Mayor Strickland receives 2017 WASA Community Leadership Award

5/2/2017 | TACOMA, Washington

Beginning in 2013, the City of Tacoma partnered with Tacoma Public Schools to reduce teenage violence, improve graduation rates, and increase youth employment based on a concept developed by Mayor Marilyn Strickland.

This youth employment program—Summer Jobs 253—began with 50 paid student placements in local businesses and has successfully grown by 50 placements each year, achieving 253 placements for the summer of 2017.

For her contributions to the success of Tacoma students, Mayor Strickland this week received the 2017 Tacoma region Community Leadership Award presented by the Washington Association of School Administrators.

WASA presents this award annually to a community member or group in recognition of their outstanding contributions toward education. Specific criteria includes: benefit to students, leadership, motivation, success, cooperation/coordination with local district, recognition by others, and history of service.

The success of the Summer Jobs 253 partnership spawned scalable procedures for partnering that led to the launch of the Tacoma Tideflats Certification Program, which initiated the development of a pipeline for Tacoma students to fill entry-level positions with employers associated with commerce generated through the Port of Tacoma.

Mayor Strickland and the City of Tacoma team continue to leverage these partnerships, which recently resulted in the Tacoma Works Summit. The summit brought contractors, education providers, job trainers, and workforce development agencies together to strengthen pathways for the residents of Tacoma and Pierce County to fill in-demand, family-wage job opportunities in construction trades.

“When it comes to student success, schools can’t do it alone,” said Superintendent Carla Santorno. “We deeply appreciate Mayor Strickland’s dedication to education and the children of Tacoma. Because of her passion for Summer Jobs 253, hundreds of students have greater opportunities for college and careers.”