At their August 18 meeting, Port of Tacoma commissioners approved a new Workforce Development Strategic Plan that will significantly increase the Port’s workforce development investments within Pierce County starting in 2023, focusing on well-paying jobs in maritime and trades that do not require a four-year college degree.

The Port’s overarching goal is to assist those interested in maritime industry careers to receive the necessary training and encourage youth/young adults, who may be unaware of the job opportunities available, to consider the possibilities.

Major initiatives outlined in the Port’s plan include support for the Youth Marine Foundation, contracting with local organizations to provide internships and paid work experiences for youth/young adults with trades employers, a Port summer internship program, support for Tacoma Public Schools Tideflats Certification Programs, an apprentice utilization requirement for public works projects, and more.

“The Port’s workforce development strategies were developed to create more pathways for local youth and young adults to get hands-on experience and build bridges to opportunities for meaningful, well-paying jobs in maritime and skilled trades,” said Don Meyer, Port of Tacoma commission president. “Preparing future generations with the skills and training needed to fill the numerous and diverse jobs that exist within the port industry is a key priority in the Port’s Strategic Plan and furthers our mission to promote prosperity and support family-wage job creation in Pierce County.”