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  • Writer's pictureAllison Styffe

Spotlights: Wazzu, $10K for 250 words, and a HIT career

Updated: Jan 4, 2021

COLLEGE: Washington State University

Location: Pullman, WA

Tuition: $16,113 (WUE/Cougar Award)*

Size: Large (26,000 students)

Did you know that Washington State University was once more commonly known as Wazzu? While its nickname lives mostly in the past, the school continues to propel students successfully into their futures. Through WSU's 98 available majors, students from 96 countries target critical national and global problems, mentored by professors who are leaders in their fields. Their most popular programs include Business, Management, Marketing, and Related Support Services, as well as Engineering and Social Sciences. And for those who intend to pursue graduate school, WSU offers 78 master's degree programs, 65 doctoral degree programs, and 3 professional degree programs (medicine, pharmacy, and veterinary medicine).

Worried about out-of-state costs? WSU delivers $380 million in financial aid and scholarships for undergraduate students, and those from Oregon who have a 3.6+ GPA are benefactors of one such scholarship that cuts out-of-state tuition down by 40%! It's called the WUE/Distinguished Cougar Award, and it equates to $11,000 per year toward tuition; learn more about it here.

As for the campus life, this large university is nestled into a rural area in Western Washington, which makes for an exciting combination of outdoor recreation possibilities and a bustling campus environment. From their Pac-12 sports teams to join or cheer for (go Cougs!) to their thriving Greek Life — nearly 20 percent of all students are members of the 40+ fraternity and sorority chapters on campus — the WSU community is filled with opportunities for big school spirit and close-knit community.

Diversity it a strong-held value on the campus as well. It is among the top 32 universities nationally for policies supportive of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer students. 30% of its student population identifies as multicultural, with nearly 2,000 international students. It has 4 student centers that build appreciation of cultural and ethnic diversity.

Want to learn more about Washington State University? Start with this virtual campus tour!


SCHOLARSHIP: Unigo's Monthly Scholarships

Amount: $1,500 - $10,000

Deadline: December 31, 2021 (or monthly)

Type: Short essay

Each month, Unigo presents students with a creative, short essay prompt in exchange for potential scholarship money. Their biggest award is offered in December each year, and here's the prompt: "Imagine a historical figure is brought back to life. Who is it? What's their favorite mobile app?" Write a 250 word response to that question, and you could win $10K toward your college tuition — seriously, that's it!

Other month's awards are between $1,500 and $5,000 with prompt themes ranging from zombies to ice cream. Students 14 years and older are eligible to enter. So what are you waiting for? Click here to to see the full list of Unigo's monthly scholarships.


CAREER: Health Information Technology (HIT) Careers

Median salary: $47,294

Education needed: 1-year Certificate or 2-year Associate Degree Job growth: 13% growth, faster than average

Calling all numbers, systems, and data geeks — this could be the job for you!

If a four-year college isn’t on your horizon, consider one of the many lucrative career fields available with little post-high school education and/or on-the-job training. This month’s spotlight is Health Information Technology.

Medical records and health information technicians organize and manage health information data. This can sound dry, but it can be very exciting if you like to learn new systems and organizational tools! These health care workers ensure that patient information is accurate, accessible, and secure in both paper files and electronic systems. They code and categorize patient information for insurance reimbursement purposes, for databases and registries, and to maintain patients’ medical and treatment histories.

Health Information Technology programs in Oregon are offered at Central Oregon CC, Chemeketa CC, Clackamas CC, Clatsop CC, Rogue CC, Rillamook Bay CC, Treasure Valley CC, Umpqua CC, Lane CC, Mt. Hood CC, and Portland CC.

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