From a May 29, 2019, Everett Public Schools News Release.
District staff match students with employers as Everett Career Link program begins
A map of the Everett School District hangs in Dr. Dana Riley Black’s office – filled with color-coded dots, post-its and other notes. It is one of many planning tools she and her Everett Public Schools team are using to track where high school students will be interning this summer.
“We are encouraged by the significant interest in supporting local students exploring local careers,” shared Black, the district’s executive director of STEM, strategic partnership and legislation.
Twenty-three employers were able to commit to 106 summer internship placement opportunities through the newly formed Everett Career Link partnership between Everett Public Schools and the city of Everett, announced in January 2019.
About 90 students put their hat in the ring for a summer internship, and approximately 70 students were able to commit to the summer schedule and were paired with employers. District staff are working with both students and employers to prepare for the summer and will continue the wrap-around support through the summer.
Students at each high school recently celebrated their internship announcements along with city of Everett officials.
Cascade High School senior Devan Austin will intern with the city of Everett’s Information Technology Department this summer.
Austin commented, “I am really looking forward to a supported introduction into the workplace, and the opportunity to explore a field that I would not be able to without this program.”
The kinds of internships range from technology to medical, education to business careers. Students included their interests and skills on their applications, but the matchmaking happened last month with the help of district staff, including the school worksite learning coordinators who will be the liaisons between the student interns and the employers from now through the end of the summer.
They will ensure students are progressing on their worksite learning plans to support their learning and accountability. They will also help students with other things they may need to enter the workplace, including transportation, clothing and lunches.
Everett Career Link is aligned to larger efforts in Washington state. Governor Jay Inslee introduced Career Connect Washington in 2017 and called for a statewide effort to offer more career exploration and training opportunities for students.
The governor’s plan included hosting a “regional intermediary” to help oversee each local program. That is precisely what the school district and city of Everett are piloting in Everett Career Link.
Mr. Shannon Affholter is consulting with the district to pilot best practices for recruitment, preparation and support of employer hosts.
Affholter’s work will help the district and city figure out what works, preparing the program to receive future grants and other funding.
While Everett Career Link is starting local, it has plans to grow in number of students and across the region.
The district, city of Everett and Economic Alliance Snohomish County are co-sponsoring an Everett Career Link reception on Wednesday, June 5th, from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm at the Arena Grill inside Angel of the Winds Arena (entrance on Wall and Oakes avenues) in conjunction with the district’s Innovation Expo.
The reception is open to the public and attendees are encouraged to register online for the event.