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Our Mission: Lead a dynamic, demand-driven workforce system.
March 2014
African businessman mentors his white associate on how to deal with customers effectively

Opportunity Partnership Program Connects Students to Mentors 


In less than three months, 35 students at the Community Colleges of Spokane have been matched with professional mentors in their fields through the Opportunity Partnership Program.


The program funding came to the WDC through the Workforce Training & Education Coordinating Board to help students who qualify for the Opportunity Grant find mentors.  


Mike Helmberger came on board in January as the mentorship specialist. "Our initial approach has been to work closely with college instructors to talk to their entire class about this amazing opportunity to learn from employers, how to successfully transition from being a student to launching a career," said Mike. 


Mentors meet with students typically two to four times a month. All students are in their last quarter of study, and several have started internships at their mentors' companies. One has accepted an offer of employment. 


"Employers really like it. They can have a huge impact and might find their next employee," said Mike. Those interested in learning more should contact Mike at 532-3024 or

KHQ/WorkSource Spokane Job Fair Space Still Available


The WDC has partnered with KHQ and WorkSource Spokane to

host a job fair Wednesday, April 9 at the Lincoln Center. The event is

View the job fair commercial

expected to draw several hundred job seekers and will be occurring at the same time as a similar job fair in Post Falls, also in partnership with KHQ. 


Booth space is free to employers and open to all industries. Those attending must have current openings at the time of the fair. For more information or to reserve your space, contact WDC Workforce Program Manager Kyle West at or 533-8472.


And a special thank you to Altek, Avista and Humanix for allowing KHQ to film a commercial for the fair at their locations.

US Sec. of Labor Thomas Perez Visits Boeing to Talk Workforce


WDC CEO Mark Mattke and Spokane Community College Dean Dave Cox took part in a roundtable with U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez early this month at Boeing in Renton, Wash.


The focus was on Air Washington, a consortium of 11 Washington State community and technical colleges, which have received a $20 million Department of Labor grant to strengthen the state's aerospace industry workforce. The consortium is led by Spokane Community College. The WDC has provided industry navigation services to help guide job seekers into college programs and into careers upon completion.


To date, the consortium has trained more than 2,400 participants, including more than 350 veterans. "Americans are using programs like this one as a springboard to the middle class - a better, more secure living for their families," said Perez. "For those workers, and for their employers, that's what this work is all about - opportunity."

FIRST Robotics Competition Held at EWU


The annual FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) was held March 13-15 at Eastern Washington University. The FRC is for students in grades 9-12 who raise funds, design a team brand and build and program robots to perform specific tasks. WDC CEO Mark Mattke participated as a judge of the competition. 
This year's district FRC brought students from across Washington and Oregon. Locally, 12 teams from Spokane County high schools competed. Qualifying teams will go on to compete at the Pacific Northwest District Championship event in Portland, Ore. April 10-12. 
In This Issue
KHQ/WorkSource Job Fair April 9
US Sec. of Labor Visits Boeing
FIRST Robotics Competition

Upcoming Events 



April 3
3:30 - 5 p.m.
Next Generation Zone
901 E Second Street
Spokane, WA 99202
April 9
7:30 - 9:30 a.m. 
Lincoln Center
1316 N Lincoln
Spokane, WA 99201
April 9
9 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Lincoln Center
1316 N Lincoln
Spokane, WA 99201

Quick Links




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The Spokane Area Workforce Development Council is an equal opportunity employer and provider of employment and training services.  Auxiliary aids are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. Washington Relay Service 711.