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Washington Education and State Information

Washington State's population grew by five percent between 2010 and 2014 to more than 7 million residents, based on U.S. Census Bureau figures. Washington hosts nearly 80 nonprofit colleges and universities, including the University of Washington and Gonzaga University.

Information About Washington

Washington State is situated in the northwest corner of the continental U.S., immediately south of Canada and bordering the Pacific Ocean. Olympia is the state capital, but Seattle is the largest city, with more than 668,000 residents as of 2014. The Cascade Mountains run through the state from north to south, dividing it into two distinct regions; to the west of the mountains, the climate is temperate and oceanic, while to the east, it's dry and continental.

Washington State is known for its majestic forests, snow-clad mountains and rugged pacific coastline, as well as the calmer blue inland waters of Puget Sound. It also offers the vast and semi-desert lands of the interior and, further east, the Palouse and its rolling green hills.

Education in Washington

In 2016, U.S. News & World Report ranked the University of Washington in Seattle 52nd among national universities. The publication also recognized Whitman College in Walla Walla and the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma as the 40th and 72nd best national liberal arts colleges, respectively.

Washington also is home to several regionally ranked colleges and universities, including Northwest University in Kirkland, the 17th best regional college in the West, according to U.S. News. Universities regionally ranked within the Top 25 in the West include Gonzaga University in Spokane, Seattle University, Seattle Pacific University, Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma and Western Washington University in Bellingham.

Students seeking a 2-year school have various options to choose from, including Clark College in Vancouver, Edmonds Community College in Lynnwood, Spokane Falls Community College in Spokane and Green River Community College in Auburn.

Economy of Washington

Two of Washington's largest industries are trade, transportation, and utilities, and education and health services. Microsoft and Boeing both have a major presence in Bellevue and Mukilteo (north of Seattle), respectively. Washington is also well known for growing apples and for its fishing industry, while lumber, aircraft engines and parts, pears, soybeans, wheat, corn and potatoes are a few of its other major commodities.


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