WCC to offer first-of-its-kind digital degree in Hawaiian Studies

WCC to offer first-of-its-kind digital degree in Hawaiian Studies
Hawaiian studies will be expanded with a new online course at Windward Community College. (Source: University of Hawaii)

HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - A new associates degree in Hawaiian Studies is said to be the first of its kind in the world.

Windward Community College will soon be offering the Hawai’iloa program starting next month.

The degree is entirely online and open to anyone across the world.

The two-year-program will be broken up into eight weeks of classes instead of the usual 16-week course.

Students will cover a wide range of topics, learning everything from the Hawaiian language to Hawaiian mythology.

“The name Hawaiʻiloa, or distant Hawaiʻi, is applicable to the aspirations of this cohort—to pull in our Hawaiians who have voyaged near and far from home, and join them back into the fabric of our people, culture and history through this educational endeavor,” Hawaiian language instructor Keoki Faria said.

The school says that Native Hawaiians living on the mainland will pay in-state, resident tuition for the degree program.

“UH recognizes its kuleana to provide educational opportunities to Native Hawaiians who have moved away. Sometimes it is when they’ve moved so far from home that it sparks a desire to learn more about their heritage," Windward CC Academic Affairs Dean Colette Higgins said.

The deadline to apply is Oct. 2. The university is inviting interested applicants to attend a Zoom information session on Monday, Sept. 28 at noon.

Email Kuʻulei Miranda, Native Hawaiian counselor, at kuulei.miranda@hawaii.edu for the Zoom link.

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