University of Washington Reviews

Updated July 29, 2015
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3.9
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University of Washington President Michael K. Young
Michael K. Young
156 Ratings

Pros
  • Commitment to work/life balance (in 44 reviews)

  • Great benefits - continue your education for free (in 46 reviews)

Cons
  • Low salary, demanding hours and lack of task variety (in 18 reviews)

  • Pay is competitive with other non-profits; not competitive with the private sector (but that's to be expected) (in 14 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

829 Employee Reviews

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  1. Good place for a part-time teaching job.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Instructor in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Instructor in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    The Fund-Raising Management Certificate Program offers interesting teaching opportunities, diverse students (a wide range of age and experience, especially), expert colleagues, and flexibility. Instructors are given a free hand to teach what and how they think best (though of course we do let the administration know what we're doing). The students are interested, enthusiastic, and bring a lot of their own life experiences to bear on the curriculum. As adults, they ask questions, don't just accept everything the instructor says, and have lively discussions. I've been teaching in this program for eight years, and every class I've had has formed strong social bonds among themselves. The last class is always a little sad for me, because it's hard to say goodbye to this enthusiastic group of people.

    Cons

    As a part-time, part-year contract position, this is not a way to make a living wage. I'm not sure how the pay compares to similar jobs at other universities, but we instructors are not in it for the money. All the instructors have "day jobs" in the field they teach in--which is a bonus for the students, of course. The facilities could be improved--we're always lobbying for better rooms. The scheduling and program change every year, which means constantly reworking the curriculum.

    Advice to Management

    They're doing pretty well, especially with Mary Larson as administrator. I appreciate the many opportunities for feedback with the administration.


  2. Top notch research, outdoors, city life, and West Coast.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Graduate Student in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Graduate Student in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO
    Recommends
    No opinion of CEO

    Pros

    The UW provides an excellent area to live around and is a top notch academic center. Being the premier research university in the pacific northwest it attracts the brightest students of the region and some from elsewhere. Smaller schools and regional business have an excellent incentive to interact,collaborate, and sponsor. There are plenty of entertainment and dinning options in both the immediate area and the broader Seattle metropolitan region. The culture of the city blends well with a liberal political view, but gives an outdoorsman closer adventure options then the big universities in the east and California. The quality of research is world class, while the attitude is West Coast relaxed.

    Cons

    This is still a big university, therefore one person is but a number in the books. One end does not know where the other tail is. While everybody is real relaxed the competitions play out hidden even deeper. It's easy to get lost on campus walking around or looking for your future.

    Advice to Management

    Play down the research university as a business image. The amazing growth and drive for research dollars does not equal respect of the alumni abroad. The primary image should be academics, education, sports pride. Patents should be less important than the contribution of knowledge.


  3. The University of Washington is THE ideal place to fulfill your dreams and enrich your career!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Manager, Departmental Computing in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Manager, Departmental Computing in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    We have three beautiful campuses with a new one in development, we are famous for our cutting-edge research and technology, our outstanding faculty are recognized leaders in their field around the world, we are led by outstanding leadership, we greatly enjoy strong support financially from the state legislature, we are provided with unparalleled medical/dental and retirement plans, we have all government holidays off (paid) and generous vacation allotments, we also are provided with fully subsidized bus passes which save us a lot of money at the fuel pump and are valid on all the regional public transportation organizations. The people in the University of Washington are also of the highest caliber.

    Cons

    There is no downside at the UW!

    Advice to Management

    The current leadership trends are ideal for leading the University into the next foreseeable decade.


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  5. Helpful (1)

    The Univ.of WA is a great place to work.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Program Coordinator in Seattle, WA
    Former Employee - Program Coordinator in Seattle, WA

    I worked at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The UW is one of the most respected public universities in the USA, and many of the programs are recognized internationally. The university's reputation adds a level of prestige that I don't think is necessarily true for other public universities. Also, the benefits I was afforded, including excellent health benefits, the UW retirement plan and tuition reimbursement made going to work quite bearable. Seattle is a beautiful place to live and work, and I would highly recommend the city and university to anyone considering moving there. The opportunities for outdoor activities, cultural events and the pleasant weather (it's really not that rainy!) make it a great place to live.

