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Highline Community College supports local economic development
Highline Community College President Dr. Jack Bermingham hosted on April 28 the Southwest King County Economic Development Roundtable Breakfast that explored ways for expanding collaborative efforts to improve economic development in the region.
“The college’s support for economic development remains a critical priority in serving the region,” said Dr. Bermingham. “We want to be both a partner and a resource in addressing the development challenges faced by our communities.”
King County Council Member Julia Patterson and Pete von Reichbauer co-sponsored the event and were joined by local mayors, city managers and economic development directors.
“I found the event useful in addressing economic development issues on a regional level,” said Federal Way City Manager Brian Wilson. “I look forward to future meetings where we can openly discuss issues of mutual concern and seek opportunities to collaborate and coordinate.”
One of the college’s top initiatives includes the Southwest King County Economic Development Initiative (SKCEDI), a collaboration between Burien, Des Moines, Normandy Park, SeaTac and Tukwila, the Port of Seattle, King County and the college. The partners work together to build programs focused on increasing jobs and business opportunities in Southwest King County.
In addition, Highline has been a local leader in expanding economic development and supporting workforce development programs, including:
• Small Business Development Center – The center provides counseling, resources and technical assistance for small and medium-size business owners, managers and entrepreneurs in Southwest King County.
• StartZone – The program offers free services to help women, people of color, immigrants and people with disabilities start or expand small businesses in Southwest King County.
• Procurement Technical Assistance Center – The center provides no-fee assistance to businesses wanting to market and sell their products and services to federal, state and local government agencies.
• Business Attraction Program – The program markets the assets and opportunities in Southwest King County to outside businesses, commercial real estate investors and developers, and companies in the trade and logistics sector.
• Puget Sound Welcome Back Center – The center helps internationally trained medical professionals work in the health care field in the U.S.
• Center of Excellence for International Trade, Transportation, and Logistics (ITTL) – The center promotes efforts to expand the local ITTL work sector through education and training and works with local industry leaders, associations, colleges and universities.