Best Community Colleges in Washington State

Our list of the best community colleges in Washington State is a definitive guide to finding a college that is suitable for you.
Click to learn more about Unmudl and Amazon Original Course Enroll Now in the Unmudl Amazon Original Courses

Washington, also known as "The Evergreen State," is a state in the Pacific Northwest region of the Western United States. According to a new report by the U.S. News and World Report, Washington is ranked as the overall best state in the country, a sign that Washington might be a great fit for many students.

Famous for its geological diversity, Washington has a variety of scenic sights, ranging from mountains to deserts, coastlines, and rainforests. Aside from all of Washington's natural beauty, the state also ranks fourth in the country in terms of education. In Washington, there are currently over 38 community colleges serving 187,925 students!

Deciding which community college to study at can be an overwhelming process. To help you get a better understanding of your choices, we have compiled a list of some of the best community colleges in Washington State. Please note that these are not ranked in any particular order.

Want to earn credits towards a degree?

Unmudl offers many courses that can help you earn college credits!

Enroll Now in the Unmudl Amazon Original CoursesEnroll Now in the Unmudl Amazon Original Courses

Washington State Community Colleges Overview

Popular fields to pursue in Washington State

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Technologies 
  • Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods 
  • Business/Commerce, General 

The average tuition fee for community colleges in Washington State

  • Approximately $4,058 per year for in-state students 
  • Approximately $7,211 for out-of-state students

Undergraduate enrollment rates

  • According to research by the College Board, approximately 150,000 students enroll in Public Two-Year institutions in Florida.

Interested in free community college? Check out our full guide here! 

Bellevue College

Highlights:

Top Fields of Study

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions 
  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research And Clinical Nursing

Degrees With The Highest Salaries 

  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree - $65,974
  • Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions - Associate's Degree - $64,990
  • Computer Programming - Associate's Degree - $47,260

Fact

Bellevue College (BC) has an Academic Success Center that offers writing, reading, speaking, and ESL/ELL workshops for all students and staff at BC. 

Location

Bellevue College is a public community college located in Bellevue, Washington. With a population of 150,364, Bellevue is the 5th largest city in Washington and the 176th largest city in the United States.

Some of the largest businesses found in Bellevue include T-Mobile US, PACCAR, and Expedia Group.

Demographic

“The Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (ODEI) primary function at Bellevue College is a cultural commitment to inclusion. We understand the root causes of inequity and disrupt behaviors that sustain systems of power through continuous learning and collaborative practices. We are responsible for compliance with policies covering discrimination, harassment, accommodations, equal opportunity, and prevention.”

  • 38% White
  • 16% Asian
  • 11% Hispanic
  • 11% Two or more races
  • 10% Non-resident alien
  • 8% Unknown
  • 5% Black

Weather

Summers in Bellevue are short, warm, dry, while winters are extremely cold, rainy, and cloudy. The temperature normally ranges from 37°F to 79°F throughout the year, rarely falling below 27°F or going over 88°F.

Campus location

The main BC campus is located at 3000 Landerholm Cir Se, Bellevue, WA 98007-6484. 

Attractions/Places to visit

Bellevue is considered to be one of the best places to live in the US. The city is home to some amazing historic attractions, scenic sights, parks, museums, and outdoor activities!

Click here for a complete list of things to do and places to visit in (State Name)!

Top fields of study

Bellevue has an “open-door” policy which means that the acceptance rate is 100%. BC is the third-largest institution of higher education in Washington with over 32,000 students annually. 

Keep reading to find out the complete details for the top three programs. 

Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $32,213
  • Monthly Earnings- $2,684
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $10,999
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $105
Number Of Graduates  
  • 1445

Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $64,990
  • Monthly Earnings- $5,416
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $18,800
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $179
Number Of Graduates  
  • 86

Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $65,974
  • Monthly Earnings- $5,498
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $21,453
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $205
Number Of Graduates  
  • 59

Cost and financial aid

Average annual cost 

The average annual cost of studying at Bellevue is $7,870, as of 2021. Cost includes tuition, living costs, books and supplies, and fees (not including the average grants and scholarships for federal financial aid recipients).

