Multi-million dollar makeover gives Waianae’s Searider Productions a new home

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Published: Aug. 8, 2021 at 5:16 PM HST
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WAIANAE (HawaiiNewsNow) - Waianae High School students now back on campus have something new to be excited about: The new multi-media facility for the award-winning Searider Productions program.

The re-imagined space sits right next to the school’s gymnasium. It’s been years in the making, and was a vision come true thanks to new funding and work by WhiteSpace architects. The $10.7 million renovation refurbished old existing buildings and merged them with a new one.

There’s new classrooms, top-notch technology, and a new courtyard for some 250 Searider Productions students enrolled in the program.

“We have spaces for all of our high school activities. We have spaces for all of our early college and in-college activities. We have spaces for our edu-prises, and we have spaces for everybody to enjoy which is what we’re really excited about,” Video Advisor and Operations Manager for the Searider Productions foundation John Allen III said.

High school and college students gain all types of skills from the basics of media and journalism – to design, 3D printing, and even silk screen shirt production.

Searider Productions is a gem of Waianae high school. They’ve won many awards both locally and nationally, and they strive in cultivating local, homegrown talent. They’re known on the national scale especially at the Student Television Network convention, a competition of the nation’s best media students.

“We try to instill in them that wherever you are and wherever life takes you, don’t forget where you came from because its important to the people that come behind you,” Allen said.

The lessons go far beyond just media skills. He wants students to take away a solid work ethic – no matter the career they choose.

“It’s about teamwork, inspiring each other. It’s about working together, putting your nose to the grindstone and figuring out the problem together,” he added.

The new upgraded space not only meets the needs of the nationally renown program – it’s also a source of inspiration for the students.

“They see that it’s not about the grades, it’s not about what am I doing today, it’s really about what am I doing for my future, what am I doing for the future of my community.”

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