Bachelor of Applied Science

Health Professions


The Health Professions concentration offers students a focused, effective start to a career in healthcare. The curriculum includes courses in natural sciences, social sciences, and liberal arts, as well as application-based coursework in healthcare.

Students can choose to specialize in one of several plans of study including pre-physical/occupational therapy, pre-pharmacy, or pre-med. Specializations allow the student to follow a clear career path and fulfill potential prerequisites necessary for graduate and/or professional school in medicine and health sciences. Students interested in graduate school in medicine, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and physician assistant studies may opt to follow a pre-health focus, which includes courses required for entrance into graduate school.

Graduates are prepared for entry-level career opportunities in healthcare and health-related services or for entry into graduate and professional programs.

Students who successfully complete the program will be certified in CPR/AED and First Aid, trained in Bloodborne pathogen safety, and will be eligible to apply to take the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) examination.

Learning Outcomes

Graduates with a concentration in Health Professions from UH West Oʻahu will be able to:

  • Explain the foundational biological principles and the concepts of chemistry, physics, and math as they apply to the study of human health and disease.
  • Apply health science research and quantitative analysis to critically analyze, monitor, and assess the health status of individuals relevant to improving health.
  • Infuse Native Hawaiian values and culture into concepts of patient care and professionalism to articulate an understanding of cultural differences.
  • Work as part of a team to integrate and apply concepts in the health sciences into class activities, group projects and clinical/community experiences.

Internships / Practicums

Potential internships/practicum sites include hospitals, healthcare clinics, private physician offices, physical therapy clinics, long-term care facilities (i.e. nursing facilities, sub-acute facilities, and assisted living) and community-based services (i.e. hospice, home care, and adult day care centers).

Careers and Earning Potential

Health professions is one of the fastest growing career areas in Hawaiʻi. According to the Hawaiʻi Industry Sector website, there is a projected increase in jobs from 2018-2027 showing growth in physical therapy (17 percent), occupational therapy (17 percent), and physician assistant (19 percent) fields. Additionally, the need for healthcare support staff is increasing. As demonstrated by data from, health science careers occupies seven out of the top 10 fastest growing jobs in Hawaiʻi. This information is supported by the State of Hawaiʻi Employment Projections for Industries and Occupations, with projections that show health care and social assistance careers will experience sizable growth of 17.52 percent from 2016 to 2026, with two out of the top three occupational groups advancing the fastest during this time related to the health field.

Students who decide to enter the work force immediately after graduation will be qualified for a variety of careers including positions as a health education specialist, medical equipment/pharmaceutical sales representative, community health specialists, health and patient educator, Healthy Start coordinator, home health care coordinator, health and wellness coordinator, and school health and program specialist.

For more information on careers and earning potential, visit the Hawaiʻi Industry Sectors website.