By Kerry Miller Share Del.icio.us
Tita Ahuna stepped down as “queen” of HPU volleyball in June, leaving an impressive 10-year legacy, as both coach and senior woman administrator, behind her. Now the lady with two NCAA Division II championships and six Pacific West Conference titles under her belt has moved on to forming a program to promote youth sports, teaching and dabbling in music.
Ahuna has a goal of promoting youth sports in Hawaii, and to achieve this goal she is working on forming P.L.A.Y., Positive Learning Activities for Youth. Through P.L.A.Y., Ahuna hopes to assist “student athletes who are serious about going to college, but need help with the recruiting process.” Athletes would receive help with writing letters to coaches, creating their player profile, making highlight videos of themselves and attending seminars on NCAA compliance.
“I’m starting it up right now. Hopefully by December I will have a website up,” explains the 39-year-old, who added that she will assist athletes in all sports, but will start out with volleyball athletes who’d like to play at the collegiate level.
“My big goal is to promote youth sports on the Island. I want to be a resource to those student athletes who want to pursue the next step after high school,” she says.
“I always wanted to do it but never had the time. I had double duties (at HPU as coach and administrator). It was difficult. Now I have the time,” adds the MidWeek cover girl from September 1999.
While she was at HPU, Ahuna added student to her list of occupations and graduated with her master’s degree in education. “Right now I’m teaching grades K-8,” she says.
Away from the classroom, the Papakolea resident can be found rockin’out on her bass guitar with her band, Kaikea. She’s loved music from a young age, especially when her grandmother bought her an ukulele. Ahuna got together with Kaikea when her friend said if she bought a bass, she would teach her how to play it.
“I’m not getting a gig at the Waikiki Shell anytime,” she laughs. “(But) I love doing it because it’s something different from volleyball. We play contemporary Hawaiian, reggae, a little bit of everything. We do private parties.”
Though forming P.L.A.Y., teaching and her band take up most of her days now, Ahuna also enjoys spending time with family and friends.
Volleyball, however, will always be a part of her. In fact, she’s excited to watch UH volleyball matches. And who knows? Maybe there will be another coaching opportunity in her future.
“I miss coaching,” Ahuna reveals. “But I can always get back into it.”
- Kerry Miller
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