DMHA Summer Institute

The Summer Institute is designed for post-baccalaureate and graduate students with interests in a range of fields that are complemented by the content and culture of disaster management. The Institute gives students the opportunity to deeply investigate the methods and theories of the field and connect with faculty, practitioners, and a diverse cohort.  Hawaii is uniquely situated to enhance the exploration of and give perspective on the most pressing issues related to disasters and resiliency.

The Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance (DMHA) certificate is a 16-credit program that provides an academic course of study aimed at building disaster risk reduction competence and professionalism.  The courses are 3 credits each and consist of 40 hours of intensive class time.  The program provides interdisciplinary perspectives on hazards, disasters and risk reduction with focused coursework and seminars.

Capstone Requirement

The capstone requirement is accomplished by enrollment in a one unit directed study, performing a relevant project that integrates the knowledge and experience of your DMHA course of study.  This can be relevant work or a service learning project, fieldwork or research, or the production of a publishable paper. This research can be done anywhere, but the materials must be submitted by July 31st.

Summer 2015 Course Offerings:

PLAN 414 Building Community Resilience (3)
MW 1:30-5:15p 7/06-08/14/2015
Poya Harirchi

Intended to give you a good understanding of the natural forces behind the most common natural disasters, and the human actions that reduce or increase vulnerability to natural disasters. A-F only. Junior standing or higher. (Spring only) (Cross-listed as GEOG 414)

PLAN 473: GIS for Community Planning  (3)
MWF 9:00-12:00p 5/26-7/02/2015
Jiwnath Ghimire
Introduces students to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for urban and regional planning. Students will learn the basic concepts and principles, and practical skills of GIS through lectures, discussions, and labs. Repeatable one time. Junior standing or higher.

PLAN 672 Humanitarian Assistance: Principles, Practices and Politics (3)
TR 5:00-8:30p 7/06-8/14/2015
James Campbell, PhD

Combined lecture/discussion aimed at understanding the theoretical basis and working structure of humanitarian assistance programs and international responses to natural and human-induced disasters. Pre: 670 or consent. (Once a year)

DMHA Summer Institute 2014

Learning from Disasters: Perspectives from the US and Indonesia

The University of Hawaii, at Manoa Department of Urban and Regional (DURP), through Partnerships with Indonesian Universities kicked off workshops in Bandung, Indonesia. Partnering with Professors at the Bandung Institute of Technology (ITB) the workshop aims to deliver trainings to a group of regional planners and practitioners from local governments, Disaster management agencies, NGOs, and academics. Building on the model developed from DURP’s Disaster Management and Humanitarian Assistance Certificate program and partnering with the FEMA-funded National Disaster Preparedness Training Center (NDPTC), USAID has supported the Indonesia and US partnership over the next three years to develop targeted trainings and share lessons learned in order to enhance capacity to prepare, manage, and better plan for disasters.

To view a journal of the trip by the DURP Faculty in June 2014, click here.

Application Process
To apply for admission, there is a two-step process. The first involves the Graduate Division, and the second deals directly with the Department of Urban and Regional Planning.
First, submit the following materials directly to the Graduate Division:

  1. Application for Graduate Admission online at:
  2. One official copy of transcript(s)
  3. If a non-native English-speaking applicant, an official report of the TOEFL or IELTS scores

Second, submit a DMHA Admissions Assessment Form and the Express Information Form to the admissions committee of the Department of Urban and Regional Planning. Lastly, submit two letters of reference from persons well acquainted with the applicant’s academic work and/or professional experience.
The forms can be found at the Graduate Admissions Forms Page.

Admission Questions:
Email Program Coordinator: