VNR: 50 years of College Opportunities Program opening doors for motivated students

University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa
Brent Suyama, (808) 956-8856
UH Spokesman, UH Communications
Posted: Aug 30, 2019

Link to video and sound (details below):

WHAT: The College Opportunities Program (COP) is a free, six-week intensive summer course that gives students a second chance to gain the skills necessary to enroll at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa.

WHO:  Hawaiʻi high school graduates who want to enroll at UH Mānoa, but do not meet the minimum requirements (academic, financial, social support) for admission.

WHERE:  UH Mānoa

WHEN:  Summer 2019

HOW:  Participants are required to live on the UH Mānoa campus and enroll in classes focused on upgrading academic and social skills. COP is an introduction to college life and its expectations, and provides counseling and support to acclimate the students. Those who successfully complete the COP program are admitted to UH Mānoa for the fall semester.  

WHY: COP was established in 1970 as a federally-funded project aimed at recruiting residents from Waiʻanae, Nānākuli, Kālihi and Pālama to pursue a postsecondary education. In 1973, the Hawaiʻi State Legislature opened the COP program to residents throughout the state. 


  • The program is celebrating its 50th year of helping students, with about 3,800 successfully entering UH Mānoa in that time.
  • Approximately 95 percent of students pass the COP summer course and are admitted to UH Mānoa

  • The entire 2019 COP summer class (61 students) successfully completed the program and will enter UH Mānoa in the fall

  • In commemoration of COP's 50 years, Central Pacific Bank Foundation committed $50,000 to provide scholarships for students in the program.  

  • More about COP at UH Mānoa:

  • UH News story:

Link to video and sound:

BROLL:  (1 minute 34 seconds)

0:00-0:40: 7 clips: COP students in the classroom
0:40-0:58: 3 clips: students outdoors UH Mānoa
0:58-1:04: photos of COP graduates
1:04-1:22: 3 photos: COP in the classroom
1:22- 1:28: group shot of 2019 COP students
1:28-1:34: group shot of 1975 COP students

Cody Retuta, COP student (9 seconds)

So far, the COP program has helped with my confidence in college, cleared up a whole bunch of my doubts and above all, it’s been a good program.

Emelie Ogata-Tambua, COP student (4 seconds)
The number one thing I wanted was the support, like a family.

Emelie Ogata-Tambua, COP student (6 seconds)
So I decided to come to UH for the COP program so I could gain a family here.