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College of Engineering

For over one hundred years the College of Engineering (CoE) at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa has equipped students through excellence in teaching and research.

Our Mission

The role of the engineering profession has never been more vital in contributing to positive quality of life while also solving the significant challenges society faces today. Engineers are the creative technologists that make our lives easier. Engineers help solve complicated problems that threaten our well-being. Engineers assist in developing the critical infrastructure that protects and provides for our generation and those to come.

Since the first engineering degree at UH was awarded in 1912, nearly 10,000 engineering careers have been launched locally, nationally and internationally.

Fifty Years of Healing in Hawai‘i

Over the last seven years the College of Engineering has seen significant growth in engineering and pre-engineering enrollments rates, having grown from 800 to 1260. Additionally, the college has doubled its competitive research funding to over $8.5 million dollars.

The College of Engineering is largely focused on the needs and challenges faced by the state of Hawai‘i and the Asia Pacific region. Examples of these disciplines include: monitoring the health of critical structures such as dams and bridges; designing structures to withstand the effects of earthquakes, hurricanes, and tsunamis; improving roads and other infrastructure; mitigating and managing corrosion; water resource management; deploying responsible renewable energy; monitoring all aspects of urban life, and projects related to health sciences and quality of life. Additionally, the college partners with world class researchers at University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa in areas of space flight, oceanography and astronomical studies.

Consider these facts regarding the College of Engineering’s impact on education, research and the economy:

  • 10% of each graduating class remain for MS/PhD studies
  • In the past 30 years UH Mānoa engineering graduates working in Hawai‘i have generated more than 30,000 engineering related jobs
  • Engineering as an industry generates approximately 6 percent of Hawai‘i GDP (direct and indirect impact = more than $3,750M annually)
  • Nationally, seven out of ten top paying jobs for graduates are in engineering fields. The average starting salary of a UH Mānoa CoE graduate is approximately $56,000 (2x greater than the median Hawai‘i salary)
  • Engineering is at the core of the most critical sectors impacting our state and world: renewable energy, island sustainability, transportation, communication, security, military, manufacturing, construction, etc.

More important than ever before

The UH College of Engineering is an indispensable facet of sustainable living in Hawai‘i and the Asia-Pacific region. It leads the development of innovative solutions to meet the increasingly complex needs of our islands and our world.

The College must remain a key player in meeting the immediate and increasing needs of the State of Hawai’i by developing a workforce that can design new technological infrastructures like transportation mechanisms (electric vehicles and rail), renewable energy sources (solar, wind, geothermal), and new infrastructure for the internet and the security of its users.

Given the painful reality of declining state dollars allocated to public higher education, partnership with private donors is more important than ever before. We hope that you will join us and give generously as we grow our strong and vital engineering education to ensure sustainable growth in Hawai’i for generations to come.

Funding Priorities & Opportunities

Student Support

Undergraduate scholarship: 
Support an engineering undergraduate student for a year at a time ($2.5K gift), or through a named endowment that provides annual scholarships in perpetuity ($50K)

Graduate fellowship:
Support an engineering graduate student for a year at a time ($5K gift), or through a named endowment that provides annual scholarships in perpetuity ($100K)

Student project support:
An essential component of the student experience for budding engineers is the student project for the student chapters of the national professional societies – ASCE, ASME, IEEE, Society for Women Engineers, Engineers without Borders, etc. Dedicated gifts to student project support (either annual gifts or endowments) pays for equipment, materials and travel costs associated with projects.

Native Hawaiian Science and Engineering Mentoring Program (NHSEMP):
Over 100 Native Hawaiian students are enrolled in engineering (10%+ of undergraduates). The program ensures retention through mentoring and summer bridge programs ($10K one-time gift, or $200K endowment)

International Student Experience:
Provide a travel grant for students to participate in a Study Abroad opportunity. (Summer program - $100K endowment; $5K one-time gift; Semester program - $300K endowment; $15K gift)

Retention and Career Program:
Provide support for the College’s program aimed at helping retain undergraduate students already in the engineering or pre-engineering program, including special freshman courses, workshops and undergraduate engineering dorms. Private support is also sought for programs that help students find job, including career fairs and workshops to assist in preparing students for the workplace environment ($100K endowment; $5K gift)

