June 29, 2020
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Final week: Deadline is tomorrow to apply for Don C. Brunell Scholarship for Future Leaders

Future business leaders can get a boost in their higher education or vocational training through the Don C. Brunell Scholarship for Future Leaders.

AWB members created the Don C. Brunell Scholarship in honor of AWB's former president, who retired in 2014.

The award aims to teach the youth of Washington state the role of business in society and to encourage their interests in business as a potential career path.

Don C. Brunell has been a staunch advocate of career and technical education in the state’s K-12, community college and four-year college and university systems. All of these programs have one thing in common: ensuring that the Washington business community has a highly skilled and available pool of business leaders to keep Washington state competitive well into the future.

A student is eligible to apply for the scholarship if they:

  • Are currently enrolled in an undergraduate, graduate, technical or certificate program at any post-secondary institution (public or private) in or outside the state of Washington or who is currently a senior in high school who will be attending a post-secondary institution within the next 12 months in a business field of study or major.
  • Have maintained a minimum 3.00 GPA for the past school year.
  • Are the child or grandchild of an employee of an active member of AWB or the child or grandchild of an employee of AWB and a citizen of the United States or a registered alien.
  •  Submit a signed and completed application that includes:
    • a) A letter why the applicant is pursuing a career in business and applicants educational plans as they relate to career goals.
    • b) A list of all school/community activities or accomplishments indicating positions of leadership.
    • c) A brief description of employment and volunteer experience.
    • d) Two current (less than six months old) letters of recommendation from teachers, clergy, employers or others than family members who are familiar with the applicant’s skills, abilities and character.

Download the application here.

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Fixing child-care shortage and Washington's economic recovery go hand in hand

By The Seattle Times Editorial Board

As Washington gets back to business, many job-seeking parents of young children face a frustrating double bind. Even if they do find employment that will help them provide for their family, the short supply of quality, affordable child care makes it impossible for them to take the job.

Nearly half -- 47% -- of unemployed parents cited lack of child care as a barrier to re-employment in a May survey, according to a state Child Care Collaborative Task Force child-care industry assessment. Since March, more than 1,100 licensed child-care providers have at least temporarily closed, exacerbating a shortage flagged by state lawmakers long before COVID-19...

Even before this spring's upheaval, nearly half of Washington parents reported difficulty finding and keeping affordable child care. Twenty-seven percent reported leaving a job, school or training because of a lack of consistent, affordable care, according to a Department of Commerce report.

This is not just a problem for working families; it is a drain on the state's economy. Commerce estimates that employee turnover and missed work due to child-care issues create an annual $2.08 billion drag on the state economy. That number triples when figuring in opportunity costs.

Addressing Washington's child-care shortage will not be easy, especially during the tough economic times ahead. But quality, affordable child care is a linchpin to the state's economic recovery. More must be done to ensure this essential sector does not fail.

Read the full editorial in The Seattle Times
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The move sparked an avalanche of criticism from technology companies. They said the measures will hurt their ability to recruit talent and have deeper negative ramifications for the economy.

An Amazon.com Inc. spokesperson called the order "shortsighted," adding it prevents "high skilled professionals from entering the country and contributing to America's economic recovery, [putting] American's global competitiveness at risk."

A Facebook Inc. representative said Trump is using the pandemic as justification for "limiting" immigration, which will make "our country's recovery even more difficult."

And Microsoft Corp. President Brad Smith said on social media, "Now is not the time to cut our nation off from the world's talent or create uncertainty and anxiety."

Read the full column in The Seattle Times