Spokane Journal of Business

Greater Spokane Incorporated debuts internship portal project

Spokane first to test out AWB employment tool

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Greater Spokane Incorporated is working with the Association of Washington Business to pilot an online internship portal website in the Spokane area.

Cassidy Peterson, director of education and talent at GSI, says AWB conceived the Washington State Workforce Portal last year and asked GSI to be its partner in a pilot of the tool, which launched here in early August. Peterson says GSI and AWB have a long-standing relationship.

“AWB figured that they needed to pilot the project and the portal in at least one (city), if not two cities, for the first year to garner some success stories and local support before expanding it across the entire state all at once,” Peterson says.

The portal ultimately will connect employers and prospective interns at both the local and state levels. 

Through the free portal, students and universities and colleges can create profiles and search for internship opportunities. Employers can create a free profile to post internship opportunities and to search through student candidates.

Peterson says the pilot of the portal is focused exclusively on college internships.

“However, there is a desire to expand that as the tool itself grows to include high school-level opportunities, so potentially job shadows or even high school-level internships, and potentially teacher opportunities,” Peterson says.

AWB is also conducting a pilot of the portal in the Tri-Cities area, though Peterson says that pilot isn’t as far along as its Spokane counterpart. 

The pilot will be wrapped up in June 2021.

There are currently only two internships posted for the Spokane area on the portal. One is for a brand marketing internship with Spokane Teachers Credit Union, while the other is for an internship with Ignite Northwest.

“There’s been a whole slew of employers who have created profiles so far,” Peterson says, naming Spokane companies Wagstaff Inc., Numerica Credit Union, and DH among them.

AWB’s higher education leadership and the Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges funded the portal and pilots. 

The new portal can be accessed at washingtonworkforceportal.org.

Virginia Thomas
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Reporter Virginia Thomas has worked at the Journal since 2017 and covers the banking and finance industries. As a reporter, she loves learning about Spokane's many growing industries. She enjoys travelling with her husband, snuggling with her cats, and cross stitching.

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