Scholarship Spotlight: Jacelyn Yun

Scholarship Spotlight: Jacelyn Yun

Every year, Maui Hotel & Lodging Association selects scholarship recipients from three different programs that our memberships provide to Maui based students. This year, over thirty-five outstanding individuals were given a scholarship amount, with one overall spotlight awardee finalist, Jacelyn Yun.

Jacelyn Yun, daughter of a Fairmont Kea Lani employee and a Four Seasons Resort employee, is a 2024 graduate of Maui High School. Her high school career boasted an accumulative 4.0 GPA, Honors, AP classes and National Honor Society recognition. However, her extracurricular activities are equally impressive, with leadership positions like Maui High Student Government Secretary, Maui High Key Club Webmaster, Maui High Key Club Social Planner, and Center for Tomorrow’s Leader Winner, not to mention band, Japanese performance and golf.

Jacelyn was introduced to musical expression at an early age. Her cousin invited her to learn Taiko drumming of which she credits her ability to find calm disposition and a healthy release from. She began band in middle school and later joined Maui High Marching and Symphonic Band becoming the band’s Flute Section Leader.

Introduced to golf by her father at seven years old, hitting balls at the Dunes driving range led to working with the Maui Junior Golf Association, Lahaina Junior Golf Association, Hawaii State Junior Golf Association, First Tee Assistant Coach, Maui High Girls Golf Captain, volunteering at the Sentry Tournament of Champions and title awards like MIL Golf Maui News All-Stars and MJGA Match Play Championship Winner!

It was Jacelyn’s experience in junior golf camps that made her aware of how many students struggled to afford a decent set of golf clubs and therefore, struggled to be involved in the sport. When the Maui wildfires hit, she initiated a campaign to donate golf equipment to affected families and first responders, understanding the need to give hope, a healthy distraction and fun back into the lives of Maui youth. It was this campaign drive that opened Jacelyn’s eyes to the need for effective advertising and shaped her decision to pursue a Marketing degree at Oregon State University. She currently plans to return to Hawaii, hoping to market the hotels and visitor industry she holds pride for.

When asked if there was something she wished the world understood about her generation, she explained how rare the struggles for her class of 2024 truly are; “We started high school on a screen which made so many lose interest and ability to succeed, from the start. Then, when finally, being able to meet in-person in sophomore year, the separation rules and masking made it hard to make friends.”

Jacelyn relays how when normalcy finally started to resume, that is when the devastating fires happened – one day after a ‘normal’ school year started. She opened up on how the effects of the fire really tore apart high schoolers and all students from all over the island, causing a depression, sudden stress from changes and rifts in whatever progress had been made up until then. Maui High was also the school to receive the most Lahainaluna-displaced-students initially, and Jacelyn was able to connect to one who joined band with her. However, as compassionate and stable that her class tried to be, Jacelyn’s testimony shows how much harder this past year was to overcome adversities. Jacelyn Yun’s statement and all the application statements of our MHLA scholarship submissions have proven that Maui produces wonderful young people, respectful and caring, extremely talented, ambitious, positively driven with fierce hearts for their community.

Mahalo to all who helped MHLA raise the funding to support such young leaders like these and more to come from Maui County. Registration for the 2024 Excellence in Education Golf Tournament, that funds these scholarships, opens on June 18 to members.

Photos Complimentary from Jacelyn Yun

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