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Seattle Central to become “Seattle Central College”

Board of Trustees votes to change name of college district

New name “Seattle Central College” signals expanded opportunities

SEATTLE – At its meeting on March 13, the Seattle Community Colleges District Board of Trustees voted unanimously to change the name of the District to Seattle Colleges and to change the names of the colleges to Seattle Central College, North Seattle College and South Seattle College.

The decision came after a year-long exploration of national and statewide trends; opinion surveys of students, employees and community partners; and consultation with business and civic leaders and representatives from Seattle Public Schools.

All three of the District’s colleges, including Seattle Central, offer bachelor’s degrees now. These Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.S.) degree programs provide the third and fourth year of college work for people who have completed a two-year technical degree. Previously the two-year technical degrees were considered “terminal degrees” with no next educational step.

In her presentation to the Board, District Chancellor Jill Wakefield said, “We believe this will inspire prospective students to reach higher than they thought possible. With the same open admissions policies and the same low tuition, local students can start at a local college that can eventually take them all the way to a bachelor’s degree.”

Changing the colleges’ names, she said, will “signal that we are part of the baccalaureate level program” and is a move to “raise the ceiling” for all our students.

In making its decision, the Board reinforced its commitment to the District’s mission to “provide excellent, accessible educational opportunities to prepare our students for a challenging future.” Albert Shen, Board Chair, said, “We believe that meeting that ‘challenging future’ means the colleges must continue to take new approaches and offer new pathways to completion.”

The name changes are expected be fully implemented in September, in time for the start of the Fall Quarter.


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