May 30, 2024  
2018-2019 Catalog SVC 
2018-2019 Catalog SVC [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

About Our College


President’s Message

Whether you’re preparing for a new job, beginning your college experience, or exploring a new passion in life, thank you for choosing Skagit Valley College.

Skagit Valley College is making a difference throughout our community by opening the doors to higher education for all who seek a better future. I am proud that we have created a diverse learning environment where everyone is welcomed and valued. So, no matter what your background, skill level, or life experiences are when you begin your academic journey, you will receive the support you need to succeed.

In welcoming you to our campuses and centers, you will enter our doors with your own dream or goal. Perhaps it’s a goal of starting your first college experience and pursuing a bachelor’s degree. It may be a goal of becoming a skilled chef who prepares flavorful dishes with locally grown ingredients. Or, it may be a goal of becoming a teacher and role model in a new land, fulfilling your American Dream. 

What makes our College special is that we are deeply committed to equity as our framework in providing access, supporting achievement, and strengthening community. With this focus, our faculty and staff will meet you where you are, and provide services, tools, and encouragement that build a sense of community, safety, and belonging. Touch points have been developed to help you every step of the way: from your initial inquiry to advising, registration, assessment and placement, first quarter experience, areas of study, degree maps and educational planning, and graduation.

As a proud SVC alum, I had excellent instructors, advisors, and coaches who guided and mentored me while I earned my Associate in Arts degree. The SVC community became the cornerstone of my college experience and it’s what inspired me to pursue a career in higher education. My hope is that your experience at SVC will be just as transformational as mine was for me.

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, faculty, and staff, welcome to our community of learners. We look forward supporting your educational goals and celebrating your academic success.

Dr. Thomas A. Keegan
President, Skagit Valley College


Skagit Valley College provides opportunities for students in pursuit of their educational and employment goals, while contributing to the economic and cultural enrichment of our communities.


Skagit Valley College is dedicated to the success of our students. Our work is guided by a set of shared principles and our decisions are based on strategy and evidence. We are committed to quality, innovation, equity, and lifelong learning of students and employees.

Guiding Principles

The College community is guided by the following principles:

  • Respect
  • Integrity
  • Open & Honest Communication
  • Collaboration

A Quick Look at Skagit Valley College

Skagit Valley College is a public community college, operating under the supervision of a local Board of Trustees appointed by the governor. SVC’s district includes Skagit, Island, and San Juan counties.


Skagit Valley College is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Accreditation of an institution of higher education by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities indicates that it meets or exceeds criteria for the assessment of institutional quality evaluated through a peer review process. An accredited college or university is one which has available the necessary resources to achieve its stated purposes through appropriate educational programs, is substantially doing so, and gives reasonable evidence that it will continue to do so in the foreseeable future. Institutional integrity is also addressed through accreditation.

Accreditation by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities is not partial but applies to the institution as a whole. As such, it is not a guarantee of every course or program offered, or the competence of individual graduates. Rather, it provides reasonable assurance about the quality of opportunities available to students who attend the institution.   

Inquiries regarding an institution’s accredited status by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities should be directed to the administrative staff of the institution. Individuals may also contact: 

Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities
8060 165th Avenue N.E., Suite 100
Redmond, WA 98052 (425) 558‐4224

Brief History

Skagit Valley College, originally named Mount Vernon Junior College, began serving students in 1926 as an adjunct to Union High School in Mount Vernon. The name was changed to Skagit Valley Junior College in 1948, and in 1958 the present name was adopted. SVC has the proud distinction of being the second oldest community college in Washington state.

During the early years, classes were held on the top floor of the high school building. In 1955, a permanent site of 35 acres was purchased and a complex of six buildings was completed in 1959. Because of immediate increases in student enrollment, another 10 acres of land was purchased and a new Library building was constructed. Additional purchases of land have brought the total campus area in Mount Vernon to more than 110 acres.

Currently, SVC serves students at the Mount Vernon Campus in Mount Vernon and at the Whidbey Island Campus in Oak Harbor. The college also operates three centers: South Whidbey Center in Langley, San Juan Center in Friday Harbor, and the Marine Technology Center in Anacortes.

Skagit Valley College Foundation

Since 1978, generous donors, enthusiastic alums, and dedicated volunteers have helped sustain and grow the SVC Foundation with their donations, talent, and insight to build one of the premier community college foundations in Washington. The SVC Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that assists students with scholarships, emergency funds, and childcare vouchers, enhances innovative instruction, and supports campus development programs. A volunteer Board of Governors provides leadership to the SVC Foundation. To learn more about opportunities to support SVC programs and students, visit or call 360.416.7717.

