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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Innovia Foundation awards $125,000 grant to Spokane Workforce Council for scholarships

Shelly O’Quinn, CEO of the Innovia Foundation, and Aaron McMurray, chief strategy officer, welcome attendees at the foundation’s annual reception on May 16.  (Jesse Tinsley/The Spokesman-Review)

The Innovia Foundation has awarded a $125,400 scholarship grant to the Spokane Workforce Council to provide career training and education to youth.

The workforce council will administer the scholarship fund on behalf of Innovia and subcontract with agency partners at the Next Generation Zone – a Spokane-based young adult career center – to subsidize tuition, fees, books and other education-related expenses, according to a news release.

Next Generation Zone staff will also provide access to career guidance with a mentor and build networks with scholarship recipients through monthly cohort meetings and check-ins.

“We are grateful to Innovia for entrusting us with this award that leverages our strong local system and links more young adults with the resources they need to launch their successful career journey,” Mark Mattke, Spokane Workforce Council CEO, said in a statement.

“This award, which will result in numerous scholarships, will make a huge and lasting impact upon the lives of these students and contribute to our region’s long-term economic prosperity.”

The grant is funded through Innovia’s Cultivating Potential Scholarship, which was established in 2021 by an anonymous donor.

The scholarship fund provides tuition assistance, life-skills training and mentorship to youth pursuing post-secondary education.

“The generosity of our donors continues to transform lives by investing in the future of our community,” Shelly O’Quinn, CEO of the Innovia Foundation, said in a statement.

“We are proud to partner with Spokane Workforce Council to make a lasting positive impact in the lives of students and families.”Amy Edelen can be reached at (509) 459-5581 or at