our graduate program

… strive for excellence

The Department of Oceanography is located on the University’s largest campus (about 20,000 students), overlooking Waikīkī and downtown Honolulu, the State Capitol and business and cultural center of Hawaiʻi. As a designated “area of excellence”, the marine and earth sciences enjoy strong support at the State and University levels. This has led to rapid expansion of faculty, facilities, and programs over the past several years, and the establishment of the School of Ocean and Earth Science and Technology (SOEST) in 1988.

Including Cooperating and Affiliate members, approximately 60 Graduate Faculty teach and/or advise graduate students in the Oceanography field of study. The collective research expertise and programs of the faculty provide a diversity of potential projects and employment opportunities for students. Departmental Faculty are organized into three Divisions which coordinate educational and research programs for sub-disciplines, maintain shared equipment, and provide secretarial and other services (e.g., student access to computers and workstations) through division offices. Nā Kama Kai is the Oceanography Department graduate student organization that serves both an academic and social function and formally represents the interests of students to the faculty.

Whether you seek a Master’s degree or a PhD, your learning experience will be rich, meaningful and unparalleled. As a student specializing in one of our three disciplines, biological, marine geology and geochemistry or physical oceanography, you will prepare for a gratifying career in academia, industry and government. The M.S. and Ph.D. programs offer a level of rigor and quality that assure future demand for your important and substantive scientific contributions. As you complete specialized and required coursework, you will also engage in independent research where you will have access to cutting-edge resources, excellent guidance, internationally recognized faculty, mentorship and support.

A career in oceanography promises a life of adventure and contribution. You will join a community of scientists and other specialists who love the ocean and are dedicated to its conservation. You’ll engage in science with important implications for our immediate and distant future. Your work can impact the world of medicine, ecology, the ocean’s biosphere and its physical nature. With a University of Hawaiʻi education, your passion to contribute to the well-being of our planet can materialize.