All Skagit Valley College publications and documents are available in alternate formats upon request by calling Disability Access Services, 360.416.7818.

A Learning College

SVC has a deep commitment to putting learning first and providing you with challenging and affordable educational opportunities through many delivery modes.


We know you look for the best value: SVC is an affordable option. Our tuition is lower than tuition at a four-year college or university, resulting in a real savings to you. If you find that you need financial assistance, scholarships, loans, and grants may be available to you. Find out more about Financial Aid & Scholarships  in this catalog.

Diverse Course & Program Options

  • As a transfer degree student, you can take your first two years of college at SVC and then transfer to a four-year college or university as a junior. Our graduates who go on to universities do as well or better than students who begin college at four-year schools.
  • Or, if your goal is to retool or launch a new career, we offer Professional/Technical degrees and certificates in some of today’s most in-demand fields: Nursing and Diesel Power Technology, to mention two.
  • If you’ve been away from college for some time, our advising staff can help make the transition less stressful
  • Our Basic Skills courses are designed to help you brush up on subjects like Math, English and Reading, complete high school or get your GED®.
  • Learn in the classroom or online.
  • We also offer English Language Acquisition courses.
  • Of course, you are also welcome to take courses for personal enrichment.

Exceptional Faculty/Small Class Size

At SVC, we keep class sizes small to allow personal interaction with your instructors and with other students. We believe communication, interaction and critical thinking are essential skills to your success at SVC. Faculty members at Skagit Valley College are dedicated to helping you achieve the well-rounded education and up-todate skills that you expect. They bring their enthusiasm for learning into the classroom.

Quality Curriculum

If you want to challenge your mind, SVC is right for you! SVC is a national leader in teaching interdisciplinary classes. For example, you may study Drama and Physics in a Learning Community or study English linked with a distribution course. These innovative courses link faculty from different departments and have earned high praise from SVC graduates.

Commitment to Diversity, Inclusion, and Safety

Skagit Valley College believes that you are a unique individual and that you deserve an opportunity to learn and live in a positive environment. Our goal is to foster values that promote open-mindedness, awareness, sensitivity, and respect for differences.

Research & Assessment Activities

In order to determine whether we are accomplishing our college mission, vision and guiding principles we evaluate and assess our programs, courses, services, and students.
Assessment starts with what matters most-you, the student. You may be asked to cooperate in various surveys, interviews, focus groups, and other data-collection efforts by the college.
Since our mission is directed to the education of the whole person, your achievement can be measured only by evidence concerning the whole person. We use the information gathered through assessment for research purposes. The college protects the privacy of student records in keeping with the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA.) For more information about FERPA, visit Enrollment Services at your campus or center.
Our goal through assessment is to increase your learning, satisfaction, and success. We value your contribution to the assessment effort. Contact the Institutional Planning & Effectiveness Office at 360.416.7738 for more information.

Credits and Disclaimers

This edition of the Skagit Valley College Catalog is effective beginning with Summer Quarter, 2018, through Spring Quarter, 2019. Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information containedin this publication. Students are advised, however, that such information is subject to change without notice, and advisors should, therefore, be consulted on a regular basis for current information.

Skagit Valley College catalogs, class schedules, web site, fee schedules, etc., do not create binding contracts between Skagit Valley College and its students. The college and its divisions reserve the right at any time to make changes in any regulations or requirements governing instruction in and graduation from the college and its various divisions. Changes shall take effect whenever the proper authorities determine and shall apply not only to prospective students but also to those who are currently enrolled at the college. Except as other conditionsdictate, the college will make every reasonable effort to ensure that students currently enrolled in programs, and making normal progress toward completion of any requirements, will have the opportunity to complete any program which is to be discontinued. The college’s total liability for student claims related to classes or programs shall be limited to the tuition and expenses paid by the student to the college for those classes. In no event shall the college be liable for any special, indirect, incidental or consequential damages, including but not limited to, loss of earnings or profits.

Tuition is set by the Washington state legislature and is subject to change without notice. For a current list of fees or other information, visit or contact the Vice President of Student Services’ Office.

This catalog was produced by the SVC Marketing and Communications Office, May 2018.

Skagit Valley College provides a drug free environment and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, disability, sexual orientation, or age in its programs and employment. The following person has been designated to handle inquiries regarding the nondiscrimination policies:

Executive Director of Human Resources
2405 East College Way,
Mount Vernon, WA 98273