Author: Gavin Arucan

Lisa Kobuke

Professor Lisa Kobuke has been teaching Japanese for 16 years at KCC, although she began teaching at UH Mānoa. Professor Kobuke first got into teaching back when she attended UH Mānoa and was required to teach Japanese in order to earn a scholarship. Her mother, who came from Japan, taught Japanese as well, so that interested Professor Kobuke as well. She loved getting her first class, but she also remembers scripting her entire lectures the night before during her early semesters of teaching.

“I just love Japanese literature and I see so much that I want to share about Japanese culture. Language is just one avenue in which I can share that,” said Professor Kobuke. “It’s more of a package. You cannot separate language, culture, and history. Everything is together. It’s my mission to share that.”

Some of her favorite Japanese literature includes “The Tale of Heike” and “Hōjōki.”

Professor Kobuke loves the KCC community. “I feel a deeper connection with the students here,” said Professor Kobuke. “I love getting to know the students, getting to joke around in class, or finding out how you’re going to use the language you’re learning.”

Professor Kobuke currently resides in Kāneʻohe because she “has to see the Koʻolaus.” In her free time she likes to read or appreciate art in museums.

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Manny Batinga

Manny Batinga is in his second semester of college. At the age of 19, Manny is taking classes at two UH community colleges. While he is majoring in Fire at HCC, he is taking his Japanese language requirement at KCC with Kobuke sensei.

Manny wants to major in Fire because he “wants to become a firefighter and help other people.”

Manny graduated from President William McKinley High School in 2016 where he earned a scholarship from the McKinley Foundation that aided him in attending college. In his free time, Manny enjoys weightlifting and working on his car, a 1986 Toyota Corolla.

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  • Dennis HoDennis Ho
    Dennis Ho is a nursing major taking prerequisites at the moment. He’s been working on pharmacology assignments, which he says it’s “really hard.” Ho got inspired to pursue a second career in nursing after he had a family member with medical needs, and so far he really enjoys his course. Aside from studying, Ho has a photography company that provides services for school events, such as proms, graduation parties and yearbooks. The Nuʻuanu resident likes to go swimming, running and playing volleyball in his free time.

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