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University of Hawaii at Hilo

Hilo, HI


About This Campus

The University of Hawai'i at Hilo (UH Hilo) is located on the Big Island of Hawai'i, about 200 air miles from Honolulu. A seacoast city of 45,000 residents, Hilo spreads beneath Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa volcanoes and is surrounded by lush agricultural fields and expansive forest reserves. Located in a tropical rain forest region, Hilo's climate demonstrates variety - both ample sun and abundant rain. The Big Island's diverse geography provides a wide range of outdoor activities, such as hiking, surfing & diving. Special features include nearby Kilauea Volcano, Mauna Kea's observatories, and access to unique marine life. UH Hilo offers 34 baccalaureate programs in 5 colleges: Agriculture, Arts & Science, Business & Economics, Continuing Education and Hawaiian Language. The student population of 4,100 is predominantly local and of Asian-Pacific descent - making UH Hilo one of the nation's most diverse campuses. The vision of the University is grounded in Hawaiian cultural values.

Chance of Placement

Host Payment (A)
Home Payment (B)
Most Competitive

Fast Facts

Location | Hilo
Population | 43,263
Enrollment | 3,924
Language | English
Calendar | Semester
Canada | Both (A/B)
Term Dates
Fall | 08/22-12/16
Spring | 01/09-5/12

Campus Diversity

White | 27%
Black | 1%
Hispanic/Latino | 2%
Asian | 24%
Native/1st Nation | 1%
Hawaiian/P.I. | 31%
Two or more | 14%
Other | 0%


-- Campus Catalog --

Registration Priority
  • After campus students
Closed Programs
Nursing, Education, Biomedical Research

Psychology, Kinesiology/Exercise Science, Communications

Notable Academic Programs

  • Hawaiian - The program provides a unique educational opportunity for students interested in culture, economics, politics, sociology, linguistics, music, anthropology, biology, geography, history, and dance.
  • Marine Sciences - https://hilo.hawaii.edu/catalog/marine-science
  • Geology - Hilo’s unique natural setting on the slope of an active volcano makes it an ideal place to experience firsthand the more dynamic aspects of geology.
  • Astronomy - The UH Hilo academic astronomy program leverages the astronomy infrastructure of Mauna Kea and the University Park of Science and Technology to provide students with knowledge of astronomy and astrophysics, and training in modern methods of observational astronomy. The B.S. degree program provides the skills necessary for students seeking careers in astronomy, as professional research astronomers, observatory technical staff members, or work in related fields that include planetary geosciences, teaching, and outreach.
  • Business - Internships with local businesses and organizations are available to qualified students.

Unique Academic Programs

  • Hawaiian Studies - The program provides a unique educational opportunity for students interested in culture, economics, politics, sociology, linguistics, music, anthropology, biology, geography, history, and dance.
  • Japanese Studies - The Japanese Studies program offers a broad range of coursework and research opportunities for students that is designed to develop an understanding of Japan in all of its dimensions: culture, society, language, art, political science, history, music, and others.
  • Performance - The Performing Arts Department offers a degree program comprised of three specialty concentrations: Dance, Drama Performance, and Music. The Dance concentration offers courses in ballet, modern and jazz dance, choreography, and dance in education. The Drama Performance concentration offers courses in acting, directing, costuming, stage makeup, stagecraft, musical theatre, and drama education. The Music concentration offers courses in the areas of musicology (history and literature), music theory and composition, applied music instruction (vocal and instrumental), and performing ensembles open to all qualified students, regardless of major.
  • Pacific Island Studies - Students will have an opportunity to deepen their knowledge of Pacific Island environments, cultures, political-economy and history.

Undergraduate Majors Open to NSE Students

Agriculture: Agricultural Sciences, Animal Sciences, Aquaculture, Horticulture, Plant Science

Anthropology: Anthropology

Area Studies: Hawaiian Studies, Japanese Studies

Art/Design/Fine Art: Art

Athletics: Exercise Science

Biological Sciences: Biology/Life Science, Evolutionary Biology, Molecular Biology

Business: Accounting, Business, Business Administration

Chemistry: Chemistry

Communications: Communication

Criminal Justice: Administration of Justice

Earth Sciences: Astronomy, Geology

Economics: Economics

English: English, Linguistics

Environmental Studies: Environmental Sciences, Environmental Studies

Foreign Language: Hawaiian, Japanese, Spanish

General Studies: Arts and Science, Interdisciplinary Studies, Liberal Studies, Natural Sciences

