WorkFirst

WorkFirst is Washington’s Temporary Assistance program for Needy Families (TANF). The Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) is the entry point for WorkFirst participants. WorkFirst funding typically covers the career training programs that are one year in length or shorter, as well as GED or high school completion. Your DSHS case manager will need to approve your program of study. Services include:

  • Assistance with tuition and purchasing of books
  • WorkFirst WorkStudy (Paid work experience  on- or off-campus where available. See your advisor for details.)
  • Educational planning and advising

WorkFirst participants must apply for federal financial aid (complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid - FAFSA) and be enrolled in one of the following programs:

  • Approved professional or technical program (transfer degree programs are not eligible)
  • English as a Second Language (ESL)
  • Adult Basic Education (ABE)
  • GED preparation

Getting Started

  1. Speak to your DSHS case manager about your interest in attending Seattle Central College. You will need an electronic referral from your DSHS case manager.
  2. To find out if you qualify for WorkFirst or other tuition assistance programs, take a brief survey through Start Next Quarter (follow link at bottom of this page).
  3. Contact your college’s worker retraining coordinator and tell them you are a WorkFirst participant.

More Information

Start Next Quarter - student at computer

Take the free Start Next Quarter survey. There is no obligation to follow through. Your responses remain anonymous unless you decide you want to do more. If you pre-qualify, you will be invited to attend a free education planning workshop where we will confirm your eligibility and help you determine your next steps.


Please use our feedback form to send us comments, recommendations, or corrections.