Facts & Figures

Year Founded:


50 associate degrees, 76 professional certificates, 12 associate of applied science-transferable and 18 apprenticeship programs 

Highest Enrolled Programs

Our Students

Total Headcount (all sources): 6,729
FTE's (all sources): 3,451

Gender: 52% female, 48% male

Median Age: 31


Asian/Pacific Islander
African American
Native American
Other, Multiracial

Family and Finances

Students receiving need-based financial aid (2014-2015): 42%
Students who work:
Students with Children
: 56%


Tacoma is Washington state's third largest city with a population approximately 200,000.
Bates operates on three urban campuses, with over 600,000 square feet of classrooms, shops, meeting rooms, and offices.

Points of Interest

Aerospace and Advanced Manufacturing

Bates Technical College has a long legacy of aerospace education. For 75 years, we have provided our region with accessible, affordable and quality education programs that lead students to careers, and employers to well-trained employees. In 1940, the Tacoma School District opened the Tacoma Vocational School and, in an effort to support the defense effort for World War II, a cluster of programs named industrial education were offered. This included auto body repair, auto mechanic, diesel and heavy equipment mechanic, electrical construction, machinist, sheet metal, and welding. Within 18 months of opening, more than 3,000 people received training that led to jobs in the shipyards, mills and Boeing's airplane plant. Today, these programs still remain strong and relevant, and they help fuel the region's important aerospace industry.   

Student Success

Bates Technical College enriches our diverse communities by inspiring student learning, challenging greater achievement, and educating for employment. In response to community needs, we are expanding our Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training (I-BEST) program, to help facilitate rapid competency mastery and progression into the workforce. Nationally accredited, the I-BEST model uses a team-teaching approach to combine college-readiness classes with our hands-on competency based classes. Students of all abilities are able to accelerate their studies and prepare to enter the workforce with confidence.   

National Accreditations

Bates Technical College is embarking on a strategic initiative to nationally accredit every career training program over the next three to five years. Many of our programs already hold national or regional accreditations. These accreditations demonstrate the academic rigor and excellence of our programs.