About Heritage University
Heritage University is a fully-accredited, private institution offering a wide array of academic programs and degrees. It is grounded in the belief that a college education should be accessible to anyone with the talent and drive to pursue a degree; regardless of economics, culture, or geographic locations.
Students at Heritage University enjoy a world-class, multi-cultural education and personalized attention. Classes are small, averaging only 11 students in each class. Professors are skilled practitioners with ties deep in their respective fields.
Heritage University makes it possible to earn a college degree near where you live and work. Many undergraduate courses are offered during the evenings and graduate courses are offered on the weekends. In addition to the main campus located in Toppenish, Washington, five regional sites in Moses Lake, Wenatchee, Tri-Cities, South Seattle, and Yakima bring classes closer to students.
Heritage University is a non-profit, independent, non-denominational accredited institution of higher education offering undergraduate and graduate education. Its mission is to provide quality, accessible higher education to multicultural populations which have been educationally isolated. Within its liberal arts curriculum, Heritage offers strong professional and career-oriented programs designed to enrich the quality of life for students and their communities.
Heritage University is unique in its origins. Originally known as Heritage College, the school was founded as a successor to Spokane's Fort Wright College (formerly Holy Names College).
Fort Wright College was founded in 1907 by the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary.
A new institution was born in 1981 through a change in name, location of administrative offices, ownership and sponsorship. Under the impetus of two Yakama Nation women, leaders from business, religious and education communities in the Yakima Valley incorporated as Heritage College so they could acquire the outreach programs that Fort Wright College operated in Omak and Toppenish.
On July 1, 1982, the transition to Heritage College became official. The new institution began offering undergraduate and graduate degrees as an independent, non-profit college. Its main campus was established near Toppenish, with satellite campuses in Spokane and Omak. In 1987, the Spokane campus closed and its students moved to the Toppenish campus.
Over the years, Heritage has partnered with various educational and community organizations to bring higher education to isolated populations. In 1988, for instance, Heritage opened a satellite graduate teacher education program for the outlying islands of Hawaii. This program operated through the summer of 2001.
Currently, numerous school district sites throughout the state of Washington are used to deliver Heritage University’s Master of Education program, as well as several undergraduate programs. Our regional sites include Tri-Cities, Yakima, South Seattle, Wenatchee, and Moses Lake. These sites are monitored and approved by the Northwest Association of Schools and Colleges.
Heritage College became Heritage University in August 2004, a change that reflects our ever-increasing impact on students’ lives and our communities. Heritage continues to help students achieve their full potential by making higher education accessible for everyone.