With sandy beaches, warm weather and beautiful views, the islands of Hawaii draw an estimated 8 million tourists to the middle of the Pacific Ocean each year. While Hawaii may seem like a logical place for vacation, you may have overlooked it for your education. However, some Hawaii business programs are highly ranked, and the tourism industry means there are plenty of potential customers to be found if you want to start your own company.
In addition, you can study online at Hawaii business schools which means you can fit in classes around your family time or work schedule. What's more, business skills are valued in virtually every industry. After graduation, you can stay on the islands to work or take your newfound knowledge and pursue a career anywhere across the country, or even the globe.
Online Business Programs in Hawaii
Business education programs in Hawaii include everything from short-term certificates to advanced graduate degrees. Popular options include the bachelor's degree in business administration and the master's degree in business administration, more commonly known as the MBA.
The University of Hawaii and Hawaii Pacific University are two the largest institutions offering business degrees in the state. The Shidler College of Business at the University of Hawaii-Manoa offers a bachelor's degree in business administration, a doctoral program and the following MBA options:
- Global MBA
- Part-time MBA
- Executive MBA
- Distance learning executive MBA
- Health care executive MBA
Meanwhile, the College of Business at Hawaii Pacific University offers a traditional full-time MBA that can be completed on its Honolulu campus in 24 months. Or working professionals can choose from the following options:
- Part-time MBA
- MBA FLEX Plus
- Online MBA
- 12-month MBA
- On-base MBA FLEX Plus
In 2014, Hawaii Pacific University was ranked among the top 25 schools in the country for its online MBA in international business, according to the website TheBestSchools.
Beyond the big universities, Hawaii business programs can be found at other schools, including the state's community colleges. However, these schools typically offer only certificates or associate degrees. For example, Kauai Community College on the island of Kauai has certificates in business and business technology.
Business Career Outlook in Hawaii
Business careers are diverse in every state, and Hawaii is no exception. Jobs are available in a variety of areas including management, human resources and finance. Here are some of the business occupations employing the largest number of people in Hawaii along with their average salaries and expected job growth.
|Position||Employment in Hawaii (2014)||Average Salary in Hawaii (2014)||Expected Job Growth (2012-2022)|
|General and Operations Managers||10,740||$96,940||12%|
|Human Resources Specialists||1,600||$58,530||1.8%|
|Administrative Services Managers||1,590||$67,070||12.3%|
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (2014)
For purposes of tracking jobs data, Hawaii is split into two sections by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. One section is the Honolulu metropolitan area while the second area is the Hawaii/Maui/Kauai nonmetropolitan area. Not surprisingly, most of the state's jobs are found in Honolulu and the island of Oahu.
For example, 1,650 of the state's 2,300 sales managers work in the Honolulu area, and in 2014, they had average salaries of $81,310. The remaining managers are spread across the other Hawaiian islands. While there are fewer jobs outside Oahu, they do pay slightly better with these managers earning an average of $82,250 in 2014.
Business Specializations in Hawaii
Business is a broad field, and students typically choose to focus on a particular area while earning their bachelor's degree or MBA. The following are some common specialties within the field of business.
- Human resources
- Leadership and management
- Marketing and advertising
- Project management
In addition to focusing their studies on a particular area, earning professional certifications can be another way to demonstrate expertise. While not necessary for all jobs, some employers prefer to hire those who have earned a credential for a professional organization. A number of organizations, including the American Management Association and National Retail Federation, offer credentialing programs.
Different Hawaii business schools may offer different specializations which means it's important for potential students to fully explore their options. Rather than settle on the first school you review, take the time consider several Hawaii business programs. Look for one that not only fits your schedule but also your career goals.
Shidler College of Business, University of Hawaii-Manoa, http://shidler.hawaii.edu/Long-term projections
Projections Central, http://www.projectionscentral.com/Projections/LongTerm
Rankings & Achievements, Hawaii Pacific University, http://www.hpu.edu/About_HPU/Rankings_and_Achievements.html
Occupational Employment Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Department of Labor, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes_hi.htm#13-0000