University of Hawaiʻi — West Oʻahu



The study of English at UH West O‘ahu involves an analysis of literature using the vocabulary, theories and techniques of the field. Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities with a concentration in English will learn to identify and distinguish the genres in literature through which they will develop a greater understanding of world history and culture. Courses are offered in-class and through distance learning instruction.

English students often pursue a career in education. With a degree in English, graduates are well-prepared for the secondary school curriculum and to pursue Hawai‘i State Teacher certification. Beginning in fall 2010, students may choose to double major in Humanities with an English concentration and Education. This program will qualify students for certification by graduation.

For more information visit the English website


A bachelor’s degree in English prepares students for a variety of careers, including teaching, human resources, business, journalism, public relations, and politics. Graduates may go on to become attorneys, teachers, doctors, and business professionals.

The English curriculum encourages critical thinking and strong writing skills that are valuable in every profession. While enrolled in college, students in the English program often serve as student tutors in the UH West O'ahu No‘eau Center for Writing, Math and Academic Success and as teaching assistants and substitutes at local schools. The starting salary for a Hawai‘i public school teacher is $43,157 a year. Many career opportunities are available to English students who possess excellent communication skills and a broad general knowledge. In the business sector, English graduates are strong candidates for a variety of positions, with initial earnings between $40,000 and $60,000. For those students planning to further their education, a bachelor’s degree in English provides a strong background for many graduate and professional schools. The program curriculum is excellent preparation for law school, with graduates potentially earning over $100,000 a year.


ENG 372 Asian American Literature
This course is an examination of contemporary Asian American and Asian/Pacific American Literature. Various topics such as the treatment of the immigrant versus the national, language acquisition, and differences between Asian American and Asian/Pacific American will be covered.

ENG 386 Adolescent Literature
Concentrating on the novel and short fiction, this course surveys literature written for young adults. Prominent issues treated in the course include the coming-of-age story, diversity, and the relationship between adolescent literature and broad historical/social contexts such as the Enlightenment and Modernism.

ENG 445 Shakespeare
This course covers six to eight Shakespeare plays. Course will focus on live performance issues and consider filmed versions and live performances (when available). The selected plays will represent various genres and different historical points in Shakespeare’s work.

ENG 480 Contemporary Literature of the Pacific
This course surveys the new emerging English literature by native South Pacific Islanders from 1960-present. Emphasis on contemporary themes and issues in the novels, poetry, short stories, and essays from New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Fiji and other areas.


The UH West O‘ahu Humanities Club promotes arts and culture within the context of the campus and the community at large. Its specific objectives include support for senior projects in the Humanities, preparation for graduate school, and facilitation of local employment and internship opportunities. The Humanities Club also organizes activities that foster a sense of cohesion among UH West O‘ahu faculty and students, and provides a wonderful venue for an increased understanding of the study of Humanities and an opportunity to meet and learn from fellow students. Most recently, Humanities Club members traveled on a spring break trip to Paris, France, and have future plans to explore the mountainous country of Greece.


UH West O‘ahu English students have successfully completed internships at a variety of organizations including:

  • Holy Family Catholic School
  • Waipahu High School
  • Kahuku High School
  • Hawai‘i State Legislature


Dr. Brenda Machosky, Associate Professor
(808) 689-2346

Dr. Amy Nishimura, Associate Professor
(808) 689-2347

Dr. Carmen Nolte, Assistant Professor 
(808) 689-2345 

Dr. David Odhiambo, Assistant Professor 
(808) 689-2348 

Dr. Stanley Orr, Professor
(808) 689-2349

Dr. Yasmine Romero, Assistant Professor
(808) 689-2328

Dr. Natalie Syzmanski, Assistant Professor and Writing Program Administrator 
(808) 689-2390