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Study in Washington

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For those with a passion for outdoor pursuits, Washington State will certainly appeal. Just remember to wrap up warm in the colder months!

Washington State (not to be confused with Washington DC) is situated at the extreme northwest point of the contiguous United States, with the Pacific Ocean to the west, and Canada to north.

It is known as the Evergreen State due to the large amount of evergreen forest coverage allowed by its fresh wet climate. It is also home to several mountain ranges, the most notable of which is the Cascade Range which lies to the west of the state.

The main urban hub of the state is Seattle, one of the biggest – over half the state’s population lives in and around it – and best known cities in the United States. It is renowned for its vibrant alternative music scene and its sophisticated café culture.

Seattle is also one of the most economically powerful cities in the country, with its modern wealth founded on its internet and technology industries. But it is not alone in producing the state’s wealth, which is equivalent to that of Denmark. Agriculture still contributes a great deal, and Washington is also known for its wine.

So, if you’re looking to combine spectacular scenery and the great outdoors with culture and city living, then perhaps Washington ought to be pretty high up your list!

Washington: Fast facts

•    Total state population is around 6.8 million

•    The state is named for the first president of the US, George Washington, who is depicted on the state’s flag

•    Pike Place Market in Seattle, founded in 1907, attracts 10 million visitors a year and is arguably America’s most famous farmers’ market – Pike Place Fish Market alone can attract up to 10,000 visitors a day, and is known for its tradition of throwing fish to customers

•    Washington leads the US in terms of apple production

•    Famous Washingtonians include Jimi Hendrix, Kurt Cobain and Bill Gates

•    Microsoft’s headquarters are in Redmond, Washington

•    The world’s first Starbucks was opened in Seattle in 1971

•    The Hoh Rainforest on western Washington's Olympic Peninsula is the contiguous United States’ only rainforest

Top universities in Washington

Washington is represented by two universities in the 2011/12 QS World University Rankings. Leading the way is the University of Washington, which ranks at 56, putting it among the world’s elite. Accordingly, it has been categorized as a ‘Public Ivy’.

Based in Seattle, the university was founded in 1861 and serves 92,000 students annually. It offers 250 degree options and undergraduates can compete for one of 7,000 research opportunities.

UW receives more federal research money than any other public university in the US. Amongst other things, it specializes in environmental research – take very seriously in the Pacific Northwest region in general.

The Pullman-based Washington State University also makes the rankings, coming in at 354. Smaller than the University of Washington, it nonetheless also caters for a large number of students (a total of 27,000, from 93 different countries) and is also classed as research intensive university.

It offers 95 undergraduate majors, 66 master’s degrees and 47 doctoral courses. In terms of research, Washington State University specializes in energy.

Western Washington University is the next most prominent of Washington's many public institution, serving 15,000 students. Washington is also the home of Evergreen State College, which is famous for not handing out grades to its students!

More states in the north-west of the US:

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Written by QS Staff Writer

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Um... So, you said not to confuse Washington State and DC, but the picture at the top is from DC, not Washington State.

Thanks Katie! That's unforgivable! (All changed now to a picture of Seattle) :)


Hi Ved, we have a blog post about PhD funding around the world here, and we also have a ranking of the top universities in the US for pharmacy and pharmacology. I'd suggest researching universities in this list to see if they offer a PhD program that's right for you and to find out more about entry requirements and funding opportunities. (Also, bear in mind that the higher up the rankings you go, the more competitive the programs will be) Good luck! Laura

I want to study medecine and I also need a sponsorship to study overseas. How can I join an university from USA?

I have been looking for a university that has a good reputation in computer science. The best ones that I could find were really expensive. So I went looking for scholarships, I found one from microsoft. The only problem was, that you need to follow a summer internship. That isn't the problem. The only thing is, it's in Washington (Redmond). So it's not so handy if I study elsewhere and need to travel a lot. Can anyone give me some tips if I should study in Washington? yes, wich university? Or are there better scholarships?

about me:
I live in the Netherlands,
I'm only 14 years old, I have 2 more years to prepare.
I'm interested in computer technology, and i want to study Business Analytics (or how it's called?) and i definitly need a scholarship to go to an international university.

Hi David. We have a list of computer science scholarships here, which might give you a few more ideas:
You may also be interested in our ranking of the world's top universities for computer science:
Best of luck!

want to join a university to pursue electrical and electronic engineering and also I need a spornsorship to study abroad from africa

Hi Philip, I would advise taking a look at the top universities in the US for electrical and electronic engineering here -

If your academic history is less than exceptional, you'll have more of a chance at studying at the universities further down in the list.

For scholarships information, you might want to take a look here -

We feature many opportunities for students studying Engineering as well as for those from developing countries which might interest you.

Hope this helps get you started!


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