About Us

Researching. Understanding. Co-designing. Testing. Improving outcomes.

The Student-Centered Design team at Seattle Jobs Initiative (SJI) partners with colleges and training providers to engage the student voice, tailor systems to student needs and interests, and develop ways to become more student-centered.

Using a collaborative approach, we tap directly into the knowledge and experience of students, staff, and faculty to remove obstacles and identify opportunities to be more responsive to student needs. We then co-design and implement student-centered solutions.

Community or technical college staff and faculty working on a student-centered design project in the library
A student confused by a community and technical colleges system that they don't fully understand

Students and the System

Many of today’s students struggle to access and complete education and training programs, often stymied by a complex system of processes and requirements. The onus is on the students to navigate a system that wasn’t originally designed to meet their needs. In addition, the rising cost of living and the COVID-19 pandemic have made it increasingly difficult for students to afford both the cost of college and basic living expenses.

These are the challenges that we aim to solve through collaborative research and design.

More About SJI and Our Experience

SJI supports people from underinvested communities to build careers. Over the past 25 years, we have acquired deep practical and research-based knowledge and expertise in workforce development, college systems, and creating opportunities for these communities to achieve their education and employment goals.

We provide local employment and training programs; research, policy, and evaluation services; and national technical assistance to government agencies, community-based organizations, and community colleges. In addition, we are the nation’s leading expert in helping state and local governments and provider partners build and grow their SNAP E&T programs.

Community and technical education (CTE) students collaborating together in a college classroom

Learn more about how we work with partners