Voyaging and navigation revival in the Marshall Islands

Anthropology is an engaging discipline devoted to the humanistic and scientific study of humankind with a commitment to educational outreach and advocacy. The Department of Anthropology is home to a diverse community of anthropologists united in our dedication to the communities of Hawaiʻi, the broader island groups of Oceania, and the individual communities within which we live and work. Students benefit by learning directly about our current research on such varied topics as heritage management, traditional navigation and voyaging, biocultural aspects of women’s health, cross-cultural analysis of stress, and linguistic analysis of Polynesian and Asian languages.

Our undergraduate experience offers opportunities for professional development, research, and collaborative projects through course work and research assistantships. Anthropology students and their professors ask questions about all components of the human condition, and seek to describe and interpret human behavior and culture, language, biology, and our relationship to the environment. We provide students with meaningful and tangible experiences and facilitate conversations that are dynamic, provocative, and steeped in critical analysis.

In addition to the B.A. in Anthropology, the department offers an M.A. in Heritage Management and co-sponsors several certificates, including the Certificate in Pacific Island Studies and Global Engagement Certificate.

B.A. in Anthropology

M.A. in Heritage Management

First Anthropology MA program CohortThe first Heritage Management cohort along with members of the Anthropology faculty

The Heritage Management program primarily addresses heritage issues affecting Hawaiʻi and the Pacific, with a focus on archaeological heritage, traditional cultural properties, and cultural impact assessments. The program complements UH Mānoa graduate programs offered in Applied Archaeology and the graduate certificate in Historic Preservation . The M.A. in Heritage Management is for students who seek careers in a multitude of governmental agencies, private-sector consulting firms, and in education, who work with the interpretation and preservation of cultural heritage.

One major benefit of having such a program in Hilo is that it will reach a somewhat different pool of descendant community members who can then gain leadership positions within consulting firms, community organizations, and county, state and federal positions related to heritage management. Without the M.A. program, many UH Hilo students end up working with B.A. degrees for existing firms, but state regulations bar them from obtaining leadership positions in those organizations unless they obtain a graduate degree.

Admissions to the program are currently made every other year in the Fall semesters on odd years (2023, 2025, 2027...). For more information on admission, please see the Admissions Guide

Please contact Dr. Peter Mills for more information.

Program Requirements