Financial Aid 

Bellevue College offers financial aid in the form of grants, loans, scholarships, veterans’ benefits, and Work-Study jobs. Click here to learn more about their financial aid program.

Graduation rate & salary

Graduation Rate 

Out of 21,848 students:

  • 40% graduated
  • 35% withdrew
  • 23% transferred
  • 1% still enrolled

Salary 

The salary of Bellevue graduates is determined by their field of study. The estimate ranges from $32,213 - $65,974

Student Body

There are over 6,168 undergraduate students at Bellevue, with 53% of them being full-time students and 47% being part-time. 

Guide: How To Apply For Community College (And Why You Should)

Everett Community College

Highlights:

Top Fields of Study

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
  • Health and Medical Administrative Services
  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research And Clinical Nursing

Degrees With The Highest Salaries 

  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree - $68,422
  • Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services - Associate's Degree - $37,568
  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree - $30,870

Fact

Everett Community College (ECC) enrolls over 19,000 students annually at its various campuses in Snohomish County. 

Location

Everett Community College is a community college in Everett, Snohomish County, Washington. With a population of 112,249, Everett is the 7th largest city in Washington and the 269th largest city in the United States.

Some of the largest businesses found in Everett include Fortive, Jamco America, and Fluke Corporation

Demographic

  • 57% White
  • 13% Hispanic
  • 8% Two or more races
  • 7% Asian
  • 7% Unknown
  • 3% Black
  • 3% Non-resident alien
  • 1% American Indian/Alaska Native

Weather

Summers in Everett are short and warm, while winters are extremely cold, rainy, and predominantly cloudy. The temperature normally ranges from 36°F to 77°F throughout the year, rarely falling below 26°F or going over 87°F.

Campus location

The main ECC campus is located at 2000 Tower St, Everett, WA 98201, USA

Attractions/Places to visit

Everett is best known for its art and culture. The city is home to several aviation museums, local farms, and world-class theaters. Some must-visit locations in Everett include the infamous Angel of the Winds Event Center and the Boeing Factory. 

Click here for a complete list of things to do and places to visit in Everett!

Top fields of study

ECC offers associate’s degrees in Arts and Sciences, Science, Business, Applied Science, Technical Arts, Fine Arts, and General Studies. 

Certificates of completion are awarded in more than 30 technical and career fields. The college also offers General Education Development programs and professional and employee training. 

Keep reading to find out the complete details for the top three programs. 

Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing

  • Median Earnings- $30,870
  • Monthly Earnings- $2,573

Financial Aid & Debt

  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $8,250
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $79

Number Of Graduates  

  • 817

Health and Medical Administrative Services - Undergraduate Certificate or Diploma

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $19,455
  • Monthly Earnings- $1,621
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $11,000
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $105
Number Of Graduates  
  • 163

Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $68,422
  • Monthly Earnings- $5,702
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $15,702
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $150
Number Of Graduates  
  • 108

Cost and financial aid

Average annual cost 

The average annual cost of studying at ECC is $7,601, as of 2021. Cost includes tuition, living costs, books and supplies, and fees (not including the average grants and scholarships for federal financial aid recipients)

Financial Aid 

ECC offers financial aid in the form of scholarships, loans, and grants. Click here to learn more about their financial aid program.

Graduation rate & salary

Graduation Rate 

Out of 23,958 students

  • 32% graduated
  • 40% withdrew
  • 27% transferred
  • 1% still enrolled

Salary 

The salary of ECC graduates is determined by their field of study. The estimate ranges from $19,455 - $68,422

Student Body

There are over 5,497 undergraduate students at ECC, with 57% of them being full-time students and 43% being part-time. 

