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Acer Pahukoa '17

  • Wailuku, HI
  • Acer's favorite places include Tandem Bagels, Goodbye Blue Monday, Gould Library and Laird Stadium.
  • Football
    Acer participates in Varsity Football.
  • Watson Hall
    Acer lives in Watson Hall.
  • Q: Any advice for high school students on their college search?
    A: Go somewhere different, somewhere that isn't like your hometown. You have four years to try something else. If you don't like it, home is always home. You can always go back there. But you don't have to rush back. I was told that, and it became very important for me.
  • Q: What would surprise your high school friends about you now?
    A: If they heard the way that I speak, I would get ridiculed. I don't speak like this at home. In fact, it's really different. There's a different language in Hawaii. We use a lot of slang, Hawaiian words mixed with English and a lot of different cultural influences -- Filipino, Japanese, Chinese -- to form a common language. That's what you grow up with, so that's how you talk with everyone else.
  • Q: Carleton calls itself a liberal arts college. What exactly does that mean?
    A: I was able to find what I'm really interested in while here. I think I'll be a psychology major. I'd like to be a child psychologist. I like working with kids. When I first came here, I thought I'd be an economics major, that I'd go into business. But being able to take a multitude of classes helped me decide what path I really wanted. I had Intro to Psychology my freshman year, and it just caught me. How people work, how our brains work -- it got me hooked.
  • Q: What other schools did you seriously consider?
    A: University of Puget Sound. Macalester.
  • Q: What do you like about playing football at Carleton?
    A: Everything happens naturally here. The coaches make our schedules according to classes, so class always comes first. In season, we're really busy, but I always find time for homework. We get everything that we need. As for the team, the guys are really close. There's a lot of camaraderie. We're here four weeks before everyone else comes to campus, so we get to know each other well. And I think we play in the toughest conference in Division III, that's just my opinion, so you really get to test yourself physically against some great competition.
  • Q: Why did you choose Carleton?
    A: My high school counselors required us to attend five presentations for different colleges, and my school brought in some reps, mostly along the west coast. But some Midwest and east coast schools, too. My plan was always to get as far away from Hawaii as possible, just to experience something else. I met Carleton's head of financial aid at a presentation. No one else attended, so we just sat and talked for about an hour. And I loved what he told me about the opportunity I would get as a student athlete, especially at an institution that really stressed academics.
  • Q: How would you describe the students at Carleton?
    A: They're really friendly. I can give you a specific example: I lost one of my bags once. It had my wallet and everything in it. I remembered where I lost it and went back to get it, but it wasn't there. I figured, 'Oh, it's stolen. It's not there.' I went to Sayles later and it was in my mailbox. Just there. I can't say enough about that, the friendliness that people show here. I can leave my bags in the library, and go work out or something, come back a few hours later, and no one will even touch it. I think people here are just really close and really respect each other.
  • Q: Did you visit Carleton before applying?
    A: I visited before I made a decision. I sat in a class -- I remember it was a political science class -- and all the students were engaged with the professor, just interacting so naturally. I really liked it. It was instant. I was also surprised by how friendly everyone was. Back home (in Hawaii), there can be a lot of skepticism about the mainland, as we call it. People tend to think it's all hard nosed individuals and everyone keeps to themselves, everyone just wants to get ahead. That's not the case here.
  • Q: How do you balance athletics and academics at Carleton?
    A: It really clicked for me the summer before my senior year. People told me that I had the brains to go somewhere good for school and still play football. So I decided to push myself as hard as I could. I really wanted to play football in college, but I wanted an education first. The priority here is education, and I had plenty of my high school coaches tell me that even though I love football, I should be at a place that prioritizes academics above anything else. Carleton does that. All of the coaches here let me know how big of a priority education is here.
Acer Pahukoa '17

Acer Pahukoa '17

Acer’s Places

  • Watson Hall

    Acer lives in Watson Hall

    Watson Hall is a student residence hall located on the southeast corner of campus. At seven floors high, it is the tallest building on campus. In the back of Watson Hall is the serene Garden of Quiet Listening, voted one of the best Japanese gardens in the country.

    44.459400177002 -93.1502990722656

  • Acer likes Tandem Bagels

    Mere blocks from campus, Tandem Bagels is one of Northfield's Division Street eateries. Their offerings include made-from-scratch bagels and baked goods, sandwiches, salads, and soups. Open for breakfast and lunch.

    44.4566716356541 -93.1595041748369

  • Goodbye Blue Monday

    Acer likes Goodbye Blue Monday

    Goodbye Blue Monday is a coffee shop on Division Street in downtown Northfield. It's a great place to study because there's free wireless and coffee close at hand. There's also funky art on the walls and hot cider served in the winter.

    44.4567156693198 -93.1597080230495

  • Gould Library

    Acer likes Gould Library

    The library (the Libe) is a great place to study, use a computer lab, or stretch out on one of the comfy couches. Oh, and you can also check out one of 500,000 books, 1,458 print journals, 13,045 electronic journals, or 400,000 U.S. government publications. Plus, our librarians are super heroes.

    44.462100982666 -93.1544036865234

  • Laird Stadium

    Acer likes Laird Stadium

    Laird Stadium seats 7,500 for football and outdoor track and field meets, and houses handball/squash courts, a batting cage and a weight room. For football, Laird Stadium features one of the finest natural playing surfaces in the region. The stadium is one of the largest in Division III and the biggest west of the Mississippi. Circling the football field in front of the stadium is an eight-lane, 400-meter all-weather track and field facility, complete with steeplechase water jump.

    44.461799621582 -93.1583023071289