Register: Seattle Workforce Development workshop will focus on apprenticeships, career-connected learning

Washington Governor Jay Inslee will host and speak at the fourth workshop of the Western Governors’ Workforce Development Initiative on Nov. 1-2 in Seattle.

Registration is now open for the workshop, which is part of the Chairman's Initiative of South Dakota Gov. Dennis Daugaard, WGA’s Chair. The initiative seeks to leverage the region’s best thinking to bridge the gap between prospective workers and employers in the West to create enhanced career opportunities for students, graduates and displaced workers.

The Seattle workshop will explore workforce development in the healthcare, advanced manufacturing and IT sectors. There will be a focus on increasing career awareness and opportunity across all populations, including rural and urban communities and secondary students and adults. Panelists will also examine how to establish and scale apprenticeship programs.

WGA is partnering with Washington State Opportunity Scholarship to highlight this public-private partnership.  All workshop participants are invited to attend the OpportunityTalks breakfast on November 2, which will feature a keynote by Derek Thompson, the bestselling author of Hit Makers: The Science of Popularity in the Age of Distraction.

Click here to register

The workshop will be livestreamed and subsequently archived on WGA’s YouTube page. Following is the draft agenda, please check back for updates and livestream information.

November 1

Welcome& Introductory Remarks (12 pm)
Washington Governor Jay Inslee, WGA Executive Director James D. Ogsbury                         

Roundtable I: Career-Connected Learning (12:15 pm)
Career-connected learning opportunities for students -- including job shadowing, internships, and technical training programs -- are critical to increase awareness of available careers and pathways to get there. This roundtable will explore how states are providing those opportunities for more students. Moderator: Bill Symonds, Director, Global Pathways Institute, Arizona State University. Panel: Caroline King, CEO, Washington STEM (tentative).

Roundtable II: Innovation in Apprenticeships (1:45 pm)
The roundtable will highlight developments that expand apprenticeships to new sectors, skills and population segments. This will include a look at Washington programs such as Apprenti and the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee, as well as efforts in other western states. Moderator: John Aultman, Senior Policy Advisor, Workforce Development, Office of Washington Governor Jay Inslee. Panel: Jennifer Carlson, Executive Director, Washington Technology Industry Association Workforce Institute; Lynn Strickland, Executive Director, Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee. 

Panel: Public Policy Supporting Workforce Development (3:15 pm)
Public policy can impact aspects of workforce development beyond training and education. This panel will explore some of those policies and their impacts in the region. Panel: Cami Feek, Paid Family Medical Leave Director, Washington State Employment Security Department.  

Panel: Public-Private Partnership (4:15 pm)
Washington State Opportunity Scholarship is a public-private partnership that gives young people from rural or low-income backgrounds the opportunity to join the high-tech workforce. This panel will take an in-depth look at the genesis of this public-private partnership and how this structure has ensured the longevity of its mission. Moderator: Naria Santa Lucia, Executive Director, WSOS. Panel: Jane Broom, Senior Director, Microsoft Philanthropies; Senator David Frockt, Washington State Senate; Jane Park, WSOS Board Member and Co-Founder & CEO of Julep.  

November 2

OpportunityTalks Breakfast (7:30 am, will not be livestreamed)
Workshop attendees are invited to attend the Washington State Opportunity Scholarship OpportunityTalks Breakfast, an annual event supporting Washington’s next generation of innovators in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and health care. The breakfast will feature remarks from Board Chairman Brad Smith, Microsoft’s President and Chief Legal Officer, inspiring presentations by Opportunity Scholars and keynote speaker Derek Thompson, a senior editor at the Atlantic and bestselling author of Hit Makers: The Science of Popularity in the Age of Distraction.

Roundtable III: Strategies to Tap into Overlooked Talent Pools (9:30 am)
With low unemployment rates in many western states, programs that tap into traditionally overlooked talent pools are critical to meet workforce demand. This roundtable will examine successful strategies for reaching, and then providing education and training, to adult learners, veterans and rural communities. Panel: Rich Cummins, Chancellor, Western Governors University Washington; Juan Garcia, Global Leader for Career Advancement, Amazon (tentative); Meg Ryan, Past Director, Center of Excellence for Global Trade & Supply Chain Management.  

Looking Around the Curve (10:45 am)
A discussion of what challenges the future holds for workforce development in light of major changes such as automation and artificial intelligence and how we can prepare today.

Closing Remarks & Adjourn (11:45 am)

Click here for the full agenda 

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