Inslee Awards $6.4 Million to Create Apprenticeships, Career Connections for 29,000 Youth

$1.3 million to Career Connect Seattle-King County

Olympia, WA - Job shadowing, internships and apprenticeships are just a few of the career connections that will become available to 29,000 students thanks to $6.4 million in new Career Connect Washington grant funding.

The awardees expect to create 29,000 new career connected learning experiences in 11 communities from now through September 2019. These include STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) learning experiences, job shadows at local employers, career planning, and over 4,800 new internships, pre-apprenticeships, and registered apprenticeships.

“A four-year degree isn’t the only path to a fulfilling career,” Gov. Jay Inslee said. “Business leaders have told us they are looking for talent in everything from information technology to health care. And that’s what this initiative is all about: connecting students to great employers and high-quality job training.”

The initiative expands registered apprenticeship programs and puts a new focus on youth registered apprenticeships. The awardees expect to move over 1,400 young people, plus more than 400 adults, into new apprenticeships and pre-apprenticeships in fields such as advanced manufacturing, health care, agricultural irrigation systems, building trades, IT and maritime manufacturing.

Read the rest of the story, including information about the $1.3 million awarded to Career Connect Seattle-King County, on the governor's Medium page.

Excerpt:

Career Connect Seattle-King County focuses on providing relevant experiences across the continuum of career awareness, exploration, preparation and training for all youth, with an emphasis on underrepresented populations. The proposal partners with Highline and Seattle Public Schools, along with Open Doors sites, while engaging business and expanding apprenticeship pathways for youth and adults across the aerospace, culinary, allied health and construction sectors.

Media Contact
Hannah Mello, Strategic Communications Manager
Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County
hmello@seakingwdc.org | 206.448.0474 x 3014

WDC Announces $700,000 Award for Partnership to Reconnect

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 7, 2015

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (WDC) announces a $700,000 Award for Seattle-King County Partnership to Reconnect– The WDC is pleased to announce a $700,000 award and designation as a Performance Partnership Pilot (P3) from the U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Department of Education. The award will support the WDC’s Seattle-King County Partnership to Reconnect (SKC Partnership), a pilot project that will develop a blueprint for a cohesive youth employment system in Seattle King County. The Pilot includes a partnership with King County Education and Employment Resources (KCEER) and the Community Center for Education Results (CCER). Seattle-King County is one of 10 cities across the country to receive this award.

“This announcement is great news for Washington State’s efforts to support young people in King County by helping put them back on the path to education and employment,” said Senator Patty Murray. “Programs like the Seattle-King County Partnership to Reconnect are an important part of strengthening our middle class, our workforce, and our economy, and I am proud that my bill, the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, could make this investment in the partnership possible.”

“The future of U.S. economic growth depends on the investments we make in a skilled American workforce. I was proud to support this grant to the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County, which will enable youth to access education and workforce development programs vital to gaining living wage employment,” said Senator Cantwell. “We must continue to break down barriers for disadvantaged and at-risk youth to enter the workforce.”

The mission of the WDC is to support a strong economy and the ability of each person to achieve self-sufficiency. Under the direction of the WDC, P3 and the SKC Partnership, offers increased flexibility in using federal funds and strengthens infrastructure that serves disconnected young people ages 16 to 24.

The WDC, KCEER, and CCER share a firm commitment to building a strong system of reengagement pathways that capitalizes on Washington State’s new Open Doors program that offers re-engagement pathway to young people who have dropped out of high school. This project furthers the recent authorization of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) that calls for targeted employment and education services to disconnected youth in the public workforce system.

“This innovative program will help reduce inequities in our county, and open new opportunities to succeed – in particular for those who have dropped out of school or had a brush with the law,” said King County Executive Dow Constantine.

“In King County alone, there are nearly 25,000 young people who are not in school and not working,” Marléna Sessions, CEO of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County. “The Seattle-King County Partnership to Reconnect project is a tremendous opportunity to invest in our future workforce through reengagement and employment. It’s our greatest hope that this project will set young people on a path to careers that lead to self-sufficiency and a stronger regional economy.”

