Explore the tropical paradise of the Hawaiian islands of O’ahu, Maui, and the Big Island, where white-sand beaches, turquoise waters, and tropical forests become our classroom. Building on nearly 40 years of Hawaiian programming and our long-standing partnerships with impactful local organizations, this unique semester allows us to investigate important environmental and social issues while immersing ourselves in the Aloha culture. This semester will dive into ecological restoration and conservation, food security, and traditional farming practices all while getting to know these famous islands like a local!
O'ahu, Maui, The Big Island
September 1 – November 9
*SCUBA E-Learning and inter-island flights additional
- Delve Into Polynesian Culture and Learn How Locals are Preserving Their Heritage
- Earn Your PADI SCUBA Certification in Kona's Crystal Clear Waters
- Participate in the Restoration of an Ancient Fishpond in Hale'iwa Village
- Explore Hawai'i's Volcanic Origins and Unique Ecology in Volcanoes National Park
- Lend a Hand at a Working Taro Farm and Learn About Organic Farming Methods
- Develop Surfing Skills Through Lessons on Three Islands
- Help Restore Important Cultural Land and Learn About Medicinal Plant Usage
- Support Hawai'i's Movement toward Food Sustainability
- Complete Workshops on Aquaculture and Permaculture on Campus at UHMC
- Hike Hawai'i's Many Unique Trail Systems and Catch Breathtaking Sunsets
Ecological Restoration and Conservation
Participate in restoring the ancient and treasured fishpond in the heart of the Hale'iwa Village of O'ahu. Learn about the history of the local community and how their traditional fishing practices could be the future of their food insecurity challenges. Grow in your knowledge of aquaculture and permaculture at the University of Hawai'i Maui College campus. Assist in restoration projects throughout East Maui that preserve cultural lands and endemic plants. Learn about soil restoration and work with O’ahu’s only industrial composter.
Cultural Immersion and Historical Exploration
Explore Hawai'i's volcanic origins and unique ecology in Volcanoes National Park. Discover how native Hawaiians are preserving their heritage in the sacred Waipio Valley through workshops by locals on medicinal plants, macadamia nut and coconut processing, lei making, and food sustainability.
Examining Food Insecurity
Support Hawai'i’s movement toward food sustainability as you learn the basic principles of permaculture and explore the way similar practices were used for generations by the Hawaiian people. On the iconic North Shore of Oahu, wade knee-deep in the flood fields of a local taro farm to learn about its importance in Hawaiian culture. Assist with planting, harvesting, and repairing irrigation systems while observing traditional organic farming techniques.
Get a behind-the-scenes look into the incredible forces that built these unique islands at Hawai'i’s Volcanoes National Park while helping with invasive species and trail management. Trade your hiking shoes for fins to earn your PADI SCUBA certification in crystal clear blue waters on Kailua-Kona. Take to the waves during your surf lessons on all three islands in one of the most beautiful surf capitals of the world.
Have questions? Speak to one of our Program Directors, give them a call at (415) 332.5075 , they love talking about their trips!