Pierce College-Puyallup

Highlights:

Top Fields of Study

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing
  • Business/Commerce, General 

Degrees With The Highest Salaries 

  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree - $47,260
  • Computer Systems Networking and Telecommunications - Associate's Degree - $38,289
  • Business Administration, Management and Operations - Associate's Degree - $32,569

Fact

Pierce College (PC) was named a finalist for the Aspen Prize for Community College Excellence two years consecutively (2019 and 2021)

Location

Pierce College-Puyallup is a public community college located in Puyallup, Washington. With a population of 43,379, Puyallup is the 27th largest city in Washington and the 899th largest city in the United States

Some of the largest businesses found in Puyallup include SEFNCO Communications, Chief Leschi School, and Korum Automotive.

Demographic

“Graduates demonstrate self-efficacy in intercultural engagement to advance equity, diversity, and inclusion through reflections and expressions of cultural humility, empathy, and social and civic engagement and action. Further, graduates examine how identities/positionalities such as races, social classes, genders, sexual orientations, disabilities, and cultures impact perceptions, actions, and the distribution of power and privilege in communities, systems, and institutions.”

  • 52% White
  • 16% Hispanic
  • 12% Two or more races
  • 6% Asian
  • 6% Black
  • 5% Unknown
  • 1% Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander
  • 1% Non-resident alien
  • Weather

Summers in Puyallup are short, dry, and warm, whereas winters are extremely cold, rainy. The temperature normally ranges from 36°F to 80°F throughout the year, rarely falling below 26°F or going over 90°F.

Campus location

The main PC campus is located at 9401 Farwest Dr. Sw, Puyallup, WA 98498-1999 

Attractions/Places to visit

Puyallup is an agriculturally-rich region best known for its fresh farm produce and Northwest cuisine. The city is home to some stunning flower fields and huge state fairs.

Click here for a complete list of things to do and places to visit in Puyallup!

Top fields of study

PC-Puyallup offers over 32 associate's degrees, 48 certificate programs, and 5 applied bachelor's degrees in a variety of different fields. 

Keep reading to find out the complete details for the top three programs. 

Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $25,405
  • Monthly Earnings- $2,117
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $9,500
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $91
Number Of Graduates  
  • 554

Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $47,260
  • Monthly Earnings- $3,938
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $19,000
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $181
Number Of Graduates  
  • 29

Business/Commerce, General - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $29,685
  • Monthly Earnings- $2,474
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $9,500
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $91
Number Of Graduates  
  • 15

Cost and financial aid

Average annual cost 

The average annual cost of studying at PC-Puyallup is $9,748, as of 2021. Cost includes tuition, living costs, books and supplies, and fees (not including the average grants and scholarships for federal financial aid recipients)

Financial Aid 

PC-Puyallup offers financial aid in the form of scholarships, grants, loans, and student employment. Click here to learn more about their financial aid program.

Graduation rate & salary

Graduation Rate 

Out of 9,220 students:

  • 24% graduated
  • 28% withdrew
  • 47% transferred
  • 1% still enrolled

Salary 

The salary of PC-Puyallup graduates is determined by their field of study. The estimate ranges from $25,194 - $47,260

Student Body

There are over 3,845 undergraduate students at PC-Puyallup, with 41% of them being full-time students and 59% being part-time. 

Spokane Community College

Highlights:

Top Fields of Study

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions 
  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research And Clinical Nursing

Degrees With The Highest Salaries 

  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree - $65,983
  • Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions - Associate's Degree - $62,409
  • Electromechanical Instrumentation and Maintenance Technologies/Technicians - Associate's Degree - $44,942

Fact

Spokane Community College (SCC) is not only one of the state's largest community colleges but is also one of the two accredited institutes of Spokane Community Colleges.

Location

Spokane Community College (SCC) is a public community college located in Spokane, Washington. With a population of 227,579, Spokane is the 2nd largest city in Washington and the 99th largest city in the United States.

