Metropolis of Seattle will make investments as much as $400K for STEM-focused scholarship program

WSOS executive director Kimber Connors. (WSOS Photo)

The city of Seattle will invest up to $400,000 in the Washington Opportunity Scholarship, the public-private partnership that helps to place low-income students and prospective job applicants into STEM-based internships, scholarships and technical training.

Mayor Jenny Durkan announced the partnership in conjunction with the existing Seattle Promise scholarship program. The investment over two years is to help the underserved community gain better access to college and vital job training.

“We’re proud to be the first city in Washington State to partner with WSOS because we are committed to ensuring each and every student in our city, especially our young Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) and lower income students have access to college,” Durkan said in a statement.

“Seattle Promise is building a better future for young people in our city by reducing the cost of college.”

The state will match the city of Seattle’s investment, and up to 60 Seattle Promise scholars will be supported. The funding comes from the Federal Coronavirus Local Recovery Funds.

Kimber Connors, the WSOS executive director, said the partnership with Seattle’s city-funded scholarship program makes both programs better.

“Combining Seattle Promise and WSOS will ensure Seattle students have the support they need to pursue the high-demand jobs in our region,” Connors said. “We know from experience that completing your degree and launching a career takes more than just money.”

WSOS awarded nearly 4,000 scholarships to students last year with half of those scholarships going to minority candidates.

Last week WSOS said it received new funding commitments totaling $30 million from three of its original supporters, Microsoft, Boeing, and Gary and Jennifer Rubens of the Rubens Family Foundation. 

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