Programming Excellence

Named Endowed Professorship:
Support a distinguished faculty member by providing a salary and/or programming stipend each year to support teaching and research ($500K endowment)

Named Endowed Chair:
Support a distinguished faculty member serving as chair by providing a salary and/or programming stipend each year to support teaching and research ($2M endowment)

Visiting Professorships:
Support an expert visiting faculty member every two years for a semester at the college by providing associated expenses ($750K endowment)

Research Excellence

The College has identified eight faculty research clusters that highlight our expertise and have the capacity to bring national reputation to the College. Gifts will support research in one of the following research clusters by helping fund a graduate student and/or research equipment ($500K endowment; $25K gift).

  • Autonomous, Unmanned Systems
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Coastal Infrastructure
  • Communications, Radar and Cyber Physical Systems
  • Computer Engineering and Computer Modeling and Simulation
  • Recycling, Re-Manufacturing and Corrosion
  • Renewable Energy
  • Water, Waste and Environmental Engineering
Outreach and Community Engagement

K-12 STEM Outreach:
Support the College’s outreach and recruitment efforts through student visits to the College, visits by Engineering students and staff to K-12 schools, and recruitment fairs ($100K endowment; $10K gift)

STEM Student Ambassadors:
Fund part-time engineering students who are employed as STEM ambassadors to help staff K-12 school outreach and other community functions ($100K endowment; $10K gift)

Building Projects

Holmes Hall Renovation:
Historic Holmes hall is scheduled for a re-design and renovation that will enhance teaching facilities, improve research opportunities, and provide the need space for student clubs and activities. Some support for this effort will come from the State of Hawai‘i and the University of Hawai‘i, but the College must also rely on its supporters and friends to ensure that we are offering our students and faculty a state-of-the-art environment for classrooms, laboratories, faculty offices, and study spaces.

  • Named Lab - $1M endowment
  • Named Dean’s suite - $200K endowment
  • Named Classroom - $100K endowment
  • Named Conference Room - $100K endowment
  • Lab equipment - $25K - $100K gift
  • Classroom equipment - $25K – 100K gift
Special Initiatives

Entrepreneur Program:
The College seeks to advance its focus on Innovation and Entrepreneurship, including drawing upon talents of alumni and former faculty for counsel, leadership and assistance. Support in this area will provide for expenses associated with the program, including entrepreneurship teams to compete at UH and national competitions (undergraduate - $100K endowment; $10K gift; graduate - $300K endowment; $15K gift)

UH i-Lab:
In conjunction with the Entrepreneur Program, the College is focusing on improving and creating an environment more conducive for innovation and entrepreneurship. The i-Lab will be led by the College of Engineering, but will be an interdisciplinary endeavor between the College and other academic units at UH. This lab (current campus space has already been assigned) will include dedicated space for innovation and creativity across multiple disciplines allowing for creative interaction between students and faculty with varying knowledge and expertise. The lab will include equipment and materials that facilitate ideas generation, design, prototyping, testing, etc.

  • Named i-Lab - $2M endowment
  • i-Lab Programming Support - $50 - $250K endowment
  • i-Lab Equipment support - $25K - $100K gift

Maker Space:
The advent of the affordable 3-D printer and other economically priced desktop manufacturing systems have spawned a growing national movement called The Maker Movement. In conjunction with the College’s entrepreneurial endeavors and the i-Lab initiative, the College plans to develop a dedicated Maker Space for students and professors overseeing the Maker movement. Dedicated gifts to the Maker Space will allow for funding for special equipment and materials for faculty/student projects, while also allowing for student travel to Maker Fairs in the United States and beyond. ($100K endowment; $10K one-time gift)

Support The Journey

Together, we can move Hawai‘i and its people toward a remarkable future.
Together, we can Journey Beyond

For information on supporting  The John A. Burns School of Medicine, & Literature, please contact:

Elaine Evans
Director of Development
(808) 692-0991

Julie Inouye
Associate Director of Development and Alumni Engagement
(808) 692-0873