Office of International Students and Scholars

Aloha and welcome to Hawai’i Pacific University and the Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS).  The university is home to more than 600 international students and scholars representing diverse cultures and viewpoints from over 80 countries.  We believe that international students and scholars at HPU are a vital to cross-cultural understanding and our goal is to promote international educational exchange through all our programs and interactions. 

A student’s affiliation with OISS begins immediately after the admission process and continues well beyond graduation. OISS staff can advise international students, scholars and faculty on immigration, cultural, financial, academic and personal concerns, and makes appropriate referrals when necessary.


  • To represent the university to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the U.S. Department of State, and other government agencies dealing with international visitors.

  • To provide international students and scholars with advice and documentation necessary to maintain their legal status within the United States.

  • To guide international students and scholars in their adaptation to the American culture and campus life.

  • To maintain university compliance regarding regulations concerning international students and scholars.


  • Travel Signature: If you are planning to travel outside of the U.S, make sure that you have a valid travel signature from OISS prior to departure.

  • Reduce Course Load: If next semester is your final semester and you will not be registering as a full-time student, you will need to submit a Reduced Course Load Form for us to approve.

  • Program Extension: If you have decided/need to stay an extra semester to finish your program, please submit a Program Extension Form for us to approve. 

OISS would like to remind everyone that HPU welcomes all international students and scholars, regardless of country of origin. Click below for a full statement from the Director of OISS.

Dear HPU International Students and Scholars,

I would like to take this opportunity to address what is currently happening in the United States that is affecting international students and scholars across our nation. 

Most of you are aware that a travel ban was placed on foreign nationals from the countries of Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.  We assure you that the Office of International Students and Scholars, along with university administration, will be monitoring, very closely, the news and any changes in immigration law. 

Although this may or may not affect you, we, at OISS, are encouraging all international students and scholars to be extra diligent when travelling outside the United States.   If you plan to travel and return to the United States, please be sure you have a recent travel signature on your I20 or DS2019, be sure your passport is valid for 6 months into the future, and be sure that you carry your immigration documents in your carry on when re-entering the USA.  Following these procedures will help US Customs Officers facilitate your re-entry into the USA.  

The staff at OISS is here to help if you have any questions or concerns about travel or about current immigration laws affecting your visa.  Also, you can always find the most up to date information on our website:   For those of you who may feel overwhelmed or anxious by any of this, HPU’s Office of Counseling and Behavioral Health offers FREE and CONFIDENTIAL counseling services.  To make an appointment call (808) 687-7076 or stop in their office at UB 905.

In addition, OISS is posting on the hashtag #YouAreWelcomeHere, which is being used by universities and colleges across the country, to show support for international students and scholars.  Please follow us on Instagram @hpu_oiss and share your thoughts and photos with this hashtag!

In closing, I would like to remind everyone that HPU welcomes all international students and scholars, regardless of country of origin.  As part of our community you become part of the HPU Ohana.  Our Ohana embraces the values of Pono, Kuleana, and Aloha, meaning we treat everyone with respect and kindness and because of this we have an amazing diverse student body.

Please feel free to reach out to me or the staff of OISS, should you have any questions or concerns.


Warm Mahalo,



Bernard Chong


Office of International Students and Scholars

Hawai’i Pacific University

Get Started

Learn more about Visa requirements, pre- and post- arrival procedures, and more.

New Students

Resources for current students, including immigration information, travel, and more.

Current Students

Information on legally working in the United States.


Post-Completion OPT Workshop for Fall 2017

To attend an OPT Workshop, please email with the following information:

  • Your full name
  • HPU student ID number
  • Indicate which semester you are graduating (Fall 2017 ONLY)
  • Specify which workshop (date & time) you wish to attend (see chart below)

OISS will reply back to your email with confirmation that your registration to attend an OPT Workshop was successful.







13th, Wednesday

10 - 11 am

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


27th, Wednesday

10 - 11 am

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


11th, Wednesday

2 - 3 pm

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


25th, Wednesday

2 - 3 pm

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


8th, Wednesday

10 - 11 am

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


22nd, Wednesday

10 - 11 am

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


13th, Wednesday

2 - 3 pm

FS Conference Rm - 2nd Floor


Address for location of workshop: 1166 Fort Street Mall (FS) Conference Room - 2nd Floor

**Note: No food/drinks allowed in the Conference Room**

For more detailed information on Optional Practical Training, click here for more information.


International Students are not permitted to enroll in 8A/8B courses on military base or online courses. Exceptions for online courses will be made for extraordinary circumstances with a clearly stated rationale. For undergraduate students, these exceptions are approved by Academic Advising and Graduate student exceptions are approved by graduate coordinators and faculty advisors.

Immigration regulations limit the number of online courses a student can count towards full time requirement.

  • Undergraduate students must register for a minimum of 9 credit hours of in-class, plus 3 (or more) online credit hours.
  • Graduate students must register for a minimum of 6 credit hours of in-class, plus 3 (or more) online credit hours.


Immigration regulations require international students in F-1 status to register in full-time fall and spring semester.  Student are required to enroll in full-time course load throughout the semester. For immigration purposes, full-time enrollment is defined as (fall and spring semesters):






Twelve (12)

Three (3)


Nine (9)

Three (3)