Every new Whatcom Community College student and staff member will be issued an Orca ID card. Incorporated into the card is a smart chip and a magnetic strip that communicates with card-reader equipment. It uses contact-less technology, so a user only needs to bring it within a few inches of a reader for it to work. It has a bar code for library check outs and a magnetic strip to swipe for door access and purchasing.

It is the goal of the College to enable students, faculty and staff to use their Orca card to be identified as well as pay for many goods and services on and off campus. As a security measure, there will be no personal information stored on the Orca card. 


About the card

It's the way to pay for everything you need as a student. Orca cash is the convenient, cashless way to pay on and off campus.

It's a card that acts like a debit card where funds are deposited into an individual's, unique account. Funds are then drawn down as services or goods are purchased. It will also have a variety of sub-account categories in which funds can be deposited and designated for specific purchases. Unlike a debit card, cash cannot be withdrawn from the card. 

The Orca card is currently used as the official Student ID. It can be used for purchases at:

  • Vending machines
  • Campus printers and copy machines
  • The campus bookstore
  • The Dockside Cafe (Syre Student Center), Orca Bay Cafe (Heiner Center) and Kulshan Coffee Cart (Kulshan Hall)

It is also used to:

  • Check out library books and pay fines
  • Attend sporting and other events at Whatcom Community College

Orca cash actually makes your dollar worth more! Free prints are provided, discounts are given, and other incentives are offered, just for using your Orca card!


WTA passes

Show your Orca card at the WCC bookstore to get a discount bus pass!



The Orca card is the property of Whatcom Community College.

It is the student's responsibility to properly care for the Orca card. If the card is lost or stolen a $15 replacement fee will be charged. If the card is damaged, it will be replaced free of charge one time if the damaged card is presented to the card office (Office of Student Life and Development, Syre Student Center 208). Additional replacements due to external damage will be charged at a rate of $15. You may not punch a hole in the Orca card or alter it in any way as it will render the card useless.

If an error or discrepancy is discovered on the student's Orca card account, the student must notify the Orca card office immediately to resolve the issue. If the card is lost or stolen, the student must deactivate the card via the student's online account immediately or call the Office of Student Life and Development at 360.383.3007.

By activating the Orca card, the student agrees that he/she understands the intended uses of the card. He/she also understands the intended purpose of this card, its limitations and the restrictions upon which this card has been issued and agrees to ALL its terms and conditions. He/she also agrees to surrender the card to the College if the card is used in a way that is deceitful, illegal or for a purpose other than what was agreed to when the card was issued. The student also agrees to the terms and conditions outlined on this page or in the Office of Student Life and Development.



Deposits may be made online via MyWCC with a credit card (Visa and MasterCard) or with cash at the POD (Place of Deposit) stations located in Heiner Center and Syre Student Center. Support student success by making a guest deposit and providing funds for books and meals today! Parents and friends can make guest deposits to a student's account using the Orca card guest deposit feature which enables them to deposit money into a cardholder's Orca cash, bookstore, or dining dollars account. A parent or guest will need to enter the student's nine-digit Whatcom ID number and the student's last name to complete the process. Funds immediately available for deposits made by credit card or cash. Positive balances that remain on the Orca card debit accounts will roll over to the next term or year. Orca card account balances are non-interest bearing and there are no charges for using your Orca card debit account.


There will be no cash withdrawals or refunds from active Orca card accounts.



You can obtain a receipt every time you make a deposit to your Orca card. You will also receive a receipt of your transaction every time you use your account or use your Orca card account at one of the POD (Place of Deposit) terminals. Statements of account will be furnished upon request. You may also go online to view up to 30 days of transaction history.


Error resolution

Each time you use your Orca card, you have the ability to display your balance. If you believe that your balance is incorrect or your statement shows transactions you did not make, notify the Office of Student Life and Development at once at 360.383.3008 

If you fail to notify the Office of Student Life and Development within ten (10) days after the statement was mailed or given to you, and it can be proven that properly informing the Orca card office would have prevented further unapproved use of your Orca card account, the money lost after the ten (10) days may not be credited to your Orca card account. If a valid reason, such as a long trip or hospital stay, kept you from notifying the Orca card Office, the time period may be extended.

In any correspondence regarding your Orca card account:

  • Include your name and account number (student or employee ID number)
  • Describe the error or transaction in question including the date, time, and location where the error is reported to have occurred. Tell us the dollar amount if a transaction is involved
  • Explain as clearly as you can why you believe it is an error or why you need more information
  • Direct any questions to StudentLife@whatcom.ctc.edu


There are no limits on the number of transactions on your Orca card account. However, the dollar amount of your transactions may not exceed your current Orca card account balance. Overdrafts will not be possible. The maximum balance you may carry on your Orca card account is $1,000.

