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Kapiolani Community College: Academics, Admissions & Tuition Info

Learn what certificate and associate's degree programs Kapiolani Community College offers. Research its academics, and read about its admission and financial aid info to make an informed education decision.

About Kapiolani Community College

Kapiolani Community College (KCC) is a 2-year, public school located on the island of O'ahu in Hawaii. The school is located not far from the capital city of Honolulu, and it occupies 44 acres near the Diamond Head Crater.

The college was established in 1946, under the name Kapiolani Technical School, before the islands gained statehood. At that time, the only program of study was in food service. By the time Hawaii officially became a state, practical nursing, business education, and dental assisting programs had been added to the curriculum. In 1965, Kapiolani became affiliated with the community college system for the University of Hawaii and remains part of this program today.

KCC is now the largest of the 7 community colleges that are part of the University of Hawaii System. The school is known for the establishment of the Culinary Institute of the Pacific, now absorbed by the UH System and funded by the University of Hawaii Foundation.


KCC offers a variety of programs of study through 6 departments: arts & sciences, business education, culinary education, health education, hospitality & tourism education, and legal education. The liberal arts track at KCC is the largest program among all the schools affiliated with the University of Hawaii, and it has more than 4,500 students enrolled in classes.

On the KCC campus, students can attend traditional day courses, as well as night and weekend classes, for college credit. Non-credit programs are also available for students participating in continuing education, English as a second language, and other programs. Other special programs offered by the college include cooperative education and internships, a first-year experience program for new students, independent study options, and study abroad opportunities.


KCC maintains an open admissions policy, allowing enrollment for students over the age of 18 and in possession of a high school diploma or equivalent. All first-time students submit their applications online. A residency declaration is required for all students to determine tuition costs and fees. Optional paperwork includes any applicable transcripts and AP/CLEP test scores for credit. Acceptance notifications are typically sent out within 2 weeks. Before registering for classes, all students must provide proof of immunization against tuberculosis and measles/mumps/rubella.

In 2011, student enrollment totaled 9,023 individuals, 51.2% of whom were women. Native Hawaiian or part-Hawaiian students accounted for 18% of the student population, while 15% of the student body was Japanese. Caucasians made up 12% of the community, as did individuals identifying themselves as being of mixed ethnicity.

Tuition & Financial Aid

There are different tuition rates for Hawaii residents, Pacific Islanders, and non-residents. For the 2012-2013 school year, Hawaii resident students paid about $2,424 for tuition. Pacific Islanders paid about $3,636 in tuition, while non-residents can expect costs of around $7,104. All students also pay $60 in fees and an estimated $948 for books and supplies.

Kapiolani Community College provides more than 50 different scholarships to eligible students every year. Amounts available for distribution vary per year, but range from $100 to $3,600. During the 2010-2011 school year, 22% of students received scholarship or grant assistance and 8% utilized federal loans.

School Type Public, 2-year*
Degrees Offered Associate's degrees, certificates*
Religious Affiliation None*
Academic Calendar Semesters**
School Setting Large city*
Student Body 9,023 undergraduate students in fall 2011*
Student Housing None available*
Programs of Study 47 programs offered**
Student-Faculty Ratio 19 to 1*
Most Popular Fields of Study by Degree Level (Number of Recipients) In 2011
Associate's: Liberal Arts and Sciences/Liberal Studies (383)
Certificates: Licensed Practical/Vocational Nurse Training (33)*
Graduation Rates For students who began in fall 2007, 3% within normal time, 17% within 150% of normal time, and 27% in twice as long as normal time*
Admission Rate Open admission policy*
Entering Class Size about 673 full-time students in fall 2011***
First-Year Retention Rates 64% for full-time students, 49% for part-time students*
Application Due Date For general college admission:
fall semester, Dec 1-July 15; spring semester, Jun 1-Dec 1; summer session, Dec 1-May 6**
Decision Notification Date Within 2 weeks once all applicable documents have been received**
Tuition (2012-2013) $2,424 for HI residents, $7,104 for out-of-state students*
Financial Aid Sources Available (Percent of New Students Receiving it) In 2011: Federal grants (29%), state and local grants (2%), institutional scholarship (31%), federal loans (11%)*
Percent of Students Receiving Some Form of Aid 45% of new students in 2011*

Sources: *College Navigator, National Center for Education Statistics; **Kapiolani Community College; ***IPEDS Data Center, National Center for Education Statistics.

School Contact Information

  • Address: 4303 Diamond Head Road, Honolulu, Hawaii 96816
  • Phone: (808) 734-9555
  • Website: www.kcc.edu

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