Around the Table: Avista, Fred Hutch, Comcast, Seattle Storm, Nordstrom, U.S. Bank

Education-to-Career Pathway Spotlight: Students from underrepresented communities are gaining improved access to career pathways through hands-on learning opportunities at Washington Roundtable member companies like Avista Utilities and Fred Hutch. Internships and research programs in energy and biomedical sciences provide the chance to work with professionals, learn by doing, receive mentorship, build their networks, and more. In Partnership for Learning’s latest blog and video series about Avista’s Energy Pathways program, learn how students are working toward credentials and cultivating promising careers.

Supporting Communities: Comcast announced a new round of cities – including Seattle – will receive grants from the Comcast RISE Investment Fund, providing an additional $5 million to hundreds of small businesses owned by people of color, including Black, Indigenous, Hispanic, and Asian American owners, and women. Seattle Storm and Nordstrom are working with Shoes That Fit on their 12th annual back-to school- campaign to provide sneakers to youth in need.

Changing the Quality of Work: U.S. Bank is working to improve job quality for lower-wage workers by providing community development financial institutions (CDFIs) access to capital investments. This initiative will help small businesses meet their financial goals, build racial equity, and enable more small businesses to prosper.

Around the Table: Pacific NW Nat’l Laboratory, Microsoft, Alaska Air, Bristol Myers Squibb, Mariners

Check out a snippet of recent news from Roundtable members:
  • Commitment to Sustainability & Climate: In its 2022 Sustainability Report, Boeing provides a comprehensive view of achievements and progress toward the industry’s net-zero ambitions and goals. Pacific Northwest Laboratory shares in the Tri-City Herald how its scientists are studying materials to enable safe, cost-effective hydrogen storage, which can play an important role in achieving the nation’s net-zero carbon emissions goals. Microsoft, Alaska Air, and carbon transformation company Twelve announced that they are collaborating to advance sustainable aviation fuel derived from recaptured CO2 and renewable energy.
  • Advancing Equity & Inclusion: Bristol Myers Squibb recently announced a partnership with Jack and Jill of America Inc to support BMS’ Tomorrow’s Innovators HBCU Initiative to increase workforce representation by creating and sustaining a pipeline of diverse talent.
  • Supporting Communities: Applications are now open for the Seattle Mariners’ Community Impact Grants, which seek to increase positive health outcomes and accelerate equitable outcomes for BIPOC communities.

CASE STUDIES: Programs and practices to increase credential attainment

In a series of recent case studies, our education foundation, Partnership for Learning, profiles a range of opportunities that stakeholders across Washington – educators, institutions, policymakers, employers, and families alike – should consider as they work together to remove barriers and encourage students on their best-fit pathways to earning post-high school credentials. Areas of focus:

Employers are expected to create 373,000 net new jobs in Washington state by 2026. Most will require or be filled by workers who have completed a post-high school credential such as an apprenticeship, certificate, or degree. Yet our state is facing a crisis in credential attainment, with the pandemic further driving declines in postsecondary enrollment. Our goal: 70% of Washington students – overall and within each racial and ethnic group – will earn a post-high school credential by age 26. Strategies already underway can make up half the distance in enrollment gains needed to hit that goal by the high school class of 2030. Getting the rest of the way will require new thinking, transformed systems, and an unrelenting effort to meet the needs and aspirations of Washington students, particularly Black, Hispanic, Latino/a, Native American, and Indigenous students and students from low-income backgrounds.  These case studies start to look at some of those options and efforts to remove barriers so more students earn the credentials that will power their futures and help them reach their dreams.

Find more of our research and resources here.

Around the Table: Seattle Mariners, Seattle Kraken, Microsoft

Creating Pathways to Opportunity: In their 2020-2021 Community Impact Report, the Seattle Mariners detail recent investments and participation in a wide range of activities, including a partnership with the Seattle Kraken and Seattle University to improve diversity in sports and entertainment. This year, the Mariners will host their first class of MBA fellows, offering several fellowships for candidates enrolled in SU’s new MBA in Sport and Entertainment Management program.

Advancing Racial Equity: As Microsoft enters the third year of its commitment to its Racial Equity Initiative, the company is celebrating Black entrepreneurs who are helping to make sure each industry looks like America. Read more.

Nominate a Northwest Hero: The Seattle Kraken, One Roof Foundation, and Starbucks have teamed up to create the Kraken Unity Fund, which will honor inspiring individuals doing outstanding work across the Pacific Northwest. A Kraken Unity Fund Honoree will be recognized at each Seattle Kraken regular-season home game during the 2022/23 season. The honoree will select a nonprofit to receive a donation of $32,000. Nominations must be received by August 1 to be considered for the first round of selection. Learn more.