WorkFirst Training

"A job, a better job, a better life."

  • Are you receiving a Temporary Assistance for Needy Families cash grant (TANF) from DSHS?WA Workfirst logo.gif
  • Are you interested in gaining skills for better employment opportunities?
  • Do you need financial help with books and tuition?

Welcome to the WorkFirst at WCC

WorkFirst is Washington's temporary cash assistance program for low-income families. WorkFirst provides families the services and supports they need to "get a job, get a better job and have a better life!"

WorkFirst is designed to assist low income parents in achieving their educational and employment goals. Qualified students may be eligible to receive services in educational planning, financial assistance for tuition, fees, and books for professional/technical and basic skills training. Customized job skills training options are available. WorkFirst Work Study positions may be available on a limited basis. WorkFirst Tuition Assistance is designed to be linked to a specific career ladder and to lead to better skills and higher wages.

Tuition Assistance may be available to WorkFirst participants to attend Whatcom Community College, if they are receiving TANF benefits and have been referred for education and training by DSHS or another WorkFirst partner agency.


You Must Be:

  • A parent of a child 18 years or younger
  • Currently receiving TANF, Cash Assistance from DSHS. TANF stands for: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
  • Approved for education or training by your DSHS WorkFirst Program Specialist (case manager)

Educational Programs Available:

Job Skills Training
Short term training includes part-time professional/technical coursework, prerequisite classes for professional/technical certificates, computer training, upgrade current job skills, improve English and math skills, and career exploration.

Vocational Education
WorkFirst parents can also enroll in 12-month Vocational Education or High Wage/ High Demand programs at Whatcom Community College.

Law & Justice (click "+" for list)
CJST - Customized Job Skills Training (click "+" for list)
IBEST (click

Basic Education

This program is designed to help students improve their fundamental skills for work-related purposes and educational endeavors. Students have the opportunity to earn their GED, prepare to enter degree programs or professional/technical training classes, receive literacy and language instruction and obtain guidance in discovering their interests and abilities to prepare for professional and personal success.

For more information contact:

WorkFirst Administration Office

Whatcom Community College
Laidlaw 134B

Megan Dougherty, Ed Planner / Student Support Coordinator
Monique Stefens, Educational Planner
Barbara Leveque, Director

Hot link to attendance form:

Links to other Community Resources:

Whatcom Community College

237 W. Kellogg Road, Bellingham, WA 98226

(360) 383-3000

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