Some of the largest businesses found in Spokane include Teck American, Key Tronic, and Clearwater Paper

Demographic

  • 67% White
  • 13% Unknown
  • 8% Hispanic
  • 5% Two or more races
  • 2% Asian
  • 2% Black
  • 1% American Indian/Alaska Native
  • 1% Non-resident alien

Weather

Summers in Spokane are short, warm, and dry, whereas winters are extremely cold, and snowy. The temperature normally ranges from 26°F to 88°F throughout the year, rarely falling below 11°F or going over 97°F.

Campus location

The main Spokane Community College (SCC) campus is located on 1810 N Greene St, Spokane, WA 99217, USA 

Attractions/Places to visit

Spokane is famous for its world-class city and state parks! The city is also home to some amazing historic hotels, cafes, scenic sights, art museums, and Japanese Gardens. 

Click here for a complete list of things to do and places to visit in Spokane!

Top fields of study

SCC offers a variety of programs in fields such as welding, automotive, cosmetology, culinary arts, aviation, healthcare, and machining. Keep reading to find out the complete details for the top three programs. 

Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $30,635
  • Monthly Earnings- $2,553

Financial Aid & Debt

  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $13,300
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $127

Number Of Graduates  

  • 446

Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $62,409
  • Monthly Earnings- $5,201
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $16,000
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $153
Number Of Graduates  
  • 88

Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $65,983
  • Monthly Earnings- $5,499
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $19,000
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $181
Number Of Graduates  
  • 87

Cost and financial aid

Average annual cost 

The average annual cost of studying at SCC is $5,855 as of 2021. Cost includes tuition, living costs, books and supplies, and fees (not including the average grants and scholarships for federal financial aid recipients)

Financial Aid 

SCC offers financial aid in the form of Federal Grants, State Grants, Student Loans, Work-Study, Scholarships, Specially Funded Programs, and Veterans Benefits. Click here to learn more about their financial aid program.

Graduation rate & salary

Graduation Rate 

Out of 21,938 students:

  • 36% graduated
  • 42% withdrew
  • 20% transferred
  • 1% still enrolled

Salary 

The salary of SCC graduates is determined by their field of study. The estimate ranges from $24,808 - $65,983.

Student Body

There are over 5,411 undergraduate students at SCC, with 73% of them being full-time students and 27% being part-time. 

Columbia Basin College

Highlights:

Top Fields of Study

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Business Administration, Management and Operations
  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research And Clinical Nursing

Degrees With The Highest Salaries 

  • Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree - $69,140
  • Dental Support Services and Allied Professions - Associate's Degree - $64,493
  • Allied Health Diagnostic, Intervention, and Treatment Professions - Associate's Degree - $48,432

Fact

Columbia Basin College is home to the infamous Bechtel National Planetarium. The planetarium uses the most cutting-edge projection technology in the Pacific Northwest to create life-like, HD visuals, and audio. The panoramic viewing dome, which stands 36 feet tall, creates a fantastic 3-D effect!

Location

Columbia Basin College (CBC) is a public community college located in Pasco, Washington. With a population of 77,326, Pasco is the 17th largest city in Washington and the 461st largest city in the United States.

Some of the largest businesses found in Pasco include Douglas Fruit, Franklin PUD, and Educational Service District 123. 

Demographic

  • 44% White
  • 44% Hispanic
  • 5% Two or more races
  • 3% Unknown
  • 2% Asian
  • 1% Black

Weather

Summers in Pasco are short, hot, and dry, while the winters are extremely cold, and snowy. The temperature normally ranges from 27°F to 93°F throughout the year, rarely falling below 13°F or going over 102°F.

Campus location

The CBC campus is located on 2600 N 20Th Ave, Pasco, WA 99301 

Attractions/Places to visit

Pasco is a fantastic place for adventure enthusiasts! The city is home to a number of golf courses, parks, bicycle, and jogging paths, baseball, and soccer fields. Click here for a complete list of things to do and places to visit in Pasco!

