The UHM School of Architecture provides the opportunity for a student to earn an accredited degree in the field of architecture. The only U.S. school of architecture in the middle of the Pacific region, it has been actively and directly engaged in the life and mission of the Mānoa campus through design/research/outreach efforts on campus and in the community.
The University of Hawai‘i is one of the most diverse universities in the United States, so the student body and faculty within the School are naturally diverse. The University is a Carnegie tier-one research institution, and the only National Resource Center for Pacific Island Studies, and one of the only nine National Resource Centers for Southeast Asian Studies. This status provides many opportunities for pursuing funded research unique to the region, resulting in an exceptional level of support for many of the research and study areas the School has chosen to pursue. The Asia Collection in Hamilton Library on the Mānoa campus is recognized as one of the nation’s best, and the Hawai‘inuakea School of Hawaiian Knowledge is the only one of its kind. The rich cultural diversity of the faculty and student body, the emphasis on bridging between Asia and the West, the close ties with institutions in Korea and China, and the curricular structure of the program itself directly address the current global context.
The School of Architecture offers the four-year undergraduate Bachelor of Environmental Design degree and the three-year Doctor of Architecture degree, Hawaii‘s only accredited degree in architecture. Our undergraduate program provides a solid foundation for careers in the design and building industries, including architecture, landscape architecture, urban design, historic conservation, and construction management. Our accredited graduate program prepares students for leadership in the professional workforce. Students who earn the D.Arch. are eligible for licensure as registered architects in all 54 U.S. jurisdictions, including Hawai‘i.
Hawai‘i offers students one of the world’s richest settings for the study of built and natural environments. UH-M is a land, sea, and space grant university especially well-situated to engage design inquiry and experimentation in a twenty-first century context.
Our programs orient to the kuleana of the University of Hawai‘i as an indigenous-serving Hawaiian Place of Learning. The Hawaiian ethos is the intellectual and professional foundation on which we build our mission and curriculum.
1946 Architectural education at the University of Hawai‘i begins with a Pre-Architecture program offered in the College of Applied Science with an inaugural class of 25 students.
1960 The university transfers all pre-architecture courses to the Department of Art.
1965 The faculty establishes the four-year B.A. in Pre-Architecture.
1967 The Department of Art becomes the Department of Art and Architecture and the B.F.A. in Environmental Design replaced the B.A. in Pre-architecture.
1969 The College of Arts and Sciences forms new Department of Architecture, with Bruce Etherington as founding chair.
1971 The university approves the Master of Architecture program.
1972 The National Architectural Accrediting Board (NAAB) awards the M.Arch. initial accreditation.
1976 The faculty reorganizes the Department of Architecture and develops a professional Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch.) degree.
1976 The NAAB accredits the B.Arch. program.
1980 The School conferred the first B.Arch. degree.
1985 The Hawaiʻi State Legislature budgets funds to construct a new building adjacent to George Hall.
1993 Raymond Yeh succeeds Elmer Botsai as dean.
1994 The university completes the school's present building at 2410 Campus Road, designed by John Hara, FAIA.
1996 The School received full-term NAAB re-accreditation for both its existing B.Arch. first professional degree and its M.Arch. first professional degree.
1999 The University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa proposes the Architecture Doctorate degree and the first class to enroll enters the program.
2004 The National Architectural Accrediting Board recognizes the Doctorate of Architecture D.Arch degree as a professional architecture degree, and makes the program's accreditation retroactive to January 1, 2001, to be concurrent with the terms of accreditation for the Bachelor and Master of Architecture programs.
2005 The Arch.D. replaces the M.Arch. degree.
2007 Clark Llewellyn succeeds Raymond Yeh as dean.
2008 In accordance with the 2004 NAAB Conditions of Accreditation, the school changes its degree nomenclature from "Architectural Doctorate" (Arch.D.) to "Doctor of Architecture" (D.Arch.).
2011 The school introduces the Global Track/China Focus program, which features a dual professional degree with Tongji University in Shanghai.
2012 The school separates the 7-year D.Arch. program into a 4-year pre-professional B.Env.D. (Bachelor of Environmental Design) degree, and the 3-year NAAB-accredited Doctor of Architecture.
2014 Daniel Friedman succeeds Clark Llewellyn as dean.
2015 The school signs a Memo of Understanding with the Nagaoka Institute of Design in Nagaoka, Japan, establishing a student/faculty exchange program.
Global Connection + Diversity
The University of Hawai‘i is one of the most culturally diverse universities in the United States, and the student body and faculty within the School reflect that diversity. The extensive opportunities for cross-cultural collaboration in coursework and research, the availability of a wide range of scholarly and research options on campus, the proximity of the East-West Center and the surrounding Honolulu community, all support the mission, goals and programs of the School.
Connections are the essence of architecture which is complimented within our diverse school of architecture student body consisting of 300 students, representing over 14 countries. These students are encouraged — even required — to step outside the normal bounds of their cultural comforts and pursue experiences far and wide. Our Study Abroad and Practicum Firms opportunities further our vision of establishing global connections, providing the opportunity to experience a growing list of 50 professional practices. These highly involved firms are globally respected and connected.
The UHM heavily participates in exchange agreements with various universities in the Asia-Pacific Region.
UHM International Programs
Students have also participated in short term international exchange experiences between architecture schools in Australia, China, Hong Kong, Micronesia, Japan, Korea, Taiwan & Thailand. Recent class and student organization trips include Japan, Europe, Peru, Korea, Alaska, Samoa, Los Angeles, Oregon, London, Florida and Malaysia.
Asia Pacific Focus
Our international collaborations lend to a multi-perspective lens, providing greater marketability in a global world. The School is evolving its educational mission and research efforts to take full advantage of the unique opportunities that result from this diversity and Asia Pacific Focus.