Dual credit programs

Dual credit programs provide opportunities for Hawai‘i DOE high school students to enroll in University of Hawai‘i (UH) classes­­­ at the 100-level and above and – upon successful completion – earn both high school and college credit. Students should consult with the colleges they plan to attend post-high school graduation regarding credit transferability. The two most common dual credit programs in Hawai‘i are Early College and Running Start.

Early College

Participating students in grades 9-12 enroll in sheltered (i.e., composed only of their high school peers) UH courses taught by UH instructors at the 100 level and above. The sheltered environment allows for students to receive support from their high school along with the UH campus. The Early College program aims in part to provide students with the confidence to know that they can handle the rigors of a college education as well as start building momentum toward a college degree.

In February 2024, the Hawai‘i DOE and UH jointly released the Early College Strategic Directions to set a collective vision in the state for the Early College program. The Strategic Directions will guide future practice–notably in focusing efforts on underrepresented groups and leveraging the program to increase college enrollment.

Early College programming varies by participating high school. Please contact the Early College Coordinator at your high school for more information.


​Campbell High, Kapolei High, Nānākuli High & Intermediate, Pearl City High, Wai‘anae High, ​Waipahu High
‘Aiea High, Leilehua High, Mililani High, Radford High, Waialua High & Intermediate
Farrington High, Kalani High, Kaimuki High, Ke Kula Kaiapuni ʻO Ānuenue, McKinley High, Roosevelt High
Castle High, Kahuku High & Intermediate, Kailua High, Kalāheo High, Olomana School
Kapa‘a High, Kaua‘i High, Waimea High
Baldwin High, Hāna High & Elementary, Kekaulike High, Lāhaināluna High, Maui High
​Lāna‘i High & Elementary
Moloka‘i High

Hilo High, Honoka‘a High & Intermediate, Ka‘ū High, Ke Kula ‘O ‘Ehunuikaimalino, Kea‘au High, Kealakehe High, Kohala High, Konawaena High, Pāhoa High, Waiākea High

​​​​​​​​Running Start

Eligible high school students enroll in UH courses at the 100 level and above and attend classes alongside regularly enrolled UH students on the UH campus. Transportation is the responsibility of the student.

Always consult with the appropriate counselor at your high school before enrolling in any dual credit course. Students need to complete the Dual Credit Application, which requires authorization from the student's parent/guardian, high school counselor and high school principal. The student’s high school counselor should review the need for placement scores and other prerequisites, as applicable, for the college campus where the student plans to enroll. The counselor will also help to determine if the college course is fulfilling a specific requirement or elective for high school graduation. Once all approvals have been received, the student will submit their Dual Credit application form, along with a University of Hawaii application, to the UH campus they wish to attend. Once admitted, the student should meet with the University of Hawaii Running Start counselor to receive additional assistance in registering for courses and ensuring that all college admission requirements are met.

Although dual credit programs provide a great opportunity to build momentum toward a college degree, they also come with great responsibility. A student who decides to drop or withdraw from a college course mid-semester runs the risk of not fulfilling high school graduation requirements and the grade will remain on their permanent college transcript. It is important for students and parents to review all resource material and seek additional information, if needed, from their high school and/or college counselors before committing to participate.

​GEAR UP Hawaii scholarships

GEAR UP Hawai‘i offers a limited number of scholarships to students who are considered economically disadvantaged. Other scholarship opportunities may also be available; students should check with their high school counselor, or their UH Running Start Counselor at the campus they plan to attend, to see if other forms of financial assistance are available.

Contact Information

Wendi Vincent

Phone: (808) 784-6450

Email: Wendi.Vincent@k12.hi.us


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