Geography and Urban Studies: Geography

Geology: Geology

Health and Safety Sciences: Kinesiology

History: History

Information Studies: Computer Science

Marine Sciences: Marine Sciences

Mathematics: Mathematics

Performing Arts: Music

Philosophy/Religious Studies: Philosophy, Religious Studies

Physics: Physics

Political Science: Political Science

Psychology: Psychology

Sociology/Social Work: Sociology, Women and Gender Studies

Theater: Performance and Directing


Quick Links GPA and Other Academic Requirements
  • No students accepted from NSE members within my own state
  • 2.50 GPA
  • None.
Exchange Preferences
  • Full-year exchange Accepted
  • Single term exchange Accepted
Mid-Year Exchange (Exchange that begins with the Spring/Winter Term)
  • Available
Summer Exchange
  • Not available
International Students (Visa Students)
  • Will accept on Plan A/B

Tuition / Fees

-- Campus Budget --
  • Fees are subject to change without notice.
  • Two semesters = one academic year
  • Three quarters = one academic year
Tuition and Fees Per Semester - Host Payment (Plan A) Students
  • Figures are current as of 06/20/17.
  • Estimated cost: $3824.
  • Expect 5-15% increase for the subsequent academic year.
  • Figures are based on 15 hours. Actual costs may be greater or less depending upon your actual enrollment.
  • Figures do not include costs you will incur for course specific enrollment (e.g., laboratory courses, student teaching, studio art)
  • See below for credit hour restrictions and/or miscellaneous fees applicable to Host Payment (Plan A) students.
Tuition and Fees - Home Payment (Plan B) Students
  • No tuition/fees are paid to the host campus.
  • Figures do not include costs you will incur for course specific enrollment (e.g., laboratory courses, student teaching, studio art)
  • See below for credit hour restrictions and/or miscellaneous fees applicable to Home Payment (Plan B) students.
Maximum Credit Hours Per Semester
  • Host Payment (Plan A): 18 ($300 per additional hour)
  • Home Payment (Plan B): 18 ($300 per additional hour)
Miscellaneous Fees - Per Semester
Figures are current as of 06/20/17.

Purpose Amount Period Plan Status
Application Fee $50 Year Plan A & B Mandatory
NSE Program Fee $65 Year Plan A & B Mandatory
Housing Deposit $200 Year Plan A & B Mandatory
ID Card $10 Year Plan A & B Mandatory
Parking Fee $25 Year Plan A & B Optional
Orientation Fee $50 Semester Plan A & B Optional

Exchange with Canada - Health Insurance
Students must purchase campus health insurance at $1,100 per semester.

Financial Aid

Host Payment (Plan A)
For Plan A U.S. students, aid is awarded by and disbursed from your host campus. Students apply for federally funded financial aid by using the FAFSA code of their host campus. Host campuses award aid to eligible incoming Plan A students on a first-come, first-served basis as long as funds are available. Ask your home campus NSE coordinator if your campus awards aid to their own outgoing students. If so, do not apply for aid from your host campus.

For eligible Plan A applicants U.S. federal financial aid may be available in the following programs:

  • Pell
  • CWS
  • Perkins
  • SEOG
  • DL
  • Plus
Use FAFSA CODE: 001611

Home Payment (Plan B)
For eligible Plan B students, aid is awarded by and disbursed from your home campus.

Regardless of Payment Plan, students exchanging to or from Canada, apply for financial aid at their home campus.

Room / Meals

Figures are current as of 06/20/17

On-Campus Housing Per Semester
  • 16% living on campus
  • Suite: $6085 (includes meals)
  • Per semester unless otherwise noted
  • On campus living encouraged
Off-Campus Housing
  • Appoximate monthly cost: $600
  • Proximity to campus: less than 1 mile
  • Local Public Transportation Available to Campus
Notes About Housing
Hale 'Alahonua, or newer residence hall is the most common assignment. It is suite style living and is approximately $5876 for a single room and a meal plan. More affordable options, as low as $4124 for a shared room and meal plan, are possible, but less likely.

Meal Plans Per Semester

  • Meal purchase is required for on campus living.
  • $2352.00 per semester for 7 meals per week.
  • $2553.00 per semester for 10 meals per week.
  • $2726.00 per semester for 14 meals per week.
Notes About Meal Plans
All Students assigned to Hale Kanilehua, Hale Kauanoe, Hale `Alahonua, and Hale Kehau are required to be on a Meal Plan. Plan A: 7 All-You-Care-to-Eat Meals/Week + 500 Flex Points $2,352.00/semester Plan B: 10 All-You-Care-to-Eat Meals/Week + 450 Flex Points $2,553.00/semester Plan C: 14 All-You-Care-to-Eat Meals/Week +325 Flex Points $2,726.00/semester * The information, terms and conditions in the Housing brochure are part of the application contract for on-campus student housing at the University of Hawai`i at Hilo for the academic year. All cost figures and dates listed are subject to change with 30 day’s notice.

All data in this document is the responsibility of the campus and has been provided by the campus NSE coordinator.
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