Business Administration and Economics

This is content from the Catalog 2019–2020 back issue. Please visit the current catalog for current information.

College of Business and Economics Office :
Office: COBE Building, Room 208
Tel: (808) 932-7272


Professor Emeritus:

  • Kelly Burke, Ph.D., Management Information Systems
  • Jerry Calton, Ph.D., Management
  • David Hammes, Ph.D., Economics
  • Hank Hennessey, Ph.D., Business Administration
  • Stephen Hora, D.B.A., Management Science and Statistics


  • Emmeline de Pillis, Ph.D., Management
  • Kimberly Furumo, Ph.D., Management Information Systems
  • Terrance Jalbert , Ph.D., Finance
  • Marcia Sakai , Ph.D., Business Administration and Economics

Associate Professors:

Assistant Professors:


The Department of Business Administration offers students the opportunity to receive a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) degree that is fully accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB International). The program offers majors in Accounting and in General Business. Within the General Business major, students select a concentration area from Finance, Marketing, General Management, Economics, Healthcare Management, or Professional Studies. The program is divided into three components: General Education, the Pre-Business program, and the Professional Business program. Some General Education requirements may be satisfied with courses from the Pre-Business program. The University also places several graduation requirements on all baccalaureate degree programs, and these must be satisfied by candidates for the BBA (Please see the Baccalaureate Degree Requirements.)

Students wishing to make timely progress toward graduation are urged to pay careful attention to all degree requirements. In addition, when planning a schedule of courses, it is imperative to be aware of course prerequisites and the frequency with which courses are offered, information that is available for each course in the Course Listings of this Catalog. To ensure progress toward graduation, students are strongly encouraged to meet with an advisor each semester before registering.


To assist individuals in acquiring the knowledge, attitudes and skills needed to be productive and responsible citizens in the global economy. The College serves students and communities primarily from the Island and State of Hawaiʻi, as well as students from the U.S. mainland and the Asia/Pacific region.

We are committed to:

  • Providing a personalized, high-quality baccalaureate business and economics education
  • Inspiring the development of ethical values and leadership skills within a context of cultural diversity
  • Offering opportunities for hands-on learning
  • Offering academic programs responsive to community needs
  • Supporting faculty excellence in teaching, research and service, with primary emphasis in teaching

Goals for Student Learning in the Major

General Business, BBA and Accounting, BBA

Upon graduating, our students should possess a common core of knowledge and skills that enables them to:

  • Demonstrate comprehension of the fundamental principles of essential business functions.
  • Express ideas clearly, logically, and persuasively in written communication.
  • Demonstrate the ability to identify, analyze, and decide on courses of action to resolve complex, unstructured problems, using appropriate tools and technology.

Admission Requirements

Before enrollment in upper-division (300–400-level) Business Administration courses, students majoring in either Business Administration major must have:

  • Filed a formal declaration of intent to major in either General Business or Accounting at least four weeks in advance of scheduled early-registration;
  • Completed 50 or more earned semester credit hours at the 100-level or higher;
  • Attained a cumulative grade point average of 2.50 or higher on work completed at UH Hilo (transfer students meeting other requirements may be provisionally admitted to upper-division courses during their first semester at UH Hilo, but will be required to earn at least a 2.5 GPA on their first 12 semester hours of credit at UH Hilo for continued enrollment in upper-division business courses); and
  • Successfully completed all course-specific prerequisites for each upper-division class attempted.

Career Prospects for Students

Students earning the BBA in General Business are prepared to become entry-level managers in a wide variety of private and public sector organizations. The BBA program is also a good choice for students interested in starting their own business upon graduation, since a primary focus is on smaller organizations and entrepreneurship in many of the courses at UH Hilo. Students may focus their elective coursework in specific areas such as finance, marketing, or information technology if they intend to specialize or seek certification in one of those fields upon graduation. The BBA is also an excellent preparation for advanced study in business.

The BBA in Accounting prepares students for professional careers in accounting and auditing, and satisfies the content-specific educational requirements for the CPA designation. The demand for graduates in accounting has continued to grow, and is forecast to remain strong throughout the next decade. This career offers excellent job and earning opportunities.

Special Aspects of the Program

Internships with local businesses and organizations are available to qualified students.

The College of Business and Economics sponsors the Lambda Psi chapter of the International Fraternity of Delta Sigma Pi (ΔΣΠ), which is a professional fraternity organized to foster the study of business in universities; to encourage scholarship, social activity, and the association of students for their mutual advancement by research and practice; to promote closer affiliation between the commercial world and students of commerce; and to further a higher standard of commercial ethics and culture and the civic and commercial welfare of the community. In addition, the College sponsors the Accounting Club, which serves to provide a professional development and community outreach forum for students with interest in accounting as a professional career. Members gain the opportunity to meet and interact with members of the accounting profession from the State and local areas, and to gain first-hand exposure to career possibilities in the area.

The College also sponsors an active chapter of Beta Gamma Sigma (ΒΓΣ), the premier honorary society for students of business, which inducts outstanding students from each year’s graduating class.

Requirements for Students in Related Programs or Special Circumstances

Students pursuing Agribusiness, Recreational Management, or other major, minor, or certificate program that include some Business Administration courses, as well as other non-business students wishing to register for upper-division (300-400 level) Business Administration courses, must have:

  • Completed 50 or more earned semester hours at the 100-level or higher at the time of initial enrollment;
  • Successfully completed all course-specific prerequisites;
  • Secured permission of the Business Administration department chair, who will consult with the course instructor; and
  • Accumulated no more than 30 total credits at any level in courses offered by the Business Administration Department, including any courses for which registration is being requested in the current semester.