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Seattle Promise Staff
Contact Information:

Phone:  (206)934-7980

Seattle Promise

Open the door to your future with a free year of college

The Seattle Promise scholarship program (formerly the 13th Year Promise Scholarship) provides all graduating seniors from Chief Sealth International, Cleveland, Rainier Beach and West Seattle High Schools with one year of FREE in-state tuition and support services at South Seattle College.

Take advantage of the scholarship, dive into your studies, and focus on finding an educational path that leads to a career you love.


Seattle Promise – A partnership with Seattle Colleges, Seattle School District and the City of Seattle to build a thriving, college-going culture, and a local workforce ready for our region’s careers.

Program History: How South’s 13th Year Promise Scholarship Became the Seattle Promise Tuition Program

The Seattle Promise is an evolution of the South Seattle College’s 13th Year Promise Scholarship, which has provided hundreds of students at Cleveland, Rainer Beach, Chief Sealth International and West Seattle high schools with tuition assistance and college preparation support since 2008.

The 13th Year Promise Scholarship was started by the South Seattle College Foundation, based on research from the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges that demonstrates a high school diploma and one year of college is the critical “tipping point” for students to earn living wage jobs and/or continue his or her education.

13th Year started offering graduating seniors from Cleveland High School with one year of free in-state tuition in 2008, and expanded to include Chief Sealth International High School in 2011 and Rainier Beach High School in 2014. In 2011, the Readiness Academy was implemented to further increase student success by supporting students in their transition from high school to college.

Traditionally funded through private donations to the South Seattle College Foundation, the City of Seattle invested in the program in 2017 and 2018 to help further expand the program. Through that support, Seattle Central College and North Seattle College started offering the scholarship and students from West Seattle, Garfield and Ingraham high schools were invited to take part.

The expansion of the 13th Year program into the Seattle Promise stemmed from an Executive Order issued by Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan in November 2017, requesting that the Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL) work to provide current 13th Year students an additional year of support in 2018-19 and to conduct the policy and fiscal analysis to expand the program moving forward.

The First Ten Years: 13th Year/Seattle Promise Scholarship Statistics from 2008-2018


The 13th Year Promise Scholarship provided access to college for a diverse community. Data reflects the unique Seattle community and college participation in a variety of college programs. Cohorts 2018


Students in the 13th Year program continued into their second quarter and second year of college at higher rates than the overall student body at South Seattle College. Retention 2018

Program Participation

Students in the 13th Year program participated in 27 different types of postsecondary programs at South Seattle College. Participation 2018

Transfers and Completion

Students in the 13th Year program completed certificate and degree programs and transferred into two- and four-year institutions to continue their postsecondary education. Transfers and Completion 2018