Student, faculty and staff accounts will be deactivated after four quarters of non-use. All inactive Orca card account balances will be held by WCC for at least two years. During this period, cardholders may request a refund of their balance. After two years, balances held will be turned over to the state of Washington as unclaimed property. Unclaimed property can be retrieved indefinitely by contacting the WA State Department of Revenue Office at 800.435.2429.


Lost, stolen or damaged cards

Your Orca card is the property of Whatcom Community College. It is your responsibility to take proper care of it. If your card is lost or stolen you will be charged a$15 replacement fee. If your card is damaged, it will be replaced the first time at no charge. You will be charged $15 for additional replacements due to damage. Do not punch a hole in your Orca card. Punching holes in the card to attach it to a key ring or lanyard or altering the card in any other way will render the card useless.

If you believe your Orca card has been lost or stolen, you must immediately inform the Office of Student Life and Develpment. You may contact them by phone at 360.383.3007 or by email at StudentLife@whatcom.ctc.edu. After proper ID verification, the Orca card office can suspend activity on your Orca card until it is found or replaced. If it is outside normal business hours, you may also deactivate your card by accessing your MyWCC account online. If you are able to prove that your card has been stolen by providing the Office of Student Life and Development with a police report, we will issue you one free replacement card.


Privacy policy

There will be no personal information stored on the Orca card.

Unless otherwise required by law, the Orca card office may not disclose information to third parties about your account or the transfers you make. The following exceptions may apply:

  • Where it is necessary for completing transfers; or,
  • In order to verify the existence and condition of your account for a third party; or,
  • If you give the Orca card office your written permission; or,
  • In order to comply with government agencies or court orders or to respond to any other compliance requirement

WCC is committed to ensuring compliance with the WCC Electronic Information Policy on Personally Identifiable Information.



Orca card account balances may be refunded upon written request only after a student has withdrawn from Whatcom. The request must include your name and Orca card account number (student or employee ID number), along with a current mailing address. You can stop by the Business Office, Laidlaw Center 141, and complete a refund form or send us an email from your WCC email account. All refunds are processed by check and will be issued within ten (10) business days of receipt of the written request. Account balances of less than $25 will not be refunded. If there are charges on an existing student's account, they must be paid before refunds are issued. Please note: we do not permit cash refunds or withdrawals.

Orca card accounts will be credited for the amount of merchandise returns paid for with the Orca card. Merchandise must be returned to the location where goods and services were purchased and returns are subject to the return policy of the merchant. Whatcom will not be responsible if any "off-campus" establishment refuses to honor the Orca card or for any other problem you may have with an establishment.

The Orca card debit account program reserves the right to make appropriate and agreed upon adjustments or corrections to the amounts assigned to each card. Any such adjustment or correction will be fully disclosed in your transaction summary.


Extending the life of your Orca Card

The technology that makes your Orca card work includes an antenna, electronic chip, and magnetic stripe. These are embedded into the card when it is manufactured. There are three primary reasons for your Orca card to stop working on electronically controlled doors:

  • Damage to the antenna or damage to the bond between the chip and the antenna will destroy the card. 
  • Exposing the card to electro static discharge (ESD) can damage the integrated circuit.
  • Strong magnetic fields can wipe out the programming on the card’s chip.

Your Orca card is intended to be used strictly for access control and identification purposes, including free prints, Orca cash, bonus bucks, dining dollars, bookstore funds and other specific uses at Whatcom Community College. When Orca cards fail, it is frequently the result of unintentional abuse by the card holder. Below is a list of common actions that damage a card:

  • Machine washing the card by accident when it is forgotten in a pocket of a shirt or pair of pants. 
  • Exposing the card to extreme heat (direct sunlight on the dash of your car, clothes dryer or iron). 
  • Punching a hole or slot in the card. 
  • Using the card as an ice scrapper for the windows of your vehicle. 
  • Bending, twisting or crimping the card. 
  • Exposing the card to chemicals including organic solvents, thinners, mineral spirits, alcohol, isopropyl, ethanol or methyl.


  • Can parents and guests contribute to a student's Orca card?
  • I have been admitted to Whatcom. Can I go ahead and get my Orca card?
  • Can I get money off of my card?
  • If my card is lost, stolen or damaged, do I have to pay for a new one?
  • If I am only taking online classes, do I need an ORCA card?
  • What is a POD machine?
  • How do I make a deposit to my Orca card account?
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