Basic Needs

Western Washington University, in support of its mission, values and goals, strives to provide access to basic needs for its students. The Office of Student Life, working with other key University services, seeks to support students in need and provide or connect them with essential resources, on and off campus. Basic needs is defined as the resources that address food security, housing stability, and financial sustainability.

Students can visit the Office of Student Life's website for more information about on and off campus basic needs resources in addition to those listed below.  

Basic Needs Resources

The WWU Associated Students Child Development Center (CDC) participates in the State's Early Achiever's Quality Rating and Improvement program. They provide high quality care and education for children of student parents and working professionals of Western Washington University. Tuition for student families is based on income and is subsidized by the Associated Students. The CDC serves 56 children ages 2-5 each quarter. The program manager and teaching staff provide a safe and healthy environment for young children, supporting the social/emotional, physical, and intellectual growth of each child.

The CDC also supports students interested in careers in early childhood education by providing a place for service learning projects, classroom observations, practicum and internship experiences as well as educational outreach activities. Parents benefit from special events for the entire family and participation in a parent advisory board. The CDC is not only child centered, but family centered, meeting the special needs of student parents and welcoming parent involvement in the center.

For more resources and support for Western students who are parents, see the Viking Family section in the Viking Resource Hub

Western strives to reduce financial barriers to learning by providing students with financial assistance to help pay for their educational expenses. On and off campus resources are available to help students in need of food and shelter care. 

Students can apply for Western's emergency fund scholarship (Student Emergency Fund toward the bottom of the page) that provides assistance to help WWU students alleviate or minimize an unforeseen financial burden, including financial emergencies related to COVID-19. Examples of eligible needs may include housing expenses, childcare, medical or dental expenses, transportation/travel expense, unpaid student account charges and technology needs related to online coursework for the quarter.


The AS Western Hub of Living Essentials (WHOLE) provides free food, as well as toiletries to Western students experiencing food insecurity and who need hygiene products. WHOLE is located in the Viking Union, room 435, and has the same hours of operation as the Viking Union. WHOLE operates as a self-service pantry. 

As a matter of University policy, students are expected to attend classes as scheduled. However, subject to acceptable documentation, a Non-Medical Leave of Absence may be granted through the Office of Student Life. More information.

If a student is unable to attend classes because of an injury or illness, a Medical Leave of Absence may be requested through the Student Health Center. A medical leave of absence will not be granted without proper diagnosis and/or documentation. For further details, see the Student Health Center's Medical Leave of Absence page or contact the Student Health Center: Campus Services Building 202, (360)

Previous Western students who have not been enrolled for one or more quarters (excluding Summer) need to reapply for admission. Review the Admissions website to learn more about reapplying due to scholastic reinstatement, leave of absence, or other special circumstances. 

For more information, contact the Office of Admissions: Old Main 200, 360-650-3440, admissions@wwu.edu