Fall 2016

It’s always a great time to be a Husky, but this fall is even better! The football team is on fire and purple pride is everywhere! Of course, along with football fever, fall quarter is racing to a conclusion and students are gearing up for finals. The initial crunch of winter quarter registration is behind us and we’ve entered the period of waiting for that coveted spot in a popular class to open up. The transfer application deadline is a few short weeks away and over the holidays, prospective transfer students will be polishing up those personal statements, ordering transcripts and trying to decide what remaining classes to take.

In the latest Admissions Office update, Carlos Williams reminds you that if you haven’t been to a Transfer Thursday session yet, make it a point to do so during the winter break. For more information about visiting campus, check out the Transfer Thursday website and calendar. Don’t forget to submit your financial aid paper work for 2017-2018 by the new earlier priority deadline of January 15, 2017. Be sure to check out the scholarship search tool on the website for the Office of Merit Scholarships, Fellowships and Awards. Also in this issue, read about two transfer students who were awarded Martin Family Scholarships. Their insights on the transfer experience and their stories make for some interesting and inspiring reading!

Change is constant at the UW and it is not unusual to see a new major appear. This fall saw the introduction of the Education, Communities & Organizations major from the College of Education. Check out the article in this issue by Cassady Glass Hastings, lead faculty for the ECO program. Also in this issue, check out the services at the Commuter and Transfer Commons, a space that can provide a sense of community within the university. Learn about the new office for Student Veteran Life that was established this year by student veterans to help other student veterans navigate the university.

There are many resources for students at the UW, possibly many more than were offered at your previous school. A bit of time spent doing a thorough exploration of the Undergraduate Academic Affairs (UAA) Advising website can reveal many of these resources as well as answer many questions about academic issues and planning. We are sorry that UAA general advisers are not able to schedule individual appointments with prospective transfer students, but encourage you to attend Transfer Thursday in order to meet with UW general and departmental advisers. We hope you find this edition of the newsletter helpful and interesting!

Admissions Update

by Carlos Williams, Assistant Director of Undergraduate Admissions

For autumn 2016, the Seattle campus offered admission to 61% of all Washington community college applicants. This compares to offer rates of 53.3% for high school applicants and 18.5% for applicants from four-year universities and non-Washington community colleges. The offer rate for international transfer students from Washington community colleges was 42.2%. This compares to 24.9% for all international transfers.

In general, the best time to apply the University of Washington is when you are ready to enter your major. For most applicants, that’s when they’ve completed an associate’s degree and/or 90 transferrable quarter credits. To help you plan to transfer, we have created tools such as MyPlan, MyMajor, Academic Planning Worksheets, and the Course Equivalency Guides for each of the Washington community and technical colleges. You can find out more about these tools and other important transfer information by visiting the Admissions website for prospective transfer applicants.

I also highly recommend that you attend one of our Transfer Thursday information sessions. On Transfer Thursday, you will learn about the admissions application process from one of our staff members. There are separate admission information sessions for international applicants as well.  Moreover, many of our academic departments participate in Transfer Thursday by offering information sessions or making academic advisors available for one-on-one advising. Consult the Transfer Thursday website for more details.

Top 20 majors requested by enrolled transfer students:
Business, nursing, biology, computer science, psychology, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, communications, economics, civil engineering, biochemistry, aeronautics & astronautics, design, mathematics, chemistry, social welfare, public health, English, informatics, political science 

Martin Family Scholarship

by Robin Chang

The Martin Family Foundation was formed with the vision of its founder, Benn Martin. His goal was to fund scholarships for students currently attending Washington State community colleges who desired to complete their baccalaureate degree at the University of Washington Seattle Campus. Benn Martin was particularly interested in assisting students who have had a positive impact in their community. Complete program and eligibility information is available on the EXPD website. The Foundation offers two scholarship programs:

