Veterans, active duty members, and dependents wanting to start or go back to school may consider several 4-year public universities located in Washington State. The chart below will give more insight to college seekers wanting to earn a postsecondary degree while attending a military-friendly school.
|School Name||Institution Type||Location||In-State Tuition (2016-2017)*||Tuition Assistance/Military Benefits**|
|Cascadia College||4-year public||Bothell, Washington||$3,753||Cascadia Tuition Waiver and Veterans Exception, Veterans Resource Center, Academic Advising, Worker Retraining Program, Veterans Community Club, military credit|
|North Seattle College||4-year, public||Seattle, Washington||$3,819||Veteran Tuition Waivers, Active Duty Military/National Guard in-state tuition rates, Office of Veterans Services, military credit|
|Skagit Valley College||4-year public||Mount Vernon, Washington||$4,200||Veteran and Military Support Center, military education support, military credit|
|Western Washington University||4-year, public||Bellingham, Washington||$7,903||Student Veterans of Western Club, Veteran's Outreach Center, military credit|
|Washington State University||4-year, public||Pullman, Washington||$11,041||Veterans Center, Student Veterans Committee, Vet Corps Navigator, Academic Success and Career Center, VA mobile medical center, military credit|
Source: *National Center for Education Statistics; **School Websites
Overview of Military-Friendly Colleges in Washington State
These five Washington-based universities are known to provide resources to help the military community succeed in their educational pursuits. Services related to financial assistance, academic support, and social organizations are made available at most of the institutions listed. After reviewing these important factors, college-bound service members and veterans should be able to decide which military-friendly school makes for the best learning experience for them.
Cascadia College provides both a traditional and military-friendly environment to 3,434 undergraduates, according to enrollment stats from 2016. This university offers both on-campus and distance learning courses. Veterans who are WA state residents can qualify for a 25 percent tuition waiver, whereas dependents or spouses are eligible for up to a 100 percent waiver. There's also a non-resident exception for veterans that helps out-of-state students pay in-state tuition rates. The Worker Retraining Program supplies financial assistance to student-veterans who enroll in a technical training course. Cascadia also offers veteran-specific academic advising. On the more extracurricular side, the Veterans Community Club is available for individuals who are interested in being part of a social gathering, getting assistance with the transition to school, participating in team-building activities and promoting veteran leadership on campus.
North Seattle College
North Seattle College is ideal for military personnel who want to pursue an associate or bachelor's degree. At this military-friendly university, aspiring degree holders can take advantage of a few resources related to VA home-buying, work-study opportunities, and healthcare services. Staying in contact with the Office of Veterans Services keeps most students informed on the military benefits available at the college. Student-veterans can receive a limited tuition waiver, whereas active-duty members may qualify for in-state tuition rates if they're stationed in Washington. As of 2016, the school enrolled 6,266 undergraduate students while also providing distance learning courses to eligible applicants, including those who are military-connected.
Skagit Valley College
Skagit Valley College (SVC) offers students a 4-year experience through on-campus and distance learning programs. With a total student population just over 5,000, this college helps military members taking classes on-campus to find assistance through the Military Education and Veteran Services office. This office provides counseling, career help, and tuition assistance. Through the same service, the Veteran and Military Support Center can also be used by active duty personnel and former servicemen and women. Additionally, SVC advocates military education support through flexible and accommodating programs that help active duty members meet their advancement goals.
Western Washington University
Western Washington University is another option for college seekers who are veterans, dependents, or currently enlisted. Individuals who enroll in this military-friendly school may first want to learn about the Veteran's Outreach Center, which is a go-to spot for students seeking out information related to networking opportunities, social gatherings, and campus events. The center and its representatives are also there to help military personnel make a smooth transition into college life. The Student Veterans of Western Club is another support group where students and military supporters can form positive relationships. WWU enrolled more than 15,500 students in 2016, and every school year it provides distance education programs to both undergrad and graduate learners.
Washington State University
Washington State University's student body was 30,142 in 2016, which was made up of both civilian and military-affiliated students. Whether on campus or through a distance learning program, military students may be impressed by the number of resources the Veterans Center offers at this college. Once enrolled, students are welcomed to seek academic and personal support through several services, including the Academic Success and Career Center or VA mobile medical center. For those who are in need of a college family, becoming a member of the Student Veterans Committee may also help with networking and building friendships. Veterans can also seek out the Americorps Vet Corps Navigator, who is a fellow student trained to help veterans access services and resources and provide peer mentoring.