Morse Center

About BTC

BTC Facts

BTC has been providing skills-focused education to thousands of local and regional students since 1957.

BTC is located in beautiful Bellingham, Washington, about 90 miles north of Seattle, and 60 miles south of Vancouver, BC.

History & Timeline


    The first Industrial School is planned and built by the Bellingham School District. It evolved into a manual-training section of Whatcom High School.


    Courses in automotive mechanics and machine shop were offered at Fairhaven High School.


    With World War II looming, evening classes are established. Over 4,000 people received industry training during the war.


    Realizing that vocational programming was not serving the community’s needs, planners began work on what will become the present BTC.


    Bellingham Vocational Technical Institute is established on the current 32-acre site, a former truck farm. BVTI is operated by the Bellingham School District.


    Bellingham Vocational Technical Institute is renamed Bellingham Technical College. State legislative action designates BTC as a member of the Washington State Community and Technical College system.


    BTC becomes a member institution of Achieving the Dream, a national nonprofit dedicated to helping students—particularly low-income and students of color—stay in school and earn a college certificate or degree.

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Student Profile

    2,200 Full-time Equivalent Students (FTES) 2017-18(summer + fall + winter + spring divided by 3)

    2,211 Full-time Equivalent Students (FTES) Fall 2017

    5,332 Annual Unduplicated Student Headcount 2017-18

    3,060 Quarterly Student Headcount Fall 2017

    3,045 Quarterly Student Headcount Average Fall, Winter, Spring 2017-18

    693 Quarterly Running Start Student Headcount Average Fall, Winter, Spring 2017-18

    Full-time: 47% Part-time: 53% Student Full-/Part-Time Distribution 2017-18

    31 Mean Student Age 2017-18

    28 Median Student Age 2017-18

    <20: 17%   20-29: 38%   30-39: 22%   40+: 22%   No Data: 1% Student Age Distribution 2017-18

    Students of Color: 21%   White: 50%   Did Not Report: 29% Student Race Distribution 2017-18

    Female: 54%   Male: 45%   Did Not Report: 1% Student Gender Distribution 2015-16

    8% Percent of Students with Disabilities 2017-18

    All Students: 27%   Degree Seeking Students: 47% Percent of Students Receiving Need-Based Financial Aid 2017-18

    All Students: 35%   Degree Seeking Students: 61% Students Receiving Any Financial Aid 2017-18

    199 Veteran Students 2017-18

    34% First-Generation College Students 2017-18

    16% Percent of Students who Work 2017-18

    11% Percent of Students with Children 2017-18

    6% Percent of Students who Hold Bachelor's Degree or Higher 2017-18

    887 Annual Graduates 2017-18

    1,146 Annual Awards 2017-18

    81% Average Placement Rate of BTC Grads 9 Months After Graduation (employed in 2016-17)

About Our School

    1957 Year that BTC Officially Opened on Current Site (then known as Bellingham Technical School)

    1991 Year that BTC Formally Became a College

    32 Number of Acres BTC’s Campus Currently Encompasses (including the Marine Drive Annex)

Faculty and Staff

    59 Full-Time Tenure/Tenure Track Faculty (57) and Regular Part-Time Faculty (2) Spring 20186

    113 Adjunct Part-Time Faculty Spring 2018

    136 Staff Spring 2018


    Accredited By: Northwest Commission of Colleges and Universities

Program Mix:

    68% Workforce; 22% Academic; 5% Basic Skills; 5% Pre-College

    39 Associate of Applied Science (AAS) and AAS-Transfer (AAS-T) Degree Programs 2017-18

    9 Direct Transfer Degrees (DTA/MRP) Programs 2017-18

    55 Certificate Programs 2017-18

    2 Bachelors of Science Degree Programs 2017-18

    365 Business and Industry Representatives Serving on BTC’s Program Advisory Committees 2017-18

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Grants BTC has received

Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration Grant

The Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration has awarded a $2.75m grant to Bellingham Technical College to expand the nursing workforce. A special grant focus is on assisting military veterans, their eligible spouses and Trade-Act eligible workers to employment in this high-demand, high-wage industry.

Contact: Susan M. Parker, Grant Project Manager,, 360.752.8590

Funded by the Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration, Grant # TC-25142-13-60-A-53

Financial Aid

    $6.1 million Total Financial Aid Loans 2015-2016

    $10.4 million Total Financial Aid Grants 2015-2016

    $16.5 Million Total Financial Aid Awards Disbursed 2015-2016

    5,401 Total Individual Financial Aid Awards Granted 2015-2016

    222 Student Scholarships Awarded 2015-2016

    67 Named Annual Scholarships Provided 2015-2016

    35 Endowed Scholarships Provided 2015-2016

    $257,737 Total Scholarship Monies Awarded 2015-2016

Revenues and Expenditures

    $11.1 Million Total State Operating Appropriation Received in 2015-16(excludes financial aid)

    $8.4 Million Total Tuition and Fee Revenue Received in 2015-16(excludes services and activities/building fees)

    $4.5 Million Total Federal, State & Local Grants and Contracts Revenue Received in 2015-16(excludes financial aid)

    $2.2 Million Total Enterprise Revenue Received in 2015-16

    $26.2 Million Total College Revenue Received in 2015-16(excludes student aid and capital pass-thru funds)

    Expenditure Mix 2015-2016:
      Instruction 49%
      Plant Operation/Maint. 16%
      Student Services 13%
      Institutional Support 12%
      Academic Support 8%
      Instructional Resources 2%

    $28.2 Million Projected Total College Budget, All Revenue (excludes capital and financial aid dollars) 2016-17

    49% Revenue Received From the State in 2015-2016

    31% Projected Revenue Received from Tuition, Fees and Ancillary in 2016-17

    13% Projected Revenue from Grants and Contracts in 2016-17

    7% Projected Enterprise and Other Revenue in 2016-17

College is Paying Its Own Way

    An investment in BTC brings dollars back to the treasury

    7.4% Average Return on Tax Payer Investment Over Next 30 Years

    $15.5 Million College’s Annual Net Contribution to Regional Income

    $117.4 Million Dollars that BTC Alumni Bring Annually to Regional Income Through Increased Productivity