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Hawaii preserves the island in means of taking care of their people and those who wish to experience the true meaning of aloha. Over time, Hawaii eventually became the most desirable destination to visit, putting the hospitality and tourism as the leading industry on each of the islands. ClimbHI’s effort to promote jobs to local Continue Reading

Sheralyn Soliven University of Hawaii, Maui College April 28, 2017

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Celebrating 12 years of LEI

In April 2024, ClimbHI will kick off the 12th annual LEI program. LEI is a workforce development project to inspire Hawaiʻi youth to select careers in the Hawaiʻi visitor industry by providing them with the necessary means to achieve success. From the student’s perspective LEI represents an opportunity for Leadership, Exploration, and Inspiration, and from the hospitality industry’s perspective LEI provides an opportunity to Lead, Expose, and Inspire Hawaiʻi’s youth. LEI 2024 will take place on four different islands (Maui, Oʻahu, Kauaʻi, and the Big Island), include 1,000 high school and college students from across the state, and involve over 100 businesses.

The events will be held at the following locations on each island:

  • Maui – Thursday, April 4th at the Fairmont Kea Lani
  • Oahu – Monday, April 22nd at the Hawaii Convention Center
  • Kauai – Tuesday, April 16th at the Sheraton Kauai Resort
  • Hawaii Island – Tuesday, April 9th – Wednesday, April 10th at Westin Hapuna Beach Resort

Example of LEI Full-Day Schedule

9:15am-10:30am: Students will engage with industry members and participate in activities to get an overview of the different departments in the hospitality industry

11:00am-1:00pm: Luncheon with leadership and inspiration through guest speakers and Hawaiian culture/sense of place trainings.

2:00pm- 3:30pm: Exposure fair to expose students to the variety of roles in Hawaiʻi’s leading industries and post-secondary education opportunities.

3:30pm-4:00pm: Program Closing, Awards, and Remarks

To get a glimpse of LEI, please use the link below to view a short video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rFaM7nDZFNw

To get involved as a business or volunteer or to inquire about participation as a high school or college student, please reach out to helpdesk@climbhi.org.

Strong connections made with students:
The Aloha Spirit was something that I knew well and it’s like second nature to me. Hospitality, on the other hand, was something that I had never thought of considering. Going into this program, I had never considered the opportunities hospitality had to offer. The LEI program had opened my eyes to how sharing the Aloha Spirit was not only important to us but the tourists that explore our home. The experience truly was awe-inspiring. It was such an eye-opening event that forever changed my outlook on leadership, hospitality, and the Aloha Spirit.

Throughout the program, I had felt completely comfortable being around everyone. Everyone was so quick to become friends with everyone that I felt the urge to create new friendships. The overall experience of connecting with other school leaders and enjoying ourselves was one of the highlights of the program. I am more than willing to come back and recommend the LEI program to my friends because it is an unforgettable, life-changing experience that everyone deserves. Additionally, I believe that everyone can take something away from being involved with the program because I did and I plan on carrying it with me to benefit the school and to use later in the future.

As mentioned, I was going into the LEI Program with zero knowledge of hospitality other than it was very important to the economy of Hawaii. Being able to experience first-hand what it’s like being in the hospitality industry behind the scenes was the climax of the whole event. The in-depth tour of the Mauna Kea Beach Hotel was so inspiring to me. I had fully understood the meaning of teamwork when I realized that managing a hotel was not a one-man job. It was a job for hundreds of people. Although there were unfilled employee spots in certain departments, everyone involved in the system is able to pull through and create an amazing experience for tourists and I find that astonishing.

Being a part of the program, I have a better understanding of the importance of hospitality to the State of Hawaii. Now realizing what it really means to share the Aloha Spirit, I look forward to the upcoming school years that I plan to make better for everyone. I’m so happy to have learned and grown so much during the two days of the event. The Lei program taught me so much about the system of hotels and hospitality that maybe I might work in the hospitality industry. I look forward to what I could offer to Pahoa High using the information I learned during the event. I count on coming back next year to the program to learn even more.