Top fields of study

CBC has over 100 programs and degrees. They offer BAS, BSN, AAS, AA, AS-T, AAS-T degrees as well as various kinds of certificates. Keep reading to find out the complete details for the top three programs. 

Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $21,660
  • Monthly Earnings- $1,805
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $9,000
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $86
Number Of Graduates  
  • 711

Business Administration, Management and Operations - Bachelor's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $48,265
  • Monthly Earnings- $4,022
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $14,209
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $136
Number Of Graduates  
  • 89

Registered Nursing, Nursing Administration, Nursing Research and Clinical Nursing - Associate's Degree

Salary After Completing
  • Median Earnings- $69,140
  • Monthly Earnings- $5,762
Financial Aid & Debt
  • Median Total Debt After Graduation- $15,825
  • Monthly Loan Payment- $151
Number Of Graduates  
  • 51

Cost and financial aid

Average annual cost 

The average annual cost of studying at CBC is $9,628 as of 2021. Cost includes tuition, living costs, books and supplies, and fees (not including the average grants and scholarships for federal financial aid recipients).

Financial Aid 

Once a student's FAFSA or WASFA and additional requirements are completed, they become eligible for financial aid at CBC. Columbia Basin College offers financial aid in the form of grants, Work-Study, and student loans. 

Click here to learn more about their financial aid program.

Graduation rate & salary

Graduation Rate 

Out of 17,451 students:

  • 39% graduated
  • 38% withdrew
  • 20% transferred
  • 3% still enrolled

Salary 

The salary of CBC graduates is determined by their field of study. The estimate ranges from $21,660 - $69,140

Student Body

There are over 6,173 undergraduate students at CBC, with 62% of them being full-time students and 38% being part-time. 

Honorable mentions

Big Bend Community College

Average cost 

  • $6,415

Average salary

  • $21,964 - $65,424

Student body 

  • Undergraduate Students - 
  • Full-time - 77%
  • Part-time - 23%

Top fields

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Technologies 
  • Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods 

South Puget Sound Community College

Average cost

  • $7,007

Average salary 

  • $22,455 - $48,849

Student body

  • Undergraduate Students - 3,931
  • Full-time - 66% 
  • Part-time - 34%

Top fields

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Precision Metal Working
  • Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Technologies 

Shoreline Community College 

Average cost 

  • $7,221

Average salary 

  • $21,508 - $77,087

Student body

  • Undergraduate Students - 2,846
  • Full-time - 54%
  • Part-time - 46%

Top fields

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities
  • Vehicle Maintenance and Repair Technologies 
  • Industrial Production Technologies/Technicians

Walla Walla Community College

Average cost 

  • $5,835

Average salary 

  • $21,964 - $59,688

Student body

  • Undergraduate Students - 2,331
  • Full-time - 74%
  • Part-time - 26%

Top fields

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities 
  • Practical Nursing, Vocational Nursing and Nursing Assistants 
  • Teacher Education and Professional Development, Specific Levels and Methods 

North Seattle College

Average cost 

  • $5,552

Average salary 

  • $33,138 - $67,995

Student body

  • Undergraduate Students - 2,887
  • Full-time - 43%
  • Part-time - 57%

Top fields

  • Liberal Arts and Sciences, General Studies and Humanities - Associate's Degree - 307
  • Allied Health and Medical Assisting Services - Undergraduate Certificate or Diploma - 251
  • Business/Commerce, General - Associate's Degree - 117

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average cost of community college in Washington State?

What is the highest paying field of study for community colleges in Washington?

Can you get a bachelor’s degree in community colleges in Washington?

Enroll Now in the Unmudl Amazon Original CoursesEnroll Now in the Unmudl Amazon Original Courses

Contributor(s)

No items found.

Are you on the fence about changing jobs or a complete career change?

Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

More Articles