The Seattle Times

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Photos by Ken Lambert / The Seattle Times
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Saturday, February 23, 2013

College on the cheap

Heather Shute, 32, is pursuing her license in aircraft maintenance at South Seattle Community College. Although she already has a bachelor’s degree from Pacific Lutheran University and seven years of experience in broadcast journalism, Shute figures she’ll earn more in the aircraft industry. The two-year program at South Seattle costs about $15,000, which she’s paying with scholarships and money saved. She says she’ll emerge debt-free and expects to earn between $45,000 and $80,000 a year as an aircraft mechanic.