    Cons

    As in other university settings, sometimes faculty members assume administrative/managerial roles when these type of non-teaching/non-research roles really aren't their strengths. For example, the faculty member who was my boss really detested administrative and managerial tasks and responsibilities, which obviously led to a less-than-ideal situation.

    Advice to Management

    Offer managerial training to faculty members who assume managerial roles. And don't appoint faculty members with no managerial skills to managerial positions. General common sense.


  6. Helpful (1)

    A great place for students to work part-time.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Bike Shop Manager in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Bike Shop Manager in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    The people are very friendly, and it's a great place to work as a student. For building up a resume, you really can't beat it. Specifically, I worked in the Bike Shop as the manager and got great experience while maintaining flexible hours to keep my academic priorities in line.

    Cons

    The bureaucracy can be extremely annoying to go through in order to get things done. It takes a lot of time for new ideas to become actionable.

    Advice to Management

    There needs to be more efficiency in the entire process. Shorten the length of time it takes for laws, rules, regulations, etc. to go through all the levels of management.


  7. Helpful (2)

    A University is more than just science and engineering

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Professor in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Professor in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Opportunity to build on my graduate school training and to develop as a teacher and a researcher. Encouragement and support for new initiatives and controversial ideas. Excellent and supportive atmosphere. Opportunity to work with people of various and diverse backgrounds and perspectives.

    Cons

    The only downside is the low level of salaries in comparison with other occupations, but also from discipline to discipline. Sciences and Engineering pay good salaries, while faculty in the humanities have relatively low salaries. Nine month salary payment structure provides three months off in the summer, BUT it is without pay. One must budget carefully to make it from June to September every year.

    Advice to Management

    Get into the classroom from time to time and out of their administrative cacoon. Remember that the University is more than just intercollegiate football and science. It is also the study of literature and foreign languages and cultures


  8. Helpful (1)

    Great employer, despite current economic downturn and expected reductions in staffing.

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Communications Specialist in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Communications Specialist in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Opportunities for promotion and movement within the University. Benefits are generous, and colleagues are team-oriented and supportive, depending on the department. A mix of those with a great deal of university-based experience as well as staff recruited from outside of academia. There are continued calls for staff to apply for trainings and join departmental and inter-departmental committees on a variety of issues.

    Cons

    Salary levels are low, particularly in comparison to other universities.

    Advice to Management

    More professional development and training for managers, prior to their promotions. Many are ill-equipped to manage their own staff well.


  9. Good place to work

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Recommends

    Pros

    The University is an exciting place to work with really interesting people to work with. It is ever changing and never boring.

    Cons

    Due to budget cuts the last year has been disappointing and staff are feeling over loaded.

    Advice to Management

    Remember employees are your greatest asset.


  10. Great benefits, Great workplace, So-so pay

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Fiscal Specialist I in Seattle, WA
    Current Employee - Fiscal Specialist I in Seattle, WA

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Excellent Benefits, the best I've seen so far. Including; 401k/retirement funds, health and dental, all is above par. They even subsidize bus and "occasional parking" costs for employees. They offer all sorts of counciling and access to great professional development through courses designed to help you move up within the university. Relaxed atmosphere, everyone is helpful and understanding. Best management I've ever had, couldn't be happier. Very easy to move around from department and positions, everyone understands the desire for an upward career, even management will help you move on to better positions.

    Cons

    Low pay considering the required qualifications and education of nearly all positions. Strange rules and regulations regarding safety that can annoy some employees, c'mon I want to have my own coffee maker at work. Horrible parking, it is either very expensive or nonexistent based on which site you work at.

    Advice to Management

    Management has done excellent so far, I can't see anywhere they could improve that would not go against state/federal laws.


  11. Beats looking for a job in this market!

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Teaching Assistant
    Current Employee - Teaching Assistant

    I have been working at University of Washington

    Recommends
    Approves of CEO
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    It is a very fun work environment with plenty of opportunities to meet professionals in the real world and build an extremely strong network. Plus free tuition is nice!

    Cons

    Still need some loans to be able to reasonable live, but what I get paid for my job is very nice.

    Advice to Management

    Management is great and have been more supportive than any other place I have worked before. Hours can be very long as a grad student, but I am glad they understand that.



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