Welcome to the UH Hilo Anthropology Department

Anthropology is the holistic study of human cultures, our place in nature and the positive impact we may have in our global village.


Anthropology club taking care of the environment Welcome and E Komo Mai to the Department of Anthropology! With an open-door policy and a tangible attitude of engagement, we have a strong tradition of mentoring students to a successful future. We distinguish ourselves from other anthropology departments by our cultural and physical location in the Hawaiian Islands, which is reflected in stimulating and thought-provoking class discussions in which we locate ourselves as individuals and as groups and the relationships we build within our community.

Anthropology helps students gain a fuller understanding of human behavior through introductory and advanced courses in the subfields of archaeology, physical anthropology, cultural anthropology, and linguistics. Field courses, field trips, and labs are designed to take advantage of the varied ecology, history, and the rich multicultural environment of Hawaiʻi Island. Stop by for a chat, cruise our website, or just take a class to discover the wonderful world of anthropology.

Looking forward to seeing you!

Learn more about the Anthropology Department.

Kathy Kawelu ,
Chair and Associate Professor of the Department of Anthropology