a space to engage with colleagues in conversations that matter
a space to engage with colleagues in conversations that matter

Our Guiding Purpose

We are guided by the academic success of all students. Ultimately, the measures of our success are improvements in students’ persistence, achievement, and graduation rates—particularly students who are the first in their families to go to college and those from groups historically under‐served in higher education. 

A Note from the Director


To our community,

Welcome to 2022.  Marking a new year is opportune moment for reflection. The news of bell hooks death in December has me thinking about the profound impact her words have had on me over the years.  Discovering her writings about teaching was the beginning of an exciting (and frequently challenging) journey interrogating assumptions and discovering my own inner educator identity. I, like many, approached my first teaching gig as an apprentice - I adopted the syllabi, course plans, and learning strategies that I saw modeled by other faculty teaching similar courses. It was an exciting time of learning how to be a faculty member - and ironically there wasn't sufficient time to explore how I wanted to be as an educator. Pretty quickly I was faced with admitting that the approaches I adopted weren't working. I was exhasted and the students in my courses were frustrated.
Looking back, I can name three texts that were instrumental in helping me uncover my purpose as an educator. For me, that purpose centers relationship and connection to realize the power of education for social change. 
I am forever grateful for falling in with a fantastic cohort of engaged and progressive educators early in my teaching career that took me under their collective wings.  My wish for all of you in 2022 that you convene your people - the ones that help you grow and make good trouble.  If you don’t have those people, connect with the Washington Center collaborative.  I am guessing you’ll find some there.

What texts or resources anchor you as an educator? 
Share yours with us on Twitter (@WaCenterTESC) or Slack.

Don't forget to submit your application by January 31 to lock in the early-bird registration rate. 

23rd Annual National Summer Institute for
Improving Undergraduate Education

July 11-14, 2022
The Evergreen State College | 
Olympia, WA
Submit a team application now!

Pre-institute workshops

Turning Evidence into more Equitable Outcomes for Students: Lessons from the National Institute for Learning Outcomes (NILOA) and the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE)
Jillian Kinzie (National Survey of Students Engagement) and Gianina Baker (National Institute on Learning Outcomes Assessment)
Guided Pathways as an Equity Framework
Emily Lardner (Highline College) and Wendy Rockhill (Seattle Central Community College)
After a two-year pandemic-induced hiatus, we are thrilled to invite campus teams to join us on the Evergreen State College's beautiful campus for the Washington Center's 23rd annual National Summer Institute for Improving Undergraduate Education

Application & Fees

$1,400 per team member (Applications received before February 1, 2022). Review the fee structure for additional details

Health and Safety

We’ve taken your health and safety as a crucial consideration in our planning. [Read our health & safety statement

Join us as we think strategically about how to communicate our vision to our campus community

The Washington Center Collaborative hosts monthly mini-workshops led by the dynamic and talented Resource Faculty. These free, virtual workshops offer a taste of what you can expect to experience at the summer institute.  
Engaging the campus community: Thinking strategically about communicating your vision
Friday, March 4, 2022 | 10-11:15 am (Pacific Time)
Facilitated by Wendi Dew (Valencia College) and Tate Hurvitz (Grossmont College)

Change is hard, even in the best circumstances.  So how can we avoid making important changes even harder - and maybe even help move them forward - by communicating them effectively?  Who should do the telling?  With whom should we communicate, and when?  How do we tell?  What do we include (and why)?  Come learn some tips and spend some time unpacking the possibilities for communicating a change project at your own institutions.
RSVP today!

Community highlights

Add your learning community program to the National Learning Community Directory 

Do you have learning communities on your campus?  The Washington Center is collaborating with the National Learning Community Collaborative to host a comprehensive directory of learning community programs and practitioners. Can you help us get the word out?  Please encourage your colleagues to contribute by completing the National Learning Community Directory Submission Form.

Send your questions, suggestions, or other comments about the directory to washcenter@evergreen.edu.

Call for Proposals: Consortium for Illinois Learning Communities Best Practices Symposium 

April 29, 2022
Proposals are currently being accepted for the 2022 Best Practices Symposium, "Creating Inclusive Communities: Promoting Equity Through Learning Communities." The Consortium for Illinois Learning Communities (CILC) invites faculty, staff, and administrators involved with or interested in establishing learning communities (LCs) at two– and four-year colleges/universities from across the country to submit proposals for sessions focusing on innovative course offerings, programs, pedagogies, and assessment efforts. Explore the CILC website for more details on submitting a proposal. 

About the Collaborative

In 2020, the Washington Center launched the Washington Center Collaborative as a place where higher education scholars, practitioners, and administrators convene to learn with supportive colleagues. The Collaborative consists of monthly convenings, a newsletter, and a Slack space
We encourage you to join the Washington Center Collaborative Slack for future workshop announcements and to connect with colleagues. 
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