AAPA Seaports Advisory

Community Outreach: Oakland, Prince Rupert

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Port of Oakland Scholarship Awards Exceed $1 Million

Two Port of Oakland employee scholarship organizations reached a milestone this month by surpassing the $1 million mark in scholarships for students. During the past 20 years, port employees have given 600 Oakland high school students $1.1 million in scholarship funds.

The port Asian Employees Association Scholarship and Employees’ Scholarship Program were created in 1993 and 1994, respectively, to raise money for Oakland students. These organizations are all volunteer and employee run.

Each year, high school seniors apply for port employee scholarship awards that average $1,600 per student. The goal is to encourage students to pursue post-secondary education, vocational school, or apprenticeship training.
This month, the scholarship associations together raised $76,500 for 31 high school students.

"For over 23 years, Port of Oakland employees have raised money so that Oakland high school students can achieve their college dreams," said Port of Oakland Director of Social Responsibility Amy Tharpe. "Our greatest investment is in the future success of Oakland students."

Prince Rupert: Port Authority Community Investment to Enhance Digital Connectivity and Youth Recreation in Indigenous Coastal Village

The Port of Prince Rupert last week announced its largest Community Investment Fund contribution to-date in the community of Lax Kw’alaams (BC).

A total of $539,400 was invested in two projects that are enhancing the digital connectivity of the coastal village as well as providing new recreation opportunities for local youth. The Smart Community infrastructure project will modernize Lax Kw’alaams’ information technology systems, enabling the effective and efficient management the community’s computerized systems. The Outdoor Leadership Adventure Program provides the equipment and programming for the Coast Tsimshian Academy and recreation center to offer activities like kayaking, biking and camping to families interested in organized or independent exploration of the surrounding region.

The lack of modern information technology has proven a barrier to accessing essential government, industry and private sector initiatives for Lax Kw’alaams leadership in recent years. The extensive system upgrade will also benefit residents with greater access to online education and programs, bringing a wealth of opportunities to community members. The Smart Community project will see core networks established, with server and computer systems equipped with software and security that meets global standards for municipal administration and business communication. New phone, surveillance and alarm systems will improve digital and physical security of the IT network.

"These projects are so much more than just wiring, hardware and equipment," said Don Krusel, the port authority’s president and CEO. "The communications infrastructure we’re investing in will improve the quality of life by creating new jobs in the community and allowing Lax Kw’alaams to share its unique cultural heritage in new ways. And we’re thrilled to hear stories about the outdoor adventures their children are embarking on with the new recreation programs and equipment available in the community."

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