University of Hawai‘i at Hilo

The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo or UH Hilo is a public co-educational university in Hilo, Hawaiʻi, United States.[4] It is one of ten general campuses of the University of Hawaiʻi system. It was founded as Hawaiʻi Vocational College (Hawaiʻi College) in 1941. In 1970 it was reorganized by an act of the Hawaiʻi State Legislature.

The university has been accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges since 1976.[5] It offers thirty-three undergraduate and three graduate degree programs, and has about 3000 students; most are residents of Hawaiʻi, but there are many international students too.

University of Hawaii at Hilo
UH Hilo Logo
MottoPulelo haʻaheo ke ahi a nā lehua aʻo Hilo
Motto in English
The flame of Hilo's lehua blossoms leaps triumphantly with pride
TypePublic university
Established1941 (as Hawaiʻi College)
1947 (as UH Hilo)[1]
1970 (as a four-year institution)
Endowment$180 million[2]
ChancellorMarcia Sakai (interim)
PresidentDavid Lassner
Academic staff
Students3,974 (Fall 2009)
Location, ,

19°41′59″N 155°04′54″W / 19.6996°N 155.0816°WCoordinates: 19°41′59″N 155°04′54″W / 19.6996°N 155.0816°W
Campus755 acres (3.1 km2)
ColorsRed and Black[3]
AthleticsNCAA Division IIPacWest
AffiliationsUH System
University of Hawaii at Hilo


University rankings
Times/WSJ[6] 601-800
U.S. News & World Report[7] 96-127
Master's University class
Washington Monthly[8] 166

The university specializes in marine science, volcanology, astronomy, and Hawaiian studies. The Masters of Arts program in Hawaiian Language and Literature was the first in the United States to focus on an indigenous language.[9]



The University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo offers BA, BBA, BS, and BSN degrees in addition to certificates. Students can also choose minors in some programs.


Vulcans banner

Until 1994 UH Hilo belonged to the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics or NAIA. Since 1992, it has been a member of the NCAA Division II, Pacific West Conference. It fields teams in baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball. The sports teams nickname is the Vulcans.[10]


Shared with UH West Oʻahu 1976–1997.

  • Bonnie D. Irwin (2019-present)
  • Marcia Sakai (Interim, 2017-2019)
  • Donald O. Straney (2010–2017)
  • Rose Tseng (1998–2010)
  • Kenneth Perrin (1993–1997)
  • Edward J. Kormondy (1986–1993)
  • Edwin Mookini (1975–1978)
  • Paul Miwa (1970–?)

Argument for separation

There has been a growing movement throughout the last decade to separate the Hilo campus from the University of Hawaiʻi system, creating a "Hawaiʻi State University". Supporters of the separation argue that the growing Hilo campus is "shortchanged" by its sister campus in Mānoa and that being independent of the system would allow the college to grow faster, better serve the community, and draw in more money from independent sources. Opponents argue that the state is too small for competing university systems and that financial divisions between Mānoa and Hilo are fair, given that Mānoa places emphasis on research and Hilo places emphasis on teaching. There are also concerns that this movement will hurt relationships between the Hilo campus and the rest of the University of Hawaiʻi system.

A bill was introduced in the 2005 session of the House of Representatives of the Hawaiʻi State Legislature to draft legislation to spin off the Hilo campus as the independent Hawaiʻi State University. The bill was approved by the House Higher Education Committee but no hearing on the bill was planned by the House Finance Committee, effectively killing it. [11]

Points of interest at UH Hilo

University Park

Main Campus

  • University Classroom Building (UCB)
  • Marine Science Building (MSB)
  • Sciences & Technology Building (STB)
  • Edith Kanakaʻole Hall (EKH)
  • Wentworth Hall
  • Campus Center
  • Student Life Center & Pool
  • Edwin H. Mookini Library & Media Center
  • UH Hilo Student Services Building
  • UH Hilo New Gymnasium
  • UH Hilo Performing Arts Center[12]

See also



  • The University of Hawaiʻi-Hilo – A College in the Making (2001) ISBN 0-8248-2495-4.
  1. ^ "University of Hawaii at Hilo campus overview - University of Hawaii System".
  2. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2016-03-05. Retrieved 2015-04-16.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "UH Hilo Vulcan Athletics Quick Facts page". Archived from the original on 2012-03-07. Retrieved 2015-04-16.
  4. ^ "Hilo CDP, Hawaii Archived 2011-11-24 at the Wayback Machine." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on May 21, 2009.
  5. ^ Statement of Accreditation Status: University of Hawaii at Hilo. WASC Senior College and University Commission. Accessed April 2015.
  6. ^ "U.S. College Rankings 2020". Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education. Retrieved September 26, 2019.
  7. ^ "Best Colleges 2020: Regional Universities Rankings". U.S. News & World Report. Retrieved September 8, 2019.
  8. ^ "2019 Rankings -- Masters Universities". Washington Monthly. Retrieved September 8, 2019.
  9. ^ "KHUOK Home - Ka Haka ʻUla o Keʻelikōlani". Kualono.
  10. ^ "The University of Hawaii at Hilo". Archived from the original on 2006-09-01. Retrieved 2006-08-14.
  11. ^ "Clamor increases to spin off UH-Hilo". The Honolulu Advertiser.
  12. ^ "UH Hilo Main Campus map" (PDF). Retrieved 8 January 2019.