  • The Martin Achievement Scholarship funds students who have demonstrated signs of exceptional ability in art, humanities, music, science, and/or leadership at one of the fifteen community colleges located around the Puget Sound region. The program will select Martin Achievement Scholars early in their community college career and provides $5,000 in support for their second year in community college and up to $12,000 per year for up to three years at UW-Seattle. Annual deadline is in April.
  • The Martin Honors Scholarship enables Washington State Community College students (from any WA community college) of exceptional ability and outstanding achievement to complete their baccalaureate degrees at UW-Seattle. Martin Honors Scholars are encouraged to join the Honors Program at UW and, depending on their choice of major, are eligible to graduate with Departmental or College Honors. The scholarship provides $12,000 per year for up to three years at UW-Seattle. Annual deadline is in July for students planning to transfer in summer, fall or winter of the application year (including those who already transferred but have not yet earned more than 18 credits at UW).
Student Profile: Eric King

Majors & Minors: Bachelor’s degree in Public Health (2016), current Graduate Student, Health Services
Previous institution: Seattle Central College
Year/Qtr transferred: Fall 2014
Hometown: Minneapolis
Favorite quote: “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose. You're on your own. And you know what you know. And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go...” ―Dr. Seuss, Oh, The Places You'll Go!


What was the hardest part of transferring?
The size of the campus and the size of the classes was overwhelming. I thought it would be the coursework, but community college prepared me more than I thought. Isolation was also a big thing, especially being a minority and a man in a largely-female major. Another difficult aspect was determining which electives to take because of the myriad of options! It was a bit overwhelming and sometimes difficult when registering for classes.

The people that helped me get over that feeling of being overwhelmed were my UW research professor, who I met during community college, and Chanira Reang Sperry, my academic adviser. Once I got into the major, the advising staff in the department were also helpful; things got easier once I was in the major. 

What was something that surprised you in your transfer experience?
That my GPA went up after transferring. Hard science classes were hard, but for the most part the classes seemed fair and in-line with what I expected. I was also surprised by how much my interests broadened once I was a UW student. I attribute this to the breadth of disciplines available to UW students. I became less focused on the hard sciences and began to explore the social sciences. 

What do you miss about your previous school?
Mentors for sure. It was hard to find mentors at UW. It can seem like a lot of the faculty are heavily focused on research. As an undergrad, I missed professors wanting to get to know you and genuinely wanting you to succeed in their courses. I also miss the diversity in age range of students. As an older undergrad at UW, I was always the oldest one.

But I’m a vocal person, so in being more visible, that allowed me to connect with people, faculty and students with similar interests. That mostly came out of activism.

What resources were most helpful to you when you were preparing to transfer?
I was a Ready Set Transfer student, so did undergraduate research at my community college that was sponsored through UW. The Martin Family Foundation Scholarship community, Mona Pitre-Collins and Chanira Reang Sperry specifically, were great resources. I also connected with the School of Public Health undergraduate major advisers (Tory!) even before entering UW.


How did you select your undergraduate major? How did you select your graduate program?
I always had an interest in public health. Once I realized that was a major, I switched from Bio to Public Health. Public Health was looking at problems that hadn’t been solved, issues that needed solutions. Sciences seemed like memorizing things already known. I wanted to focus on problems without solutions. And I got to take classes in Anthropology, Sociology, Political Science that broadened my worldview and how I look at problems and people. The undergraduate degree was a great introduction and I knew that a graduate degree would allow me to delve deeper into problems and really master Public Health. The undergraduate degree also didn’t have a lot of exposure to policy; and I realized that policy influences everything so wanted to gain competency in that area.

What are your future plans?
Change the world!


How did you first learn about the Martin Scholarship program?
I happened to meet a Martin Family Foundation Board member who had received the scholarship as a student herself. She encouraged me to apply. I applied for the Martin Scholarship the first time and didn’t even get an interview. I went back for my final year at my community college, continued studying hard, got involved in research and reapplied the following year. I spent a lot of time on that second application.

