Skip to content
Reading time: 2 minutes
Limu on a hand
(Photo courtesy of UH Hawaiʻi Sea Grant)

Windward Community College has launched a free, limu (seaweed) culture pathway combining traditional Native Hawaiian knowledge with Western scientific methods, with classes beginning in the fall. The new agripharmatech certificate of achievement (CA) specializing in limu culture prepares students for emerging algal-based career opportunities in agricultural biotechnology, pharmacognosy, agribusiness entrepreneurship and plant-based manufacturing.

Two people wading in the water holding buckets
Collecting limu at the Waikalua Loko Iʻa

“These classes are a wonderful opportunity for students and community members to learn more about the importance of limu in Hawaiʻi. For those thinking about a career in agriculture or biomanufacturing, these classes are a great place to start,” said Jolie Dollar, Limu Center coordinator and instructor. “Our partnership with the Waikalua Loko fishpond, where limu is already being grown, is a bonus for students wanting coursework that combines Hawaiian traditional knowledge, ecological sustainability and food production.”

The limu culture track, which can be completed in two to three semesters, enables students to conduct research on critical limu-related topics, enhancing their knowledge of limu ecology and production. Students can also enroll in the limu studies certificate of competence, and earn credits that can be used for advancement to the limu culture CA.

Thanks to grants from the National Science Foundation’s Tribal Colleges and Universities Program (TCUP) and Carl D. Perkins Strengthening Career and Technical Education, all classes within the limu culture CA program will be tuition-free. A tuition waiver will be automatically applied once students register for the limu culture classes. Students must apply to Windward CC and receive an acceptance email before registering.

The U.S. is experiencing a growing demand for skilled algae workers, with more than 11,500 projected jobs nationally, offering salaries exceeding $40,000 annually, according to an Algae Technology Education Consortium survey. Hawaiʻi‘s unique environment makes it a prime location for algae-related employment, with around 5,000 job opportunities in algae cultivation, harvesting and processing, and another 5,000 positions in algal biomanufacturing and fermentation.

For more details about the Limu Culture pathway, contact Dollar at (808) 236-9245 or

Round structures of algae
Algae under the microscope
Back To Top