Whitman College

A view of the Whitman College campus on a spring day

Indeed, when asked what kind of person should come here, the first thing a Whitman student is likely to say is, ‘If you’re not willing to get involved, don’t bother to come here.’ By ‘involved’ that student would mean in one’s studies, with one another, with teachers, and in campus life.”
Colleges That Change Lives

Whitman College is currently welcoming students and their families to campus for visits with COVID-19 protocols, based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines. Learn more about visiting Whitman College.

Whitman College
345 Boyer Avenue
Walla Walla, Washington 99362
509.527.5176 / 877.462.9448
⋅ 1,579 students
⋅ 9:1 student-to-faculty ratio
⋅ Average class size: 18
⋅ 74% attended public high schools
⋅ Multicultural/International students make up 34.5% of the entering class:
– 34.5% multicultural/international students
– 6.1% Asian
– 2.4% Black/African American
– 9% Hispanic
– 10.2% international
– 6.8% two or more races
– 3.2% unknown
Whitman’s comprehensive student budget includes tuition, student association fees, standard room (assuming double occupancy) and board, and an estimated amount for books and incidental expenses:
⋅ Tuition: $55,560
⋅ Nearly 90% of students received financial assistance in 2020-21, and the average award was $48,865.
Merit scholarships of up to $25,000 are awarded to high-achieving students.

A Whitman College student plays the piano

Whitman College students walk across campus on an autumn day

Whitman College students work with their professor in a science lab

Whitman College students play intramural sports together

Whitman College students in a color run

  • Whitman is an independent, co-educational, non-sectarian, residential, liberal arts and sciences undergraduate college.
  • Whitman received its charter as a four-year, degree-granting college in 1883.
  • Historic Walla Walla, recently named ‘Friendliest Town in America,’ is in the scenic, sunny southeastern corner of Washington, 3 hours from Spokane, 4 from Portland and 4.5 hours from Seattle.

Worth Noting
  • Whitman College’s 88% graduation rate is one of the highest west of the Mississippi River.
  • The Princeton Review’s annual The Best Colleges publication consistently gives high rankings to Whitman for Professors Get High Marks, Best College Theater, Everyone Plays Intramural Sports, Best Classroom Experience, School Runs Like Butter, Happiest Students, Best College Radio Station, Best Quality of Life, Lots of Race/Class Interaction, and Class Discussions Are Encouraged.
  • More than 40 percent of alumni contribute annually to the annual fund. The percentage of alumni financial support places Whitman among the top 3 colleges in the West.
  • In the past ten years Whitman students have won 1 Rhodes Scholarship, 62 Fulbright Scholarships, 25 National Science Foundation and 12 Watson Fellowships. During this period numerous Truman, Udall, Beinicke, Goldwater,  Princeton in Asia, Africa and Latin America Fellowships; and German, Spanish and French Assistantships  have been garnered by Whitman graduates.

Faculty & Academics
  • 92% of full-time faculty hold the most advanced degree in their field; there are no teaching assistants.
  • We have 51 majors, plus three combined programs (engineering, oceanography and forestry/environmental management), and 35 minors.
  • Combined programs in engineering (with California Institute of Technology, Columbia University, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of Washington), oceanography (with University of Washington), forestry, and environmental management (with Duke).

Areas of Study
For the most current listings, please check the college website.