What made you decide to apply?
Having not been selected the first time, it was hard to reapply. I thought about how little time I had really invested in that first application, and thought I could do better. I had actually been admitted to a school in Portland and was planning to go there, but then I got invited to the Martin interview.

The interview was my first time on the UW campus. I was taken aback by the buildings, the fountain, it was overwhelming. But then I walked into the interview and it was like being with family. Everyone was really nice. It felt more like a conversation than an interview.

What advice do you have for future transfer students considering applying?
Start your application early! Put effort into it. Have people read it and give you feedback. Think about why you want to pursue higher education, what you want out of it, your long term goals, and that should be reflected by your grades, but also your community and volunteer work. Reach out to other Martin Scholars for coffee, they’ll be glad to meet you.

What is beneficial to you about being part of the Martin Scholars community?
Free food! It’s a diverse group of students with different perspectives. You might only see them at the quarterly meetings, but at this large campus, it’s nice to have a community to be part of.

Student Profile: Katrin Hosseini

Majors & Minors: Molecular, Cellular & Developmental Biology and Drama
Previous institution:  Bellevue College & Green River College
Year/Qtr transferred:  Fall 2015
Hometown: Tehran, Iran
Favorite quote: “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you”


What was the hardest part of transferring? 
The classes, the way the professors teach, the style of exams were all different than at community college. It took a while to adjust. Most of the science classes ask you to focus on critical thinking and application of what you’re learning, rather than just memorization.

My advice for others transferring in: start studying from day 1. Don’t try to cram just for the mid-term or final. You have to learn how to apply the material you’re learning. Go to lectures prepared every day and learn throughout.

What was something that surprised you in your transfer experience?
A lot of things were surprising. The big classes and curved grading. Outside of class, it was easier to find friends at community college because the campus and classes were smaller. Here it’s harder to find people. At the same time, the good thing at UW is that there are a lot of resources. There are more people that are willing to help you, more tutoring with flexible hours, etc.  I got involved in a lab, which gave me a way to meet people and make friends. Through that lab I got to transfer to another lab. Networking was really important to open doors.

I also got involved in Drama, which made it much easier to find friends because the work there is very collaborative and you have to communicate with people. I added the Drama major initially for escape, because I liked it so much and it allowed me to express myself in new and different ways. For Drama you have to be creative and have an idea of what you’re going to do. In science you always have to be creative too, so the two majors actually work very well together.

This quarter, I’m taking 3 science classes and am part of a show, so I have to do a lot of rehearsals. I literally have to find time to study between classes, labs, and rehearsals. I’m so busy, but I’m actually doing better in my science classes this quarter because of this.  I have to be very efficient about how I use my time. It’s been very helpful.

What do you miss about your previous school?
My teachers. Sometimes they had more available time to communicate with students. Here everyone is so busy. At community college, when I was tired, I could go and chat with my teachers. It’s harder to make a close relationship with professors here, but I have found many teachers at UW who are approachable. I took a history class with Joel Walker that had around 200 people in it, but he was always willing to meet with me and look over my papers, which was really nice. It wasn’t an easy class, but he really taught and I really learned!

What resources were most helpful to you when you were preparing to transfer?
The Martin Family Foundation Scholarships meetings before I transferred allowed me to meet and hear from other people about resources, where to go for help, and how to prepare. Teachers in classes at the community college that challenged critical thinking and talked about needing that before entering UW. If I wanted to know something about UW specifically, I would meet with an adviser at UW, either a general adviser or a departmental adviser. They were really helpful.


How did you select your majors?
I just took an acting class for fun and I liked it so much I decided to double major. Everyone was surprised. For Biology, I was always interested in science and wanted to be a dentist, so Biology was a good way to build that background and get ready for the next steps.

What are you involved in outside of academics? 
Between classes, being involved in research, drama performances, and working at Macy’s, I have no other time to fit anything else in.