External links

Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy

The Daniel K. Inouye College of Pharmacy is one of six colleges within the public University of Hawai'i at Hilo (UH Hilo). The school awards a four-year Doctor of Pharmacy degree (Pharm.D.) and is by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education.

The College of Pharmacy was founded in 2007 and graduated its inaugural class in 2011. It is the only pharmacy school in the state of Hawai'i. In 2012, one year after the first class graduated, U.S. News & World Report ranked the UH Hilo College of Pharmacy 7th of nearly 200 pharmacy schools in the United States.

Hawaii–Hilo Vulcans

The Hawaii–Hilo Vulcans are the athletic sports teams for the University of Hawaii at Hilo, located in Hilo, Hawaii, in NCAA Division II intercollegiate sports. The Vulcans compete as members of the Pacific West Conference, in 12 varsity sports.

Hawaii–Hilo Vulcans women's volleyball

The Hawaii–Hilo Vulcans women's volleyball team is the intercollegiate women's volleyball team of the University of Hawaii at Hilo. One of the original "traditionals" in the world of small schools volleyball, the Vulcans started out as National Runners Up right out of the gates in 1978. The 1978 AIAW Div.II team was led by Cheryl Ching, Kawehi Ka'a'a, Vetoann Baker and Lyndell Lindsey. Coach Sharon Peterson (a inaugural 1988 NAIA Hall of Fame honoree) was in fact coach back then, but she had been preceded by Coach Mike Wilton for partial foundations in some of 1977. In June of 2018, Manu-Olevao's became the able majority, two, assistants.In the first week of December, in 1979 (Orlando, FL), UHH won Hawai'i its first ever National Championship of volleyball. Later that evening, Hawaii Rainbow Wahine volleyball would also win a national title for large national colleges (at Central Standard Time). All-American Cheryl Ching would go on to win the Honda-Broderick Cup in 1980, moreover, the first in the 50th State to do so. The program as a matter of circumstance would go from AIAW Division II to NAIA powers in 1981. Hilo is still the only multi-Champion, multi-Divisional program to win simultaneous collegiate championships in a single year (1981).


Hoʻolulu (1794–1844) was a member of the nobility during the formation of the Kingdom of Hawaii. He was a trusted advisor to King Kamehameha I, also known as "Kamehameha the Great", and was one of the select few to know his secret resting place. His descendants continue the tradition of guarding royal burials. A major cultural site in Hilo, Hawaii is named after him.

Kai Kahele

Kaiali‘i Kahele (born March 28, 1974) is an American politician and son of Gil Kahele. He is a member of the Hawaii Senate from the 1st district, serving since 2016. Kahele has sponsored 203 bills. He is a member of the Democratic Party.He is currently running for Hawaii's 2nd congressional district in 2020 against incumbent Democratic U.S. Representative and 2020 presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard.

List of colleges and universities in Hawaii

This is a list of colleges and universities in Hawaii. This list also includes other accredited educational institutions providing higher education, meaning tertiary, quaternary, and, in some cases, post-secondary education.

Mike Victorino

Michael Paul Victorino (born August 24, 1952) is an American politician serving as the eighth Mayor of the County of Maui since 2019.In November 2017, he announced intentions to run for county council mayor, ultimately defeating Council Member Cochran. Victorino also previously served as Wailuku's council member from 2006 to 2017. He and his wife Joycelyn have two children, including retired Major League Baseball player, Shane Victorino.

R. Keao NeSmith

R. Keao NeSmith is a Native Hawaiian linguist, educator, and translator. He has taught at various universities, such as the University of Hawai‘i at Hilo, l'Université de la Polynésie française in ‘Outumaoro, Tahiti, the University of Waikato in Hamilton, New Zealand, and the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa in Honolulu, Hawai‘i. He has taught Hawaiian language, Hawaiian Studies, subjects on endangered language revitalization, and Tahitian language.His work on "Neo Hawaiian" as a separate variety of Hawaiian has informed debate in Hawaiian language studies, as well as broader issues in language revitalization.He has translated a number of books into Hawaiian, including The Hobbit, The Little Prince, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, and the Harry Potter series. He is currently working on a Hawaiian translation of The Chronicles of Narnia.



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