Opened in 1955 for Catholic students, Chaminade has since expanded into one of the most diverse student bodies for higher learning institutions in the United States. The university is based in Honolulu, the capital and social centre of the Pacific islands state of Hawaii. Honolulu is also the site of an international airport, allowing for convenient travel to the American mainland and around the globe. Chaminade has officially titled itself as a university since 1977, when graduate studies became available.
Incoming freshman studying full time at Chaminade campus can choose from one of nineteen four year programmes, for instance English (Literature) or Business Administration, which is also one of the four 2 year associate degree programmes available. Some undergraduate programmes come with a tight course plan that students should adhere to, such as Forensic Sciences or Accounting. Others such as Historical and Political Studies will be more flexible, students able to take modules from a wide variety of disciplines. There are also nineteen minors available to study, from accounting to sociology.
Some facilities at Chaminade are the School of Nursing, which contains a simulation facility and two nursing skills centres with sixteen beds, and the ten multipurpose teaching labs of Henry Hall. The 30,000 ft Sullivan Library was opened in 2008, and contains more than 70,000 print books.
Athletics teams at Chaminade are known as the Silverswords, after the flower which grows on the Hawaiian volcanic mountains. The university competes in the NCAA Division II level as a member of the Pacific West Conference, and fields teams such as basketball, cross country, golf, and soccer for men, and basketball, cross country, soccer, softball, tennis, and volleyball for women.
There is a dedicated Office Of Native Hawaiian Partnerships on campus to ensure a continuing strong relationship with the local community, and Chaminade also offers a minor in Hawaiian and Pacific Studies.