Rallies in opposition of TMT construction atop Mauna Kea are taking place across the country.

Despite the growing movement, officials say they are sticking to their plan to build on Mauna Kea.

Hawaii spokesperson Scott Ishikawa says they feel like they've been a part of the larger community for the last decade.

Ishikawa reminds people that TMT would created hundreds of jobs for the island and would allow students interested in the science field to have more opportunities.

TMT says they have donated $5 million to fund scholarships for STEM education.

"We have mixed feelings on what happened this week but are just happy and relieved that everyone has remained safe. We actually comment those who oppose us on how they've handled themselves," Ishikawa said.

According to TMT, they realize their telescope has become a symbol of larger issues but it hopes to find a way to move forward