University of Hawaii at Manoa - William S. Richardson School of Law campus


Acceptance Rate
Average Undergrad GPA
Accepted Applicants Who Attend

Test Scores

151 - 158


Application Deadlines
February 1

Application Process

Rolling Admissions

Application Fee

LSDAS Service Used

Applicants accepted in terms other than fall

Transfer Applicants Accepted

Deferred Admission

Other Admission Factors


LSAT Score
Undergraduate GPA
Essay / Personal Statement

Selectivity Rating

Faculty Information

Students Say

Located in beautiful Hawaii, the William S. Richardson School of Law is a “regional law school” where students “have access to some of the best faculty in the field.” Manoa is known for its “small student body” and “very accessible faculty.” Students praise the “collaborative nature of the students and faculty.” At Manoa “students are seen as valid contributors to the school and are given broad range to explore and introduce new topics in the field of law.” Students appreciate the “large selection of moot court teams to participate in” and the “tight-knit community on the islands,” which “allows for amazing access to professionals in the field, such as the judges, big law firms, and politicians.”
Being “part of the law school is being part of a family for life,” says one student. “We all feel welcomed into the Hawaii legal community from the first day of 1L orientation,” says one student. And one of the greatest strengths of the school is the way in which “students in each class support each other. As one student notes, “even ‘gunners’ are polite and helpful to others.” Unlike at so-called “cut-throat schools,” at Manoa, “aggressive behavior and sabotage are frowned upon and generally do not happen.”
The professors “are all well-versed in their fields” and “active practitioners and scholars.” Most teachers “are more than willing to speak with you,” and “have open door policies,” although not all may not be willing to “engage in mentor-style relationships.” While some students rave about the faculty, others wish there were more “heavy hitters” since students “need strong recommenders when they come from lesser known institutions.” Given Manoa’s “geographic location, however, [it has] some of the finest environmental law professors,” and “prestigious guest lecturers and speakers are prevalent because no one minds coming to Hawaii.” In courses for specialized fields, the “teacherto-student ratio is very favorable,” sometimes “less than 1:10.” The school has a “vibrant international LLM program, which allows law students from all over the globe to collaborate and exchange ideas.” There is a “heightened focus on ASEAN through the ASEAN Law Integration Center,” “China, Japan, and Korea through [the] Pacific Asian Law and Society Certificate,” as well as the “Pacific Asian Law and Society Organization” and the “Asia Pacific Law and Policy Journal.” Manoa also features “numerous moot court teams,” and “they all do extremely well on a national level (especially [the] Jessup team).” As a 2L notes, “If you want to make changes in the world, this is the law school to come to.”
The “administration is wonderful” and “supportive of each student’s success and career path.” Externships, internships, and jobs are “numerous and relatively easy to procure.” It’s extremely “easy to get involved” and “networking is very important to the administration and students, so networking events are very common.” The “larger legal community [of Hawaii] is actively involved with our education,” notes one student. And “lawyers and judges regularly provide guidance and opportunities for [Manoa] students.”

Career overview

Pass Rate for First-Time Bar Exam
Median Starting Salary
% of graduates who are employed within ten months of graduation
% of job accepting graduates providing useable salary information

Career Services

On campus summer employment recruitment for first year JD students

On campus summer employment recruitment for second year JD students

# of Employers that Recruit on Campus Each Year

Employers who most frequently hire graduates
Hawai`i State Judiciary; Office of the Prosecuting Attorney; Public Defenders Office; Ashford & Wriston; Bays Deaver et al; Cades Schutte; Carlsmith Ball; Goodsill Anderson Quinn & Stifel; McCorriston Miller et al; Starn O'Toole Marcus & Fisher; Kobayashi, Sugita & Goda; Imanaka Asato.

Graduates Employed by Area

Private Practice

Graduates Employed by Region

Prominent Alumni

John Waihee
former Governor of Hawaii

Sabrina McKenna
Associate Justice, Hawaii Supreme Court

Alexa Fujise
Associate Judge, Hawai`i Intermediate Court of Appeals

James Duke Aiona
former Lieutenant Governor, State of Hawai`i

Junichi Yanagihara
COO & Executive Producer, Sprite Animation Studios


Financial Aid Rating
Mar 1
Application Deadlines
Mar 2

Financial Aid Statistics

Average Annual Total Aid Package Awarded

% Students Receiving Some Aid

Direct Lender

Expenses per Academic Year

In-State Tuition
Out-Of-State Tuition
Estimated On-Campus Room and Board
Estimated Off-Campus Room and Board
Estimated Cost for Books / Academic Expense

Student Body Profile

Total Enrollment
Parent Institution Enrollement

Number of Foreign Countries Represented
Average Age at Entry

% Out-of-State
% International


% Under-represented Minorities

76% are full time
24% are part time
51% female
49% male

Campus Life

Students Say

Students at Manoa have access to all the beauty of Hawaii, from the mainland to beaches and neighboring islands. Island life does have some drawbacks, including slow Internet access. But even though some students bemoan the slow Internet, others note that they “have a very decent computer lab that always has open computers,” and “good law librarians who are always willing to help.” As one student says, “what we lack in terms of facilities and diversity we make up for in community, support and opportunity.” Students feel close to each other here. Everyone at Manoa “recognizes that they’re in it together,” “not just in school but in the small law community of Hawaii after graduation.” The “cohorts are very tight” and they “make it a point to look out for each other.”

More Information

% of Classrooms with Internet Access

Admissions Office Contact

Elisabeth Steele Hutchison
Direcotr of Admissions

2515 Dole Street
Honolulu, HI 96822-2350

(808) 956-5557