Early College Programs

High School Students on campus for orientation

Deadlines to Apply:  MAY 1 for Fall or Summer |  NOVEMBER 15 for Spring

Earn college credits in high school! Leeward offers several ways for you to get started on your college education while you're still in high school. Look over some of the details on the programs to see which one fits your needs.

Be sure to talk to your high school guidance counselor in advance of the deadlines...so you and your family will have enough time to complete the paperwork!

Before applying to an Early College Program:

  • Contact your high school counselor about the different early college programs (details below!).
  • Discuss the program you are interested in with your parent or legal guardian.

Please keep in mind that each program varies in eligibility requirements and procedures. See the details for each Early College Program.

Early College Program Details

RS Open to public high school Juniors and Seniors who are academically accomplished or vocationally gifted. Open to public high school Juniors and Seniors who are academically accomplished or vocationally gifted. Running Start is a statewide program that provides the opportunity for students to enroll in University of Hawaii college and community college courses. The classes are offered on the college campuses. Students get credit in both high school and college.

The unique partnership between the Hawaii State Department of Education and the University of Hawaii System allows public and charter high school students to attend college classes during the fall, spring, and summer while earning both high school and college credits. Any public high school and charter school student considered to be eligible and meets campus admissions requirements within the state of Hawaiʻi who: is under the age of 21 as of September 1st of the school year in which the college course is taken.

EA Open to public or private high school Juniors and Seniors who are academically, artistically, or vocationally accomplished. To enroll as an Early Admission student, you must meet all the following conditions:

  1. be currently enrolled in high school
  2. be in good academic standing
  3. course taken is limited to courses not available at the high school
  4. have the high school approval

Early Admit for Home Schooled Students
Academically, artistically, or vocationally accomplished home schooled applicants, 15 years of age or older, and not currently enrolled in a public, private, charter, or independent high school may be considered for admission to Leeward Community College’s Home Schooled Early Admission Program.


Open to public high school Seniors at participating schools who are interested in CTE programs. Students will spend their Senior year at Leeward CC as a full-time student in the CTE program of their choice.

Jump Start is a program that allows public high school seniors to enroll full-time in career and technical education programs at participating Community Colleges.

Students earn high school credit for college courses they successfully complete during their senior year. Students can also still participate in their high school co-curricular activities such as sports, clubs, band, prom, and special committees.

What is the purpose of the Jump Start program?
The Jump Start program has been established to provide career and technical education opportunities to high school students whose interests are not currently being served by their high school.

Jump Start students will enroll full-time (12 or more credits) per semester, in a program that leads to a CTE-related Associate's degree or Certificate of Achievement and successfully complete one year of credits at the end of their high school senior year.

What are the advantages of participating in the Jump Start program?
The program offers dual credit to the participating high school students. For each community college course students successfully complete, students will earn high school credit toward graduation while working towards a college degree or certificate.


Memorandum-of-Agreement (MOA)
Open to high school students at participating schools who wish to take college courses at their high school campus. Please contact your high school counselor in order to determine if your high school is participating, and how to get enrolled.

Tuition: All college expenses (tuition, books, lab fees, transportation, etc.) are the responsibility of the Early College student, however, some students may be eligible for various types of financial assistance. Students should inquire with their high school counselors to see if any financial assistance is available.

High School Counselors: For more information, please refer to the Early College Programs Chart (pdf).

Early College Program Contacts
Please contact your College and Career Counselor at your high school for Early College information.