An innovative initiative from the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle provides African Americans and other minorities across Seattle’s urban community access to technology, training and STEM-related educational opportunities.
Announced at their 2018 Facing the Future Breakfast, the new 2020 Vision Campaign will improve education and, ultimately, careers in the technology field.
The program will give 2,020 new individuals, who have never had it before, access to technology and training by the end of 2020. The 2020 Vision Campaign received $30,000 in seed funding from Comcast Washington to help launch the initiative. At the event, Comcast Washington Director of Talent Acquisition and Talent Management, Mark Brown, announced the contribution.
The 2020 Vision Program, with Comcast’s support, will better prepare African Americans and other under-served populations in the region for careers and education in today’s digital revolution. Programming elements include:
- Urban Tech Job Hiring: Through partnerships with Comcast, Seattle Central Community College and others, the Urban League will use data and innovative hiring practices to expand openness to non-traditional hiring. With this data, the community can understand what digital skills are needed, and increase hiring of graduates from both nontraditional and traditional training programs.
- The Urban League’s Seattle Summer University: This new six-week program provides academic enrichment and skill-building through a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) curriculum on the campus of Seattle Central. Students will be engaged in hands-on activities that help develop their understanding and thinking about the world of STEAM, and include field experience and guest speakers.
- Project Ready STEM: This program operates with the goals of ensuring that urban students have the necessary supports and opportunities available to them to succeed in STEM-related class work, and exposing students to STEM-related careers. Project Ready Students participate in various projects in a stimulating environment to increase their comfort level with and spark a greater affinity for STEM subjects.
“The 2020 Campaign is a critical program that Seattle needs to help bridge the Digital Divide for some of the most underrepresented people across our community. Today, technology and STEM-related fields offer life-changing career opportunities, and everyone deserves an opportunity to have access to them,” said Michelle Merriweather, Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle President & CEO.
“We are happy to have Comcast lead as a technology partner and a financial supporter of our new 2020 Vision Program, as we strive to close the digital divide for the communities across urban Seattle.”
Comcast has supported the Urban League of Seattle for nearly a decade, through technology grants and the technology company’s Digital Literacy Training Program. With the new 2020 Campaign and the continued support of the Comcast Digital Literacy Program, the Urban League of Metropolitan Seattle is poised to connect, train, and place hundreds of young people, people of color, and/or under-represented individuals. Through it, Seattle’s minority communities will have a new opportunity to seek education and careers in STEM-related fields – helping the city to get one step closer to closing the digital divide.