After you came to UW, what made you feel like a Husky? 
The first day I started at UW. The environment, how busy the school is, walking around the fountain and seeing all the beautiful buildings, I thought about how lucky I am to be at a school this beautiful—that was my first impression. UW is a very good school with lots of resources and great professors knowledgeable in their fields. I feel lucky to learn from people who work hard and want to improve within their own fields. A UW professor just won the Nobel Prize! Who knows, maybe I can get a Nobel Prize someday!

What are your future plans?
After graduation, I’m planning to study for the DAT and apply for Dental School. I’ll apply to UW, but also others in case I don’t get into UW. I’m sure I’ll continue doing things related to drama and performance too, but not sure exactly how, maybe through local theaters.


How did you first learn about the Martin Scholarship program?
I learned about the scholarship from a friend who was applying for it at the same time. She was at a different community college and had learned about it from an adviser there. It was exciting to learn about a scholarship that would cover so much. I wasn’t sure if I could get selected, so I waited until the last week before the deadline to start working on the application, but I’m happy I did it. I had a good friend who gave me feedback on the essays and that really helped.

What made you decide to apply?
I thought getting a scholarship was very hard, which it is, but you have to know how to write essays and you have to know about the scholarship you’re applying for and how it fits your situation. I worried about even having a chance. But I knew my friend was applying, and she had met other students who had been selected, so she encouraged me and reassured me that it wasn’t just academic performance the Foundation was interested in, but life background as well. So I gave it a chance.

What advice do you have for future transfer students considering applying?
Everyone should apply. At least if you have worked hard to get where you are, then you certainly have a chance. Writing and knowing that the people reading your essays appreciate how hard you’ve worked and are interested in improving your education, that made me feel really good. When I got the interview, I still wasn’t sure, but being invited to interview was such a joy. Someone was interested to know me, my personality. At the interview, I was stressed because it was an interview with the whole Martin Board; my English wasn’t as good as it is now, so I was worried. But when I got there, everyone was welcoming and so nice, it made me feel calm and safe. Afterward I felt so happy and positive about it, even if I didn’t get selected, I would have been happy because it was just such a friendly environment. The questions weren’t trying to throw you off, they were just interested in your background and academic work. Don’t be nervous!

What is beneficial to you about being part of the Martin Scholars community?
The financial support, certainly. Even if you’re at a community college now, the scholars already at UW are a resource for questions and learning about resources even before you get there. You get to meet students who have lots of experiences and are willing to be a resource for you. We have meetings to learn about other scholarships, study abroad programs, other resources, etc. I get to learn about information from around campus that I wouldn’t have time to research on my own. And you find friends!

Student Veteran Life

by Samantha Powers

Student veterans are a key component of the University of Washington. In 2015-2016, they made up nearly 5% of the total Seattle campus population, and numbered 611 discharged veterans, 63 guardsmen, 90 reservists, and 133 active duty service members. Bothell saw 152 student veterans come through their doors, while Tacoma saw 400. There were four student veterans who were a part of the inaugural Husky 100 in 2016, and they can be found in 125 of the 180 majors offered at the University of Washington. 

Student Veteran Life was established in January of 2016 as a unit for student veterans founded by student veterans. SVL is home to a staff of skilled veterans who can help student veterans navigate the University of Washington. From identifying campus locations to student resources, the office is able to serve student veterans at any point in their college experience. Located in the HUB, Student Veteran Life is also a great place for veterans to study, grab a free cup of coffee, use the printer, and, most importantly, meet other veterans. On average, the office sees 22 veterans per day, a number that is continuously growing! As an organization, we make it our mission to reach our new student veterans within the first 90 days that they are on campus. In doing so, we hope to maintain communication throughout their time here, ensuring that they leave the UW with the most positive experience and a diploma in hand. Though Student Veteran Life is already providing or has initiated a number of valuable programs, there is much to be done in the years to come.

