CWU News

CWU-Des Moines Partners with Highline College to Launch Computer Science Program

Student using a computer in computer lab.

Capitalizing on the long-standing partnership between Central Washington University and Highline College, CWU-Des Moines has announced that it will be launching a new undergraduate Bachelor of Science computer science program in January 2022.

Designed to address the strong demand for computer science professionals in the greater Seattle area, the new program seeks to prepare more CWU students for careers in the Northwest technology industry.

With a growing number of high-paying positions available every year, the affordable, accessible program will provide students with the resources and experience they need to prepare for careers in a highly competitive industry.

Lauren Hibbs, executive director of the CWU University Centers, noted that the collaboration between CWU and Highline mirrors an ongoing trend in Washington.

“There is a capacity issue within Washington higher education in terms of educating and graduating computer scientists,” Hibbs said. “We’re going to be able to expand that capacity, and give more access to folks who may not be able to attend the other institutions.”

College of the Sciences Dean Tim Englund added that the program will work in tandem with Highline College to provide an easy-to-navigate next step for students who have earned their associate’s degree.

“We’re trying to make it a seamless transition, where a student will complete courses at Highline and remain on campus to transfer to CWU-Des Moines,” Englund said. “That’s going to be a lot better from a student perspective.”

CWU has been training computer science professionals for more than 40 years, and recently was the first high education institution in Washington approved to offer a computer science education endorsement.

Ediz Kaykayoglu, CWU’s dean of Extended and Global Education, said the partnership will pave the way for a new generation of locally-eduacted computer scientists to join Seattle’s booming tech industry.

“The demand for new computer science-trained professionals is higher than what the greater Seattle area can produce,” Kaykayoglu said. “This is why this relationship is unique, in that it allows us to offer students already interested in an associate’s degree the opportunity to join a rapidly expanding job market with a Bachelors degree in hand.”

More information can be found on the program's website.

Media contact: Rune Torgersen, Department of Public Affairs,