This has been the kind of week I long for. Every day on campus (i.e., no Olympia or other travel) and progress on a lot of projects.
One of the projects I am coordinating for the region is to bring together about a dozen biotech companies and seven institutions of higher education to conduct a gap analysis on workforce needs. We then hope to develop educational pathways to meet those needs. It’s the first time we have worked regionally to perform this kind of work. Our partners include the 5-Star Consortium (Cascadia, Shoreline, Edmonds, Everett, LWIT), Bellevue College, and UW Bothell. This got kick-started by a local company (Juno) who is expecting to expand their workforce by 900 employees over the next two years. We’ve had our first meeting. There is another in March and then in April. We hope to have academic pathways in the works by the time we are finished.
The second project, which I’ve reported on previously, is my 8-month long research project around new revenue sources. I have completed interviews with all 6 city managers in our district and am now moving on to develop our summit of industry leaders. They will help brainstorm our commodities and suggest possibilities for us. I hope to have that summit in April. I plan to conduct campus forums in May soliciting ideas from those of us on campus.
While I may not have been in Olympia, I continue to work on behalf of the State Board to communicate with legislators as the session progresses. The legislative session ends on March 8, or so they say. I plan to include in that week’s Friday Letter a list of bills important to us and the disposition of those bills. There have been issues around capital dollars, running start, and bargaining, among others.
On a side note,we were also reminded by the State Board this week that Governor Inslee’s executive order directs state agencies to refrain from inquiring about a person’s immigration status in order to determine whether that person has complied with immigration laws. This means that all of us, as employees, must not inquire about this status. It will help us continue to build a safe community.
Upcoming events, I hope to see you at these:
Legislative Town Halls. The 1st District (Palumbo, Stanford, and Kloba) will hold a town hall here at Cascadia in Mobius from 3:30-5:00 on February 17. They will report on their activities and take questions. Similarly, the 45th (Dhingra, Springer, Goodman) will host their town hall on the same day but at Lake Washington Tech, 11:30-1:00. I will be at both.
President’s Pub (brought to you by the Cascadia College Foundation), for employees only. Join your colleagues for a Foundation-sponsored social event. It’s the return of a legend. February 26, 4:00-6:00pm, CC2-261.
Join Huda Sarhan and Becky Riopel in a group conversation about the Women’s March movement and the controversy/divisiveness it creates among sub-groups of women. They will share a brief history of the march and give folks a chance to talk about their personal experience in the march, the perception of the march through the lens of media and the perception from those who heard about the march from participants. The hope is to have a mutual dialogue in a confidential and respectful space. March 7, 12:00-1:00pm, CC2-261.
Next week, I am back to the travel routine. I will be in Olympia Wednesday through Friday. Wednesday is another lobbying day and the other two days are for the Presidents’ monthly meeting.
Have a great weekend.