Photo by Conrad Blake

The mission of Student Veteran Life is to achieve three main objectives:

  1. Create centralized services and programming that supports student veterans and their dependents in their academic endeavors;
  2. Grow and strengthen the veteran community and identity by cultivating a sense of pride in the sacrifices that student veterans have made in service to their country; and
  3. Represent the unique position and needs of our veteran constituents. 

Student Veteran Life’s vision for years 1 and 2 includes the following initiatives:

The Whole Veteran Initiative is the newest, three pronged approach to hands-on, interactive direct services to student veterans in a holistic way.  In an effort to address mental health, SVL offers alternative healing methods through art courses taught by a local artist who has a passion for working with veterans.  We are looking to expand these art classes in many ways.  There are also two service dogs who are in the Student Veteran Life office most days.  These offer comfort to student veterans and alert us when there might be issues.  We address healing through fitness by running, working out, and offering hiking courses.  Boxing classes are also being considered.  We have partnered with the Mindfulness Project to offer yoga classes to student veterans.  We are exploring meditation and tai chi for the future as well. 

Building Community is also a key component in this process.  Successful annual events are being continued, to include a Memorial Day ceremony in May and Veterans Appreciation activities in November.  Additionally, new annual events have been launched and continue to be launched during this first year, to include a Service Dogs Unleashed event (where service dogs come off leash and can mingle with folks on campus; also an opportunity to answer questions about service dogs); a Coming Home event (where the American Indian and Native Alaskan tribal tradition of calling home their warriors is replicated for all current and alumni students on campus); a Graduation Celebration of Excellence (to congratulate and issue stoles); local sports games and tailgates; Veterans Nights Out and other Dawg Daze activities; and Open Houses.  We are exploring the idea of having a Convocation event at the beginning of the year to welcome student veterans and to issue challenge coins.  Additionally, communication is being improved in the form of newsletters, emails and connecting resources on and off campus to student veterans. 

Finally, Teaching and Education is an important pillar of our years 1 and 2 initiatives. The Veteran Ally Network initiative addresses educating staff and faculty on veterans-related issues, including military cultural competency, transition issues, barriers, what a student veteran is and how to work with/teach veterans in work spaces and classrooms.  

Pre-Health Advising Sessions

by Daniel Poux

The Pre-Health Advising team has moved their weekly drop-in advising sessions to Thursday afternoons to coincide with Transfer Thursday programming. These sessions are for students who have quick questions as they explore, prepare for and apply to health professional programs in the following fields:

  • Dentistry
  • Environmental Health
  • Health Administration
  • Medical Laboratory Science
  • Medicine
  • Nursing
  • Occupational Therapy
  • Optometry
  • Pharmacy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Physician Assistant
  • Podiatry
  • Prosthetics & Orthotics
  • Public Health
  • Speech & Hearing Sciences
  • Veterinary Medicine

These sessions are held in 258 Mary Gates Hall on Thursdays from 2–4 p.m. (when classes are in session). Learn more by visiting the UAA Pre-Health Advising website.

What’s Happening with Pre-Law?

by Donna Sharpe

It's law school application season again! LSATs, personal statements and letters of recommendations are in the forefront for law school applicants. If you’re a prospective transfer student who is considering law school sometime in the future, you should be aware of UW services for pre-law students. 

In addition to general advising for pre-majors and undecided students, the UAA Advising office provides advising for students heading towards careers in professional health sciences and law.  The pre-law website is a good source of information about the basics and helpful to students at all levels of preparation, even those who have not yet transferred. Once you transfer to the UW, you can take advantage of a number of resources including the student pre-law clubs, Phi Alpha Delta and Pre-Law Society, individual pre-law advising, and classes that the UW law school offers for undergraduate students. The Law Fair is held every year in mid-November and provides an opportunity to meet with admissions representatives from over 50 law schools across the country. Our job in pre-law advising is to help students decide if law school is the best option for them as well as assist those who do want to pursue law school to find the school that is the best fit for them. We don’t work for the UW Law School and we don’t promote one law school over another. We do help students prepare by recommending appropriate course work to develop the skills essential to success in law school, and we help with the application documents by providing a sounding board for ideas and feedback.

