Hawaii Pacific University Online

Hawaii Pacific University was chartered in 1965 to meet the need for a private liberal arts institution in Honolulu. A new charter was granted in 1966 after Hawaii Pacific merged with Honolulu Christian College, and the first class of seven students graduated in 1972. Today, Hawaii Pacific University is a culturally diverse institution that attracts students from all 50 states and around the world. In fact, HPU is ranked among the most internationally diverse universities by the Institute for International Education and is also recognized for its sizeable international student population by U.S. News & World Report. Both the Princeton Review and U.S. News have recognized HPU as a top college in its region.

Programs Offered

HPU offers a wide variety of undergraduate and graduate degrees, including undergraduate degrees in more than 50 areas and 14 different graduate degrees. Undergraduate programs include more than 40 Bachelor of Arts majors, 20 different Bachelor of Science majors, 10 different business administration majors, a Bachelor of Education, and Bachelor of Science degrees in social work and nursing. Master’s programs are available in business administration, clinical mental health counseling, information systems, secondary education, social work, marine science, and more. Due to HPU’s affiliation with the Oceanic Institute, the university is particularly well known for its hands-on programs in marine biology and oceanography that emphasize marine aquaculture and ocean resource management. The university also provides master’s programs that are completely online to better serve its students. These include an online MBA and an online Master of Arts in Organizational Change.


Hawaii Pacific University is regionally accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, Accrediting Commission for Senior Colleges and Universities. The university has maintained this accreditation since 1973.


Hawaii Pacific University considers high school GPA, the rigor of high school course work, standardized test scores (i.e., SAT or ACT), extracurricular activities, and the applicant’s personal statement when making admissions decisions for those who want to enter as undergraduate freshmen. Admissions staff review applications year-round on a rolling basis. Prospective students are encouraged to take four years of English, four years of history or social studies, three years of math, and two years of natural science in high school; the university looks favorably on applicants who have taken AP or honors courses in high school. Admissions requirements to science-heavy programs like marine biology, oceanography, or environmental science are more rigorous, requiring applicants to have a minimum 3.0 high school GPA in math and science courses, and to have taken three years of high school science classes, including biology and chemistry (physics is recommended), and mathematics through trigonometry (calculus is recommended). In addition, some, but not all, undergraduate programs require letters of recommendation.

Graduate admissions requirements differ by program, but in general, applicants will need to possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, two letters of recommendation, an essay in up to 500 words, and demonstrate a high undergraduate GPA. Professional work experience may be considered as well, and some programs require a professional resume and standardized tests such as the GMAT, GRE, or PRAXIS.

Admissions Contact

Hawaii Pacific University
1164 Bishop Street
Honolulu, Hawai’i 96813
(808) 544-0200
1-866-CALL-HPU (toll-free)
admissions@hpu.edu (undergraduate admissions)
graduate@hpu.edu (graduate admissions)

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