Make Waves.

Western isn’t a place where you show up for four years, learn a few things, and get a job that bores you. That’s for normal schools.

We want people with an appetite for ambition. People who want to learn about the universe, and then change it.

At Western, students develop the world’s first transparent solar window, professors help send rovers to Mars, and graduates teach code to fifth graders.

Through close relationships with professors, a community dedicated to equity and justice, a longstanding commitment to sustainability and academic excellence, we help people find their purpose. And we inspire them to pursue that purpose with everything they’ve got. We bring together those who want to change the world, with the people who are changing it.

This is a place where, together, we can MAKE WAVES.


Western is grounded in the liberal arts tradition — that means you get to explore a variety of academic fields while digging into your chosen one. If you can’t decide which of our 175+ majors to pursue, you can build your own program of study, or pursue a major that already combines disciplines (such as Business and Sustainability, or Environmental Studies/Journalism).

At Western, you can gain real world experience and earn credit toward your degree through an internship, a study abroad program, or by serving your community. Want to challenge yourself? Our nationally recognized Honors Program promotes thought-provoking discussions while fostering a strong sense of community.

Residential Life

Your residence hall is more than just a place to sleep — it's your community. Living on campus makes it easy to connect, get involved, and access campus resources right at your fingertips. It's the complete Western experience.

At Western, you'll also have the ability to choose a community you're comfortable in. We encourage you to find your fit by offering quiet, substance-free, gender-inclusive, Honors housing, and international community options, among others.

New students who meet the application deadlines are prioritized for housing their first year. You can request to live with a friend, let us assign you a roommate, or search for one using our portal. Western also offers the opportunity to customize a housing plan that fits your budget by selecting the type of room and number of roommates you prefer. 

Beyond the Classroom

Western is located in the beautiful coastal city of Bellingham, which features a vibrant downtown alongside the natural beauty the Pacific Northwest is famous for. At Western, you’ll be joining a safe, inclusive, and welcoming community that will be supportive of your goals, both inside and outside of the classroom.

  • Join the Associated Students (AS): Whether you want to start a club or run for student body president, the AS makes it easy to get involved. The AS provides student leadership on campus, registers students to vote, and produces awesome campus concerts, cultural events, engaging speaker’s series, and so much more.
  • Get Involved: Connect with students who share your interests by joining one of the 200+ student-led clubs and organizations on campus – or start your own! You’ll find clubs centered on academics, the arts, culture, gaming, recreation, and much more.
  • Find Your Community: Western's Ethnic Student Center is made up of 19 different clubs all working together to affirm identities, build a sense of community, and cultivate leadership. For almost 30 years the ESC has been called a home away from home for many students of color on Western’s campus.
  • Stay Active: You’ll have access to everything you’ll need to go hiking, skiing, or mountain biking with the help of our Outdoor Center. Our Student Rec Center features a rock-climbing wall, a pool, a weight room, and cardio machines. Looking to join a team? Western competes in more than a dozen NCAA Division II Sports, offers 25 club sports, and several popular intramural sports, including flag football, basketball, and softball.

Admissions Website

Deadline Information

  • Early Decision - November 1
  • Regular Decision - January 31 

Students who complete their admission application by November 1 are guaranteed to receive a response by December 31. Admitted Early Action students will also receive expedited scholarship review and financial aid notification. Students admitted to Western via Early Action have until May 1 to confirm their intent to enroll.

Required Application Materials

A complete application includes:

  1. The application for undergraduate admission, including essay and activities list.
  2. A $65 non-refundable application fee (waiver may be available based on financial need)
  3. Unofficial high school transcript or certificate/diploma of high school equivalency (such as the GED) – submitted electronically or by mail.

Test scores are optional
Western doesn’t require test scores, but will consider them if submitted.

Financial Aid

We understand that paying for a college education is a big investment and are committed to keeping tuition low and academic quality high. At Western, there are several resources available to you and your family to help with college expenses.

More than 60% of students at Western receive financial aid in the form of grants, tuition waivers, scholarships, student employment and/or loans to help pay for tuition,
books, educational supplies, housing, food, transportation, and personal expenses.

Here are some helpful links to help you learn more about financial aid at Western:

Additional Information