University student.


With around 750,000 people, Seattle is the 18th largest city in the United States. Both Seattle natives and newcomers can appreciate the immense talent that lives within the confines of the area. Students from all over the world come to the Seattle area to study at some of the United States’ best universities


From private colleges to small institutions and everything in between, the rainy city of Seattle is a major hub of education. Regardless of your interest, Seattle is sure to provide a variety of programs to match all your educational needs. With so many educational options to choose from, where do you begin? We’re here to breakdown some of the top universities near Seattle.


The History of Education in Seattle


Seattle boasts a rich history of education and innovation. 


Before we dive into the specifics, let’s take a step back and look at Seattle’s history of education as a whole. Seattle has a richly diverse educational culture that includes both public and private institutions. The city is home to some of the most prestigious and important libraries, museums, and educational research facilities in the world! 


Washington State is home to 6 major four-year public colleges and universities and over 300 independent colleges, universities, and career schools. 


Seattle has a rich history of higher education on a variety of educational levels. From major universities such as the University of Washington to smaller universities such as Bellevue College, there is something for everyone when considering higher education in Seattle.


With the multitude of colleges and universities available in the Seattle area and rich history of education that dates back centuries, Seattle proves itself to be one of the top higher educational cities in the world. 


Is Seattle a Good Place to Study?


Student looking at the camera.
Would you consider studying in Seattle?


As we’ve already established, Seattle has a long and prosperous history of higher education. However, the question still remains “Is Seattle a good place to study?”. The short answer is yes. Here’s why. 


1. The Culture


The culture of Seattle is widespread and diverse as it has been influenced by a variety of outside cultures and sources. The creative scene in the Seattle area is booming and there are massive amounts of art centered programs available for citizens and students. With everything from community theater to public murals and art exhibitions, Seattle truly is a beautiful place to live. 


Seattle also has a booming tech scene as it’s one of the most start-up driven cities in the world. From major industry players such as Microsoft to a multitude of smaller startups, there is truly something for everyone in the Seattle tech scene. 


Innovation is a top priority in Seattle and this mentality shines throughout the area. Additionally, a variety of museums and parks are spread throughout the sprawling landscape providing yet another source of creativity and inspiration for the citizens of Seattle. With a bustling tourism industry and a city determined to be diverse, Seattle is a city that is only looking to grow in the future. 


2. Innovation


As mentioned previously, Seattle is a major hub of all things innovation. From the tech industry to the arts, everyone in Seattle is motivated to get things done. With a variety of coworking spaces and different ways of networking available, Seattle is a hub of all things progress. 


Seattle has access to some of the brightest minds throughout a variety of industries. Living in close proximity to such great minds could actually end up boosting your own motivation and creativity. 


3. Job Prospects


Seattle is one of the top cities to offer a multitude of six-figure job salary options. With some of the best-educated professionals all living in such close proximity, admittedly there is tough competition for job openings. However, with new companies being formed every day and a variety of industries in the Seattle area continuing to be on the rise, the job market in Seattle is only going to grow from here. 


As mentioned before, Seattle is home to some of the tech industry’s biggest figures. Being in close proximity to such accomplished companies can help get your foot in the door when it comes time to start job hunting. 


Top Universities Near Seattle


Mt. Rainier in Washington State
Universities both big and small call Seattle home. 


1. The University of Washington


Routinely ranked as one of the best colleges in the Pacific Northwest, the University of Washington is not shy about flexing its academic muscles. Founded back in 1861, the university was first established in downtown Seattle. Today, the university also has campuses in Tacoma and Bothell. 


Overall, UW has over 500 academic buildings totaling 20 million square feet of space. The university has one of the largest library systems in the world with a total of 26 libraries spread across campus. UW offers a variety of bachelors, masters, and doctorate degrees throughout 140 departments. The university sees over 46,000 students enroll each year. 


2. Digipen Institute of Technology


Located 20 minutes from Seattle in Redmond, Washington, Digipen Institute of Technology is a private nonprofit university specializing in all things tech-related. With campuses in Singapore and Spain, Digipen is dedicated to offering students a variety of study abroad opportunities during their time at the university.


Digipen offers both bachelors and masters degrees in Computer Science, Animation, Video Game Development, Sound Design, Game Design, and Computer Engineering. Originally founded in Vancouver, Canada in 1988, Digipen went on to open their US campus 10 years later.


Today, Digipen is a major player in technological higher education throughout the globe. 


3. Pacific Lutheran University


Located 40 minutes from downtown Seattle in Parkland, Washington, Pacific Lutheran University is a private Lutheran university which was founded back in 1890. As of 2017, the university has a total of 220 full-time professors teaching on the 156-acre campus. 


PLU offers 44 majors and 54 minors in a variety of educational subjects. A significantly smaller university, there are currently only around 3,100 students attending PLU. 


4. University of Puget Sound


The University of Puget Sound is a private liberal arts university located in Tacoma, Washington. Puget offers Bachelor of Arts, Bachelor of Science, Bachelor of Music, Master of Arts in Teaching, Master of Education, Master of Occupational Therapy, and Doctoral Physical Therapy degrees. 


The college attracts 2,600 students from 44 states and 16 countries as it offers over 1,600 courses in 50 different areas of study per year. Founded by the United Methodist Church in 1888, the university stands as one of the oldest in the area. 


5. Seattle University


Seattle University is a private Jesuit university located in Seattle, Washington. SU is the largest independent university in the Pacific Northwest with over 7,500 students enrolled in a variety of graduate and undergraduate programs. 


The university boasts a beautiful 50-acre campus that has been recognized by the city of Seattle for a pristine commitment to sustainability and eco-friendliness. 


6. Seattle Pacific University 


Seattle Pacific University is a private Christian institution located in Seattle, Washington. Founded in 1891, the university was originally designed to train missionaries for overseas service. 


Today, there are a total of 3,600 students enrolled in the university taking part in a variety of courses and educational programs. The university offers six schools of education including the College of Arts and Sciences, School of Business, Government, and Economics, School of Education, School of Health Sciences, School of Psychology, Family and Community, and the School of Theology. 


7. Cornish College of the Arts


Cornish College of the Arts was founded in 1914, originally as the Cornish School of Music. Today, the college operates a three-part campus in the Capitol Hill, Denny Triangle, and Seattle Center Areas of Seattle, Washington. 


The university boasts a variety of amenities including several theaters, an expansive library, a variety of museums, and much more. Cornish offers courses in Art, Dance, Design, Film, Interior Architecture, Music, Performance Production, and Theater. During the 2017-2018 academic school year, Cornish had a total of 658 students enrolled. 


8. Bellevue College


Bellevue College is a public college located right across the bay from Seattle in Bellevue, Washington. With an annual enrollment of 31,000 students, the college is the third-largest higher education institution in the state of Washington. While the school has programs offering associates, bachelors, and professional-technical degrees, the college is most popular for its ability to transfer credits to other institutions. 


Originally established in 1966, Bellevue College now has three campuses across the city. Bellevue College has more than 80 student clubs and organizations. 


What’s the Takeaway?


Person hiking.
Where will you go on your own educational journey?


Seattle’s universities are some of the best in the world. From large private institutions to smaller local options, each university in the Seattle area is influenced by the city in a different way. Through the rich culture of the Seattle area, these universities have the pleasure of being able to influence their students through a variety of different worldviews and opportunities. 


As you continue to grow throughout your coding journey, keeping yourself informed of the industry’s latest happenings will be absolutely vital to your career success. That’s why we’re here to keep you updated and motivated as you follow your programming goals and prepare for a career in the tech industry! 

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