December 05, 2016

Daniel K. Inouye Institute Announces Two Inouye Fellowship Awardee


The Daniel K. Inouye Institute (DKII) Fund, a program of the Hawaii Community Foundation, is pleased to announce that Angelina Mendes and Elsei Tellei have been selected to receive the Inouye Fellowship for the fall of 2016. To continue Senator Inouye’s legacy of civic engagement and leadership through education, public service and cultural exchange, this fellowship is awarded to a Hawaii resident(s) who is a student or recent graduate of an academic program related to public service and/or international relations.

Both Mendes and Tellei exemplify the leadership values and community involvement of Senator Inouye and were both selected to receive full grants for the fall 2016 fellowship.

“We were very impressed by both Angelina and Elsei’s passion and commitment to international studies and relations,” said Selection Committee Member Pat Loui. “It was difficult for the selection committee to choose between these two qualified individuals, so the committee decided that both should be recognized for this well-deserved honor.”

Mendes, a recent graduate of the University of Leeds, earned a Master of Science degree in sustainability and international development studies, and is looking to pursue a doctorate degree in sustainable development and conflict resolution focusing on the Asia-Pacific region.

Tellei is a recent graduate of the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa majoring in political science. She plans to earn her masters and doctorate degree in hopes of making a positive impact on her home country of Palau.  

Mendes and Tellei will participate in the prestigious Regional Security Studies Intern Program (RSSIP) at the Daniel K. Inouye Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies, located at Fort DeRussy. The Asia Pacific Center is a U.S. Department of Defense's executive education asset which addresses regional and global security issues, and encourages diplomatic solutions. RSSIP provides college students and recent graduates with an opportunity to learn about the pressing security issues in the region - national, economic, environmental - through interactions with professors and young leaders representing the diverse nations of the Asia Pacific region. 

“Senator Inouye was a big proponent of providing Hawaii students with opportunities to have experiences on the broader world stage, and encouraging them to enter careers in government and diplomatic service. This fellowship provides them with an incredible opportunity to have the best of both worlds – living in Hawaii while gaining valuable experiences in international relations,” stated Jennifer Sabas, Director of the DKII.

The DKII established an endowment to benefit the Pacific International Center for High Technology Research to provide an annual stipend to a student that exemplifies the legacy of Daniel K. Inouye. The Daniel K. Inouye Institute was established in 2013 to preserve Inouye's papers and tell his life story; support STEM education, civics learning and educational-cultural exchanges; and establish a repository of the Asian American/Pacific experience. For further information, visit

With 100 years of community service, the Hawai‘i Community Foundation (HCF) is the leading philanthropic institution in the state. HCF is a steward of more than 700 funds, including more than 200 scholarship funds, created by donors who desire to transform lives and improve communities. In 2015, HCF distributed nearly $45 million in grants and contracts statewide, including $4.5 million in scholarships. HCF also serves as a resource on community issues and trends in the nonprofit sector. For more information, visit


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