Washington State Trade Schools with Program Overviews

Washington is home to over 30 schools offering education in occupational trades. Compare these colleges in Washington State to determine which schools might be right for you.

Washington state has several options for those wishing to enter into a trade school. Learn about various factors to inform your decision, such as closeness to schools from colleges, largest student populations, lowest net tuition costs, and highest graduation rates provided by the National Center for Education Statistics.

Washington Schools Closest to Large Cities

Closeness to a large city is beneficial for many college students, as it allows them to experience life and interact with people outside their campus. In Washington, very few trade schools are located within large cities; in fact, the only large city available is Seattle, according to the NCES classification. The three trade schools within Seattle are:

  • Seattle Central College
  • South Seattle College
  • Seattle Vocational Institute

Largest Schools in Washington

Large campus size is appealing to many people looking to attend college. Many students enjoy the increased opportunities for socialization and activities provided compared to smaller schools. These are the five schools the NCES cites as having the largest student population in fall of 2014.

  • Clark College (10,911 students)
  • Spokane Community College (9,974 students)
  • Edmonds Community College (8,993 students)
  • Green River College (7,915 students)
  • Everett Community College (7,516 students)

Lowest Net Price

Few students are fortunate enough to pursue a postsecondary education without considering its impact on their wallets. Financial aid programs offered through schools and government agencies are designed to reduce the monetary burden placed on students, but they still may leave some academic expenses uncovered. According to the National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), the schools below had the lowest 2014-2015 net prices for full-time undergraduates.

  • Seattle Vocational Institute ($2,199)
  • Seattle Central College ($3,783)
  • Bellingham Technical College ($4,420)
  • Spokane Community College ($4,842)
  • Northwest Indian College ($5,665)

Highest Graduation Rate

Of the profiled schools, the colleges that follow have the highest graduation rates, according to NCES figures. Data on full-time undergrads who enrolled at the institutions and graduated within 150% of normal time (e.g., three years or less for an associate's degree) was used to determine the stats. Greater graduation rates are indicative of a higher-quality educational experience. These are the top five schools in Washington by graduation rate.

  • Perry Technical Institute (78% for those enrolled in 2012)
  • Seattle Vocational Institute (56% for those enrolled in 2012-2013)
  • Renton Technical College (56% for those enrolled in 2009)
  • Walla Walla University (52% for those enrolled in 2009)
  • Bellingham Technical College (46% for those enrolled in 2012)

For those wishing to attend a Washington state trade school, there are several factors to keep in mind when making your decision, such as highest graduation rates, lowest net tuition, closeness to major cities, and largest campus populations.

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