Hawaii Pacific University (HPU) goes back to 1965, was a group of Hawaiian citizens applied to establish a not-for-profit college to be known as the Hawaii Pacific College. The State of Hawaii granted the charter resulting in the incorporation of the college towards the end of that year. The entity expanded almost immediately by merging with the Honolulu Christian College in 1966.
Starting as a single campus college, the school expanded over the years and today boasts three campuses. The university’s main campus, the Downtown campus, is located in downtown Honolulu. The university’s other campus, the Hawaii Loa Campus, is situated eight miles away and is built on 135 acres of land. On the windward coast of Hawaii is the college’s third campus, the Oceanic Institute.
The university is also represented on military installations on the island of Oahu and has campuses on several military bases including the historical Pearl Harbor Naval Base, the Marine Corps Base of Hawaii and the Hickam Air Force Base.
Students opting for a Bachelor of Arts degree can major in over 40 areas, including accounting, advertising and public relations, business economics, communication diplomacy and military studies, justice administration, elementary and secondary education, journalism and international relations among others. Bachelor of Science degrees can be earned in over 20 areas including biochemistry, biology, health and human sciences, marine biology, mathematics, pre-medical studies, digital media, web design, nursing, economics and chemistry.
One of the oldest schools in the university is the School of Business Administration which was established in 1972. The school has expanded over the years and today the majors offered by this school are the most popular with students.
Close in popularity to the business degrees are degrees in clinical sciences and health professions.
Graduate programs include the Master of Arts in communication, diplomacy and military studies, human resource management, business administration, elementary and secondary education and organizational change. Graduate science degrees offered by the university are the Master of Science in marine science, nursing and information systems.
Students enrolled in the graduate programs are able to pursue secondary degrees courtesy of the university’s Joint Degree arrangement. Students studying for a Masters in Business Administration (MBA) could also concurrently study for degrees in communication, global leadership and sustainable development, human resource management, organizational change and nursing.
Students enrolled in the Master of Science in Information Systems could also concurrently study for degrees in business administration, human resource management, diplomacy and military studies and organizational change among others.
Most Popular Fields of Study
The university takes several factors into consideration when reviewing prospective students. Although the applicant’s grade point average is important, the university also looks at ACT and SAT scores, involvement in extra-curricular activities, and the required personal statement.
All prospective freshmen should have completed four years of English, four years of history or other social science, two years of natural science, and three three years of mathematics. Students wishing to majors in environmental sciences, marine biology, and oceanography are required to have completed three years of high school science courses such as chemistry, biology, physics, and mathematics while maintaining a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or higher.
Students transferring from other universities and colleges are required to submit the official transcripts issued by all the institutions previously attended. The transfer student’s cumulative GPA must be 2.0 or better. Where the transfer student has 24 or more university-level credits, the university will make its decision on whether to admit or not based on the post-secondary record. If the student has less than 24 credits, the university will also look at the applicant’s high school grades.
International students are required to send their academic transcripts to the university by mail (the university does not accept faxes and email attachments). Where the transcripts are in a language other than English, the applicant is required to have the documents certified and professionally translated.
Prospective graduate students must submit official transcripts issued by all previous institutions attended. These documents must all be original and unopened, showing the signature of the institution’s registrar and the institution’s official seal. The applicant’s should also submit two letters of recommendation (ideally from former academic counselors or professors) and a 500-word essay stating why he or she wants to pursue graduate studies at HPU.
The school awards the Alumni Scholarship, which was established to honor the university’s alumni, to new undergraduate and graduate students. It is awarded to student’s who are referred to the university by the university’s alumni. Winners of this scholarship receive $1,000 in the name of the alumnus to cover tuition expenses.
Graduates of Hawaii high schools could also apply for the Scholarships for High School Seniors in Hawaii which waive tuition fees for freshmen joining the university. The university also conducts writing competitions throughout the State and both juniors and seniors in Hawaii high schools participate. Amounts awarded for these competitions vary.
The university also awards the Pacific Islands Institute and Diana W. Lockwood Memorial Scholarship in honor of Diana Lockwood who was the founder of the Pacific Islands Institute. The scholarship is awarded to both graduate and undergraduate students from the Pacific regions. In addition to demonstrating financial need, applicants for this scholarship are expected to return to their home countries after graduation (to put what they learned into practical use) and each winners receives up to $2,000.
Incoming students with exceptional athletic capabilities could also benefit from the university’s Athletic Scholarships which waive tuition fees for students with demonstrated athletic abilities. Similar to this are the Band and Orchestra Scholarships, Cheer and Dance Scholarships and International Vocal Ensemble Scholarships.
Federal Student Loans
Federal loans are also available for students. These include Graduate PLUS Loans, Parent PLUS Loans and Direct Stafford Loans. Private institutions offering student loans include Citibank, Sallie Mae and Wells Fargo. A federal loan is always preferable as its interest rates are low and a student should only consider loans from private lenders as a last resort.
Student Financial Aid Details
Athletic teams include basketball, volleyball, softball, tennis, soccer, golf and cross country. The university is a member of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and its teams, the Sea Warriors, compete in the Pacific West Conference. The Sea Warriors’ honors and awards include the the men’s basketball team’s 1993 NAIA national championship and more recently, the women’s softball team won the 2010 NCAA Division II National Championship.
The university’s cross country teams have won five consecutive Academic All-Americans as voted by the U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association. To earn this prestigious award, the team must have at least five of its members completing the race at their NCAA regional championship while the cumulative GPA of the entire team must be 3.0 or higher.
HPU is accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities of the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). Some of the university’s programs have also obtained accreditation by professional accrediting bodies. The nursing program is accredited by the National League for Nursing Accrediting Commission while the Social Work Program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
Brooke Bright graduated with her Master’s in Business Administration from the University of Phoenix. She currently resides with her family in Northern Illinois. When she is not chasing her two sons around you can find her organizing something or reading a mystery novel.