You can start your preparation for law school before you transfer to the UW. Take classes that emphasize critical thinking, research, writing and communication. Get involved with your community through volunteer and community service activities. Research law careers through library and internet resources and talk to practicing attorneys. Research is a cornerstone of a law career. If you don’t like doing research and extensive reading, you won’t like law! Remember that any major works for law school and there are no specific prerequisite courses. Major in the subject that interests you the most and round out your education with experiential learning such as undergraduate research, internships, leadership positions in student clubs, etc. For more information on law school admission, visit the website of the Law School Application Council

Be sure to check in with the pre-law advising team soon after transfer! The law school application process is a long one and you need to get a start on it in your junior year if you’re planning to apply immediately after earning your undergraduate degree.

Commuter & Transfer Commons (CTC)

The Commuter & Transfer Commons (CTC) assists students who have transferred to the UW and live outside the U-District in creating a sense of identity and community within the larger University. The CTC host programming such as CLUE tutoring and community development events. Services available to assist commuters include day-use lockers, kitchenette, printing and a private changing room. The space is truly a “home away from home” for students and can be found in the Husky Union Building, room 141.

The first Commuter Lounge at the UW was established when the second wing of the HUB opened on May 23, 1952. It was a room located on the ground floor. The room was a space with lounge furniture, tables and chairs, lockers and vending machines. In 1962 the designation of the space changed such that the lounge passed into general use. In 2012 as the HUB was undergoing renovation, a designated space was again set-aside for commuter students, and in 2016 the space was renamed to include our transfer student population.

Manpreet Riar, a senior Communication major, first started coming to the CTC because she needed a space to eat lunch and hangout while not in class. She came in thinking she would just eat food and be on my way out but ended up staying longer than expected because the people in the space were very welcoming and had an interest in wanting to get to know her. Manpreet then started hanging out in the space and studying and found it convenient that she could eat lunch, study, socialize, and use all the resources the CTC had to offer. The space helped her get away from the stress of classes and worries about her busy schedule. Manpreet’s favorite part of utilizing the space is the conversations she has with other commuters and the relationships she builds with people who commute from all over Western, WA.

When Tremaine Ng, a junior studying Electrical Engineering major, started coming to campus, he just went to class and went home every day. After a while he came to the CTC to eat lunch regularly and ended up meeting one of his current friends. He came by to see them more often and since then he’s gotten to know most of the people that come here and always enjoy seeing them.


  • Day-use Lockers
  • Kitchenette
  • Lactation/Changing Room
  • Technology check-out: Laptops and phone chargers
  • CLUE tutoring
  • Monthly programming
  • Dawg Prints Printing Station
New Degree: Education, Communities and Organizations (ECO)


Teaching and learning can be found in every profession as well as in our daily lives as parents, coaches, mentors and citizens. Through education we gain knowledge, motivate people and come together to create change.

The University of Washington’s Education, Communities and Organizations (ECO) degree believes teaching and learning happens not only within the formal classroom, but also across a host of other professions such as youth development, policy reform, business, health care and in a variety of organizations serving communities.

The Bachelor of Arts in Education, Communities and Organizations will provide students with a solid foundation in learning theory, human development, equity studies, organizational dynamics and community-based research and practice. All students complete a community-based capstone internship.


  • Education policy
  • Professional learning and development
  • Community outreach and advocacy
  • Higher education administration
  • Elementary or secondary school teaching*
  • Community-based teaching and learning
  • Education research
  • Youth programs administration and coaching

* Requires state-specified content courses as electives and master’s level teaching certificate