Using three primary strategies, the SKC Partnership will align pathways, improve eligibility requirements for young people, and build shared functions across employment and education programs. The project, funded through December 2017, will specifically:

·         Facilitate the strategic coordination of workforce development services with the State’s Open Doors dropout reengagement program and increase access to Reintegration of Ex-Offenders services for some of our hardest-to-serve opportunity youth;

·         Leverage the work of AmeriCorps members to implement a regional outreach strategy aimed at connecting youth with programs that best reflect their needs and to enhance existing employer engagement efforts; and

·         Advance coordination efforts through the development of a common intake process and aligned data systems.

WDC Announces $90,000 Award from Bank of America

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 4, 2015 

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (WDC) announces a $90,000 Award from Bank of America – The WDC is pleased to announce a $90,000 grant from Bank of America to support the WDC’s Youth at Work Summer Employment Program.

The mission of the WDC is to support a strong economy and the ability of each person to achieve self-sufficiency. Under the direction of the WDC, Youth at Work sponsors summer job opportunities for youth ages 14 to 24, and supports the development of their workplace skills, and assists employers in evolving a future workforce.

Bank of America and the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County share a commitment to connect low-income youth to meaningful employment opportunities. Funding will expand participation in the WDC's Youth at Work Summer Employment Program, through paid internships for 45 economically disadvantaged youth at a variety of worksites, with an emphasis on high-growth industry sectors. The award will also support youth employment efforts through King County Employment and Education Resources and the City of Seattle’s Mayor’s Youth Employment Initiative. Youth interns will also have access to other resources provided by the Youth at Work Program, including mentorship, career fairs, networking opportunities, exposure to post-secondary options, ongoing case management, work readiness skills, and ultimately make progress towards self-sufficiency.

“It’s undeniable that young people have exponentially brighter financial futures when they stay in school and gain valuable life experience through summer employment and internships,” said Anthony DiBlasi, Seattle and Washington state president for Bank of America.  “We’ve long partnered with WDC because of their expertise in proving youth with access to the support, encouragement and resources that put them on the path out of poverty and are contributors to creating a stronger economy across the Puget Sound.”

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly 16.5 percent of our state's young adults were unemployed in 2014, more than double the rate of those ages 25-64. The Opportunity Index highlights the fact that nearly 25,000 young people, age 16-24, are not in school and are not working in King County.

Research shows that youth employment improves long-term financial well-being, while increasing cognitive and non-cognitive skills, such as grit, responsibility, determination, and self-confidence. When young people are employed, they are less likely to be involved in criminal activity and are better able to attain self-sufficiency in the future.

Marléna Sessions, CEO of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County, stated, “As we look back on the lasting effects of the Great Recession, the invisible legacy is that young people in particular have been left behind. Supporting young people through employment can set them on a path to find careers that lead to self-sufficiency so they can contribute to our community and local economy.”

About the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (www.seakingwdc.org, @SeattleKingWDC) is a nonprofit workforce think-tank and grant-making organization that oversees employment-related programs for youth, the adult workforce, and employers in King County, with the goal of a strong economy and self-sufficiency for every resident.

About Bank of America

To learn more about Bank of America’s corporate social responsibility efforts, visit about.bankofamerica.com/about and follow @BofA_Community.

 

The WDC Joins Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action and Teams with Cengage Learning’s ed2go and Smart Horizons Career Online Education.

The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (WDC) Joins Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action and Teams with Cengage Learning’s ed2go and Smart Horizons Career Online Education- Nearly 10% of King County residents lack a high school diploma, however a new program being made available by the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County (WDC), offers residents the opportunity to earned accredited diplomas and credentialed career certificates. Career Online High School (COHS), part of the world’s first accredited, private online school district, is specifically designed to reengage young people back into the educational system and prepare them for entry into the workforce.

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