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Willamette University Update

on September 30, 2015 in Application Process

Willamette 2Wesley Dawn, the Seattle area admissions representative for Willamette University, hosted an excellent event for Seattle counselors, updating us on the university. Willamette is a small, liberal arts college that has recently been selected as a member of the Colleges That Change Lives consortium.


Wesley provided a terrific summary of what makes Willamette unique. Here are their five points of distinction:


1) Commitment to civic engagement: With the state Capitol across the street, 80% of the interns there are Willamette students. Interns in the area of policy, biology, economics and more participate.


2) Amazing faculty: Recognized as some of the best in country by the Carnegie and Case Foundations. Faculty work as research partners with students, and Willamette provides grants to help fund summer internships in both humanities and sciences.


3) Connection to place and sustainability: Salem, city in the heart of Willamette Valley, they own 300 acres of forest nearby with an environmental science program for prairie reconstructing, including students in anthropology, biology, and sustainability. Willamette also has an observatory nearby. A hospital across the street also offers pre-med students the opportunity to intern.


4) Global orientation: Tokyo International University has had a connection with Willamette over the last 50 years including an American Studies program with Japanese students at Willamette living with American students-TIU also has a branch at Willamette. Job opportunities are also available abroad through TIU, with students helping teach English in Japan. Half of Willamette students study abroad. In addition, several Fulbright scholars are based at Willamette helping students learn languages-a very strong program.


5) Joint graduate programs: Willamette students may start working on their graduate courses during their fourth year, achieving a JD or MBA and a year. Engineering and forestry degrees are available with other schools.


More interesting updates


1)    The Compass Program: A new program to help all students develop a plan as part of curriculum, including a great career center. Students meet several times a year, developing a road map to success and passport to professionalism (resumes, interviews, etc.). This is an intentional program in career development, connecting alumni, students and parents.


2)    BA in theater best of country (Onstage magazine). Music and theater, lots of non-majors. Talent scholarships are available for music and theater, even if students don’t plan to major.


3)    Housing: lots of singles and a quiet dorm


4)    Greek life: residential sororities and deferred recruitment, non-residential for men


5)    Computer Science Program: theoretical and strong


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