Anthropology – Environmental Studies
Art – Environmental Studies
Art History and Visual Culture Studies
Asian Studies and Middle Eastern Studies
Biochemistry, Biophysics & Molecular Biology
Biology – Environmental Studies
Biology – Geology
Chemistry – Environmental Studies
Chemistry – Geology
Classical Studies
Computer Science
Economics – Environmental Studies
Economics – Mathematics
Engineering (3-2 Combined Plan)
Environmental Humanities
Film and Media Studies
French and Francophone Studies
Gender Studies
Geology – Astronomy
Geology – Environmental Studies
Geology – Physics
German Studies
Hispanic Studies
History – Environmental Studies
Physics – Astronomy
Physics – Environmental Studies
Politics – Environmental Studies
Race and Ethnic Studies
Rhetoric, Writing and Public Discourse
Sociology – Environmental Studies
Theatre and Dance

Campus Life
  • 67% of students live on campus.
  • 70% of students volunteer.
  • More than 22 music groups and ensembles; 8 theatre productions staged per year.
  • NCAA Division III, Northwest Conference, 8 varsity teams for men and 9 for women.
  • The men’s and women’s road cycling, Ultimate Frisbee and Alpine and Nordic ski teams regularly compete in national championships. In 2013-2014 the women’s Basketball team took 2nd place in the NCAA Division III National Championships, and men’s and women’s Tennis teams and individuals competed in Regional and National NCAA Division III Championships. Individual swimmers competed in the National Championships, highlighted by junior Karl Mering’s 1st place finish in the 100 yard butterfly and 3rd place finish in the 200 yard butterfly. Whitney Rich placed 4th in the 2019 NCAA Division III Women’s Cross Country Championship, the highest finish of any runner (men’s or women’s) in program history.
  • Recent speakers on campus have included Robert Reich, former U.S. Secretary of Labor; Hedrick Smith, New York Times journalist and author of “The Stolen Dream: Did We Miss the Big Story;” U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell; Tim O’Brien, author of The Things They Carried; Ben Stein, award-winning TV personality; Eric Schlosser, Author of Fast Food Nation; Donald Hall, U.S. Poet Laureate; Saul Williams, award-winning Slam Poet; Judy Shepard, Matthew Shepard Endowed Lecture Series; Anne E. Pusey, Director of the Jane Goodall Institute for Primate Studies; Bruce Babbitt, Former Secretary of the Interior; Daniel Ellsberg, “Pentagon Papers” Activist; William Shultz, Director of Amnesty Int’l; Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., Environmental Lawyer; Ralph Nader, Political Activist; Juan Williams, Author and Journalist; Sherman Alexie, noted Native American author and Diane Rehm, NPR News Personality. Monty Python humorist Eric Idle spoke at Whitman’s 2013 commencement and had the privilege of presenting his daughter with her diploma.
  • Recent concerts include Death Cab for Cutie, Pink Martini, Guster, Maroon 5, Ben Folds, O.A.R., and Reel Big Fish.

Varsity Sports

NCAA Division III, Northwest Athletic Conference:

Baseball (Men)
Cross Country
Distance Track
Lacrosse (Women)
Volleyball (Women)

Life After College
  • Whitman College is known for graduating ethical leaders. Whitman currently ranks in the top 15 colleges nationwide for Peace Corps volunteers and the top 20 colleges in Teach for America participants. In the past ten years Whitman students have won 1 Rhodes Scholarship, 62 Fulbright Scholarships, 25 National Science Foundation and 12 Watson Fellowships. During this period numerous Truman, Udall, Beinicke, Goldwater,  Princeton in Asia, Africa and Latin America Fellowships; and German, Spanish and French Assistantships have been garnered by Whitman graduates.
  • Seventy percent of Whitman graduates further their formal education: In medical school at Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Johns Hopkins, University of California at San Francisco and University of Chicago; in law schools at Duke, Georgetown, Harvard, Northwestern, Stanford, University of Pennsylvania and Yale; in business at University of California at Berkeley, Dartmouth, Harvard, Northwestern, Stanford, and University of Virginia. “Whitties” are passionate life-long learners.

Academic Profile of Entering Class
  • Median GPA: 3.76 unweighted
  • Middle 50% SAT Reading & Writing: 630-720
  • Middle 50% SAT Math: 645-730
  • Middle 50% ACT score: 29-32
  • 19.63% are First Generation college students
  • 28.35% are students of color
  • 40.5% male, 59.5% female