Born and raised in Honolulu, Helen Cox has served higher education for over 35 years, first as a faculty member and then as an administrator at Salt Lake Community College prior to becoming Chancellor at Kaua‘i Community College in 2008. While away from the islands, she received a B.A. from Harvard and an M.A. and a PhD in American Studies from University of Utah.
Helen is founder and Executive Director of Human Pursuits, a non-profit corporation funded in part through National Endowment for the Humanities grants to develop and implement reading and discussion programs for out-of-school adults in libraries, senior centers, prisons and other settings in the Rocky Mountain West.
She has had the good fortune to work internationally in China, India, and Japan, and served as a Fulbright Scholar in both the Czech Republic and Russia. Cox’s leadership at KCC focuses on the College’s roles to support the community through education and training, to serve as an intellectual and cultural gathering place, and to provide leadership in moving the island towards a culturally, economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable future.
Dr. Helen A. Cox
Chancellor, Kaua'i Community College
Spring semester is drawing to a close here at Kaua‘i Community College and what a wonderful year it has been! We have been busy making sure that students have the support and instruction they need from the time they arrive until they move on to jobs or a four-year degree. Soon students, faculty and staff will be busy with summer courses and preparing for the upcoming academic year. Summer term runs from June 12 through July 25, and fall semester begins on August 20 and ends December 14. Summer classes include courses in Accounting, Biology, Chemistry, English, Hawaiian Studies, History, Math, Philosophy and Psychology. We also offer a College Success course in the summer, to help students learn how o be a successful college student. And this year, students may use their federal financial aid to pay for summer courses that move them forward toward completion. Fall registration is underway now, and you can see a complete list of classes being offered by clicking on Class Availability on our home page.
In addition to face-to-face daytime classes, the College offers the ability to earn an Associates of Arts in Liberal Arts attending only in the evening. This cohort approach is designed for working adults who want to complete a degree while not giving up work. We also offer numerous courses taught via distance, and we now offer Prior Learning Assessment. If you have work experience that you believe is equivalent to college-level work, you may be able to earn up to 48 credits if your learning experience matches requirements for courses taught at the college. In addition to making higher education more accessible to adults, we have expanded Early College to multiple offerings at all three public high schools. Early College is a great way for high school students to earn college credit before they graduate and discover that they truly are "college material."
Whether you are 15 or 75, we know that coming to college can be daunting at first, so we are here to help. We provide new student orientation, academic advising, an introduction to college class, tutoring and more. Your first meeting with a counselor helps you set your academic plan, and our STAR GPS registration platform guides you to enroll in the courses that lead you to reach your goal.
We want college to be relevant for you! One way to do that is to link your coursework and research to the community you care about and the career you seek. This summer we are starting an Innovation Center. Projects are faculty-led and teach interdisciplinary skills that students need while also engaging them in addressing community issues. So every project includes faculty, students, and a community partner. For example, our apiary is breeding docile queen bees that disease resistant, which is extremely important since bees are critical to pollination. A second example is our Tiny House, built by students across construction disciplines to demonstrate low-cost, high value living space.
Kaua‘i Community College offers small classes with competent, caring instructors in a place- and project-based environment. Come check us out to see how we can help you get to where you want to go!