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10 Hawaii Scholarships to Save You Thousands on College

What’s Covered:


College is undoubtedly one of the steepest investments you’ll make. But it’s exactly that — an investment, and an important one at that. And you’ll find plenty of support to help you pay for your education. 


Are you a college-bound student in Hawaii? Here are 10 scholarships to help you out.


10 Hawaii Scholarships


1. Hawai’i Community Foundation Scholarships


Amount: Varies

Deadline: Varies

Eligibility: Residents of Hawaii planning on attending a two- or four-year college or university; must have a minimum 2.7 GPA and have full-time status

Application Requirements: Varies


The Hawai’i Community Foundation Scholarship program encompasses more than 170 funds, each with different criteria for eligibility and procedures for applying. Examples include the Ida M. Pope Memorial Scholarship for women of Hawaiian ancestry pursuing a major in health, science, or education and the Hoʻoulu Scholarship Fund for Pacific Islander students, including Hawaiians, who have stopped out and are returning to college.


2. Hawaii State Federal Credit Union Scholarship


Amount: $5,000

Deadline: January 31

Eligibility: Must be (or plan to be) a full-time student at an accredited institution, have a 2.5 GPA, and demonstrate financial need

Application Requirements: Application with personal and award impact statements, transcript, FAFSA, list of achievements and community service activities


Hawaii State Federal Credit Union offers scholarships to 20 Hawaii students attending a fully accredited university, college, or trade/vocational school. The scholarship program has awarded nearly $900,000 since 1996.


3. Fukunaga Scholarship Foundation


Amount: $20,000 over four years

Deadline: N/A

Eligibility: Hawaii students

Application Requirements: N/A


Since 1950, the Fukunaga Scholarship Foundation has awarded more than $180,000 in scholarships. The awards are offered to encourage students from Hawaii to pursue a career in business. Applicants are evaluated on the basis of academic standing, leadership ability, financial need, and a demonstrated commitment to pursuing a career in business.


4. Hawaii Rotary Youth Foundation Scholarships


Amount: $5,000-$10,000

Deadline: February

Eligibility: Graduating Hawaii high school seniors

Application Requirements: Application, photo


Every participating Rotary Club will choose one student to receive a $5,000 scholarship to help them with their education expenses. An HRYF committee will then select one student attending a mainland university and one student attending a Hawaii university to receive a  $10,000 Maurice J. Sullivan scholarship each.


5. Hawaii Education Association Scholarships


Amount: $2,000

Deadline: N/A

Eligibility: Graduating high school seniors; open to HEA members, their children, and/or their grandchildren

Application Requirements: Application form, transcript, personal statement, financial aid form, three recommendation letters


HEA awards two scholarships of $2,000 each to graduating high school seniors who will enroll in an accredited two- or four-year institution of higher learning. Preference is given to students who plan to major in education. As part of the applications, students must write a personal statement addressing their reasons for pursuing higher education, major-related interests, and how the scholarship will help them achieve their goals.


6. Hawaiian Civic Club of Honolulu Scholarship Program


Amount: Determined by HCCH Scholarship Awards Subcommittee

Deadline: N/A

Eligibility: Must be a resident of Hawaii and a full-time student in an accredited two- or four-year college or vocational program; must have a 2.5 minimum GPA

Application Requirements: Essay


Established to inspire academic achievement and help Hawaiians attain higher levels of education, this scholarship, created by Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalaniana‘ole in 1918, funds students’ tuition, fees, books, and other educational expenses. Awards are based on the quality of applicants’ essays. Preference is given to applicants of Hawaiian ancestry.


7. Ambassadors of Aloha Scholarship


Amount: N/A

Deadline: January 31

Eligibility: Hawaiian residents and US citizens who have a minimum 3.0 GPA; must participate in canoeing, surfing, kayaking, swimming, diving, water polo, sailing, or volleyball

Application Requirements: Application, personal statement, transcript, two letters of recommendation, two pictures, FAFSA


Ambassadors of Aloha Scholarships are available for students who are currently attending or plan to attend college. They are designated for athletes participating in the sports mentioned above with a record of accomplishments and the intention to complete college. According to the website, “Applicants should demonstrate the spirit of aloha through leadership and community involvement.”


8. Mamoru and Aiko Takitani Foundation Scholarship


Amount: $3,000-$10,000

Deadline: February 1

Eligibility: Graduating high school seniors

Application Requirements: Application, recommendations


Each year, an outstanding graduating senior from every qualifying high school will receive a $3,000 scholarship. Then, each school district, the Hawaii Catholic Schools, and the Hawaii Association of Independent Schools will select finalists to receive an additional $2,000 scholarship, and three scholars will be selected from among the finalists for an additional three awards.


9. Pauahi Foundation Scholarships


Amount: Varies

Deadline: December 23

Eligibility: Varies

Application Requirements: Application


The Pauahi Foundation administers more than 200 scholarship fund opportunities to support undergraduate and graduate levels of study, along with trade and vocational courses. These merit-based awards are largely based on merit, while some are restricted to those who demonstrate financial need or to those from specific geographic areas.


10. Merriman’s Restaurant Scholarship


Amount: N/A

Deadline: April 10

Eligibility: Students entering or continuing in the culinary arts field in Hawaii

Application Requirements: Application, two references, 


Every year, Merriman’s Restaurant awards Culinary Scholarships to assist future culinary professionals based on their outstanding qualities, passion for the field, and financial need. As part of their application, candidates must describe their activities and organizations and explain how the scholarship will benefit them financially to further their future in the food-service industry.


Tips on Applying for Scholarships


Maximize institutional aid first.


The college or university you choose to attend is usually your best source of financial aid in terms of both need-based and merit-based scholarships. Therefore, that should be your starting point. But if your chosen school doesn’t offer enough aid, additional awards can fill in the gaps.


Apply to scholarships that fit your demographics.


There are many general scholarships, but those are typically more difficult to win than ones with narrower criteria. Scholarships aimed at people of certain demographics or with specific majors and/or careers in mind are easier to secure since you’ll be competing against a much smaller pool of applicants.


Apply, apply, apply.


Apply, and keep applying. The more you apply (especially if you focus on niche awards), the more likely you are to win. So, while you shouldn’t neglect your schoolwork and other commitments, you should make scholarship applications an important part of the college process.

Short Bio
Laura Berlinsky-Schine is a freelance writer and editor based in Brooklyn with her demigod/lab mix Hercules. She specializes in education, technology and career development. She also writes satire and humor, which has appeared in Slackjaw, Points in Case, Little Old Lady Comedy, Jane Austen’s Wastebasket, and Funny-ish. View her work and get in touch at: www.lauraberlinskyschine.com.