CIM scholarship applications open for Maui’s future builders and designers : Maui Now


Construction workers. PC: Construction Industry of Maui

The Construction Industry of Maui (CIM) today announced it is accepting applications from graduating Maui’s high school students, for its annual Bob Poulson CIM Scholarships. Selected students will receive scholarship money to pursue a degree in architecture, engineering, construction, landscaping or other applicable programs – then bring the knowledge and skills they’ve acquired back to Maui to serve their communities. 

To qualify, scholarship applications must reside and be a graduate from a high school in Maui County. Candidates must already be enrolled and entering a two- or four-year degree in an applicable construction or design field. Applicants are asked to submit a compelling essay limited to 1,500 words that depicts their planned course of study, career ambitions and why they should be awarded this opportunity. Transcripts, referral letters, achievements and college acceptance letters may also be included in the application.

Visit for the scholarship application. The deadline for the essay and application is May 1, 2024.


The two scholarship awardees will be selected by the CIM Advisory Board and notified prior to the scholarship banquet, tentatively scheduled for late May. To date, the CIM has awarded $277,500 in scholarships benefiting 12 Maui students who have or plan to return to the island.

Bob Poulson was a steward in the Maui community and a construction industry veteran. One of the original leaders of the Construction Industry of Maui organization, he also co-founded Arita Poulson General Contracting in 1986. He was involved with the building and remodeling of more than a thousand projects statewide including schools, hotels, healthcare facilities, churches, community centers and other significant retail and commercial projects on Maui. Poulson is remembered as a leader who enjoyed working alongside his employees and teaching young people from diverse backgrounds about the construction industry.

Last Year’s Scholarship Recipients:

2023 CIM Scholarship recipeints. (L-R) Yuna Lee & Jaysen Akahi-Vida. PC: Construction Industry of Maui

Jaysen Akahi-Vida, a Lahainaluna High School graduate of 2023, is pursuing a degree in architectural and civil engineering from Whitworth University in Spokane, Washington. As an athlete, Jaysen has always taken pride in his ability to challenge himself both physically and academically. From humble beginnings, he’s a fourth-generation pig farmer who hopes his work ethic will result in him “becoming an owner one day of a world-class, Maui-based business having the best well-rounded crew when it comes to building, construction, and planning.”


Yuna Lee was born with a passion for building. In her formative years, she would often be found “inventing” products and buildings with Legos or whatever other materials she may have had lying around. A high school graduate in 2023, she now attends Gonzaga University and majors in engineering, with a minor in construction management and business. Her intent is to return to Maui, “bringing her degree back to the islands to establish a business that directly constructs affordable, sustainable homes for our communities.” She’s a member of the GSA club, the Student Senate, Rotary Interact Club, and the National Honor Society with a personal goal of improving the community. Lee lost her family home in the Lahaina fires and is grateful for this scholarship that’s allowing her to still attend college. Although her family was safe, the fires placed financial strain on the family.

“This scholarship has given me the opportunity to go on to receive a higher degree so that I could gather the tools necessary to make real change,” said Lee. “It has given me beyond just an opportunity but has shaped the path of my entire future.”

“With all that has happened in the past eight months post fires, it has become abundantly clear that everything I have been working toward is necessary, and has fueled the motivation that burns inside of me that is as eager as ever to help my Lahaina community,” Lee said.


“The opportunity to award these scholarships to outstanding students from Maui fills us with great enthusiasm,” said Anthony Nelson, CIM Scholarship Committee Chair and President of Rethink Restoration. “This tradition not only honors their achievements but also perpetuates Bob Poulson’s legacy where these scholars will eventually come back to contribute to their island community. By applying their acquired knowledge, they will play a pivotal role in furthering Maui’s building industry and ensuring its prosperity.”

“We extend our heartfelt gratitude to the generous supporters whose contributions make these scholarships a reality as they provide local youth with the opportunity to pursue their dreams of mastering trades, entering professional fields, and becoming future innovators in the construction industry. In doing so, they contribute to the enrichment of our Maui communities,” said Nelson.

Apply for scholarships online at, or mail a hard copy to:

  • The Construction Industry of Maui Advisory Board
  • PO Box 1628
  • Kahului, HI 96733


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