Academic Programs, Institutes, and Centers
Amplify Your Degree
Western’s university-wide Academic Programs, Institutes, and Centers (APICs) exist to leverage, support, and develop connections across traditional academic boundaries. By working together to promote inclusion across disciplines, we benefit Western students, as well as on- and off-campus communities. APICs aim to inspire, build synergies for success, and strengthen each other through a collaborative and convivial culture. We achieve our goals through co-creative and dynamic strategies, outreach, programming, and partnership.
Border Policy Research Institute
Western established The Border Policy Research Institute (BPRI) in 2005 to further a mission of promoting research, academic programs, and public programming on critical policy issues affecting the Cascadia region. BPRI is a multi-disciplinary institute that undertakes research to inform policy-makers on matters related to the Canada-U.S. border, particularly in the British Columbia-Washington State region. Priority focus areas include trade, transportation, economic relationships, human mobility, and border security. BPRI works closely with cognate programs at Western and collaborates with many public and private entities within the region.
Center for Canadian-American Studies
The Center for Canadian-American Studies, in consortium with its counterpart at the University of Washington, is one of just two U.S. Department of Education National Resource Centers for the Study of Canada. The Center offers comprehensive interdisciplinary majors and minors for undergraduates, fosters research on Canadian topics, organizes seminars and symposia on current Canada-U.S. public policy issues, sponsors events highlighting Canadian culture, and conducts the nationally recognized STUDY CANADA program for K-12 educators.
Offers B.A. in Canadian-American Studies and Canadian-American Studies Minor.
Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programs
Western's Entrepreneurship and Innovation Programs promote multi-purpose, interdisciplinary entrepreneurship and innovation minor options for any student from any college, combined with the focus of their studies. This set of interdisciplinary programs is designed to provide the knowledge, skills and abilities to successfully engage in entrepreneurial and innovative behaviors in new and existing organizations.
Offers Entrepreneurship Minor.Learn more about Academic Programs in Entrepreneurship and Innovation
East Asian Studies
The Center for East Asian Studies provides opportunities for an interdisciplinary study of East Asia, with a primary focus on the countries of China and Japan. Offering a BA and a Minor in in East Asian Studies, the Center’s East Asian Studies Program is designed to attain three major objectives: offering students an opportunity to acquire accurate, detailed, and comprehensive knowledge of a region that is becoming increasingly important in world affairs; preparing students who are attracted by job opportunities related to East Asia in business, government, or teaching; and providing solid undergraduate training for students who plan to enter East Asian programs in their graduate studies.
The major offers students an opportunity to prepare for positions in cultural organizations, diplomatic offices, companies engaged in international business, and in educational institutions.
Institute for Energy Studies
The Institute for Energy Studies is a unique, multi-college collaboration that offers interdisciplinary undergraduate degrees to address the science, technology, policy, business and economic aspects of energy systems. Our interdisciplinary programs are designed to meet the future workforce needs of Washington’s emerging energy economy, which emphasizes clean energy technology, energy efficiency, smart systems, environmental mitigation and entrepreneurial solutions.
Offers B.S. in Energy Science and Technology, B.A. in Energy Policy and Management, Energy Science Minor, Energy Policy Minor, and Energy Concentrations in Electrical Engineering and in Business & Sustainability
Institute for Global Engagement
The Institute for Global Engagement provides internationally-focused educational experiences that prepare students to be global citizens and supports faculty and staff who are engaged inter-culturally. IGE works with academic programs to integrate global perspectives into the curriculum and collaborates with international partners to connect with institutions and individuals in other parts of the world. IGE also advises students who participate in education abroad through faculty-led programs, service-learning or internship opportunities, study programs, and exchanges. In addition, the Institute provides visa and immigration services, as well as orientation and co-curricular activities, to Western’s international students and visiting scholars.
Offers International Studies Minor.
Marine and Coastal Science
The B.S. in Marine and Coastal Science is an interdisciplinary program with permanent and affiliated faculty in units across the university, drawing together the wealth of marine expertise in the Biology, Geology and Environmental Sciences departments and at the Shannon Point Marine Center. The mission of MACS is to promote the study of marine systems with an emphasis on place-based learning, early exposure to research, and cohort-based, immersive educational experiences. The goal of the program is to help students develop into confident, thoughtful, ethical scientists ready to address the growing challenges affecting our marine and coastal environments.
Offers a BS in Marine and Coastal Science
Morse Leadership Institute
The Morse Leadership Institute provides a variety of support mechanisms and opportunities for students across Western’s campus to develop as leaders. These include a broad spectrum of leadership studies courses, applied and global leadership opportunities, community engagement, peer and professional mentoring, support for students’ participation in academic conferences and professional development opportunities, and campus events and programs.
The Institute supports campus partners who provide curricular, co-curricular, and extra-curricular opportunities aimed at student leadership learning so that all WWU students can engage in their desired social and professional change efforts. While the Institute provides a minor in Leadership Studies, students from any department of program on campus may take many courses offered by the Institute
Offers Leadership Studies Minor.
Office of Sustainability
The Office of Sustainability is Western’s hub for campus sustainability. The “OS” is dedicated to helping WWU achieve its strategic goal of campus sustainability by integrating sustainability into operations, academics, research, and outreach. For example, the OS works with Western’s executive management and Sustainability Committee to identify campus sustainability goals and manages projects and programs to achieve those goals. They also work to integrate sustainability into WWU’s academics by facilitating faculty, staff, and students to research aspects of campus sustainability.
Ray Wolpow Institute
The Ray Wolpow Institute for the Study of the Holocaust, Genocide, and Crimes Against Humanity was created to advance knowledge about the Holocaust and genocide, including ethnic and religious conflict, as well as attendant human rights abuses. Students engaged in studying the Holocaust, genocide, and crimes against humanity will be provided with the critical tools to analyze, understand, and differentiate their underlying complexities and to work towards their prevention.
Offers Holocaust and Genocide Studies Minor.
Salish Sea Institute
The Salish Sea Institute is an interdisciplinary center for collaboration, education, research, and community involvement focused on the health of the Salish Sea, the body of water encompassing the Strait of Georgia, Puget Sound, and the Strait of Juan de Fuca. The Salish Sea basin and the people who inhabit it have much to share with each other, and the Institute, as an intentionally collaborative effort, aims to bring these diverse groups together in transboundary initiatives of all types to facilitate this sharing. The Salish Sea Institute is also the administrative home for the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference, the Salish Sea Studies minor and several programs relating to the health of the Salish Sea.
Offers Salish Sea Studies Minor.
SEA Discovery Center
Western's SEA Discovery Center is dedicated to inspiring a deeper sense of understanding and stewardship of the marine environment. Physically located in Poulsbo, Washington, the SEA Discovery Center functions as a aquarium, learning center, and educational resource for the surrounding community