Helping Students Reach New Heights With Alaska Airlines!

By United Way of King County, on June 7, 2023 | In Breaking the Cycle of Poverty, Eat, Drink & Be Generous, Events, Fighting Homelessness, Helping Students Graduate

This blog post was written by Taylor Roberson, United Way of King County marketing program manager.

The latest iteration of United Way of King County’s Happy Hour & Hellos was held at the new Alaska Airlines headquarters in SeaTac. The May 23 event marked the first time Alaska Airlines hosted an external group at its new space, and United Way’s giving communities were elated to be there.

Emerging Leaders 365, our young professionals’ group, regularly hosts networking opportunities that give folks space to connect in person while learning about local issues and finding meaningful ways to get involved. The evening focused on helping students reach new heights through United Way’s college completion program, Bridge to Finish, which has provided over 27,000 resources to students. This is a cause Alaska Airlines regularly supports through United Way, community partners, and its own youth aviation program.

There was a lot of energy in the room, led by a strong showing of the Emerging Leaders 365 committee members and a wonderful host in Alaska Airlines. Event attendees were engaged from the start when they were handed a passport that asked questions which encouraged them to get to know other event attendees. There was a silent auction with prizes that included seven-night getaways to two different Caribbean locations and airport lounge passes.

The event featured Alaska Airlines senior VP people Andy Schneider (a United Way board member), who said some kind words about Alaska Airlines and United Way and was a very gracious host. Our colleague Riham Hashi spoke passionately about the Bridge to Finish program, moving guests to help students reach new heights.  

Collin Noble, an Emerging Leaders 365 committee member, emceed the event and encouraged guests to get involved in “what felt right for them.” For many that meant making donations during the event or  bringing educational items for the Summer Book Drive with International Rescue.

Others chose to try their hand in the silent auction. Guests who became donors at the Emerging Leaders 365 level by pledging $1/day or $30 a month at the event were entered to win two round-trip tickets on Alaska Airlines. Carolyn D. Dunne won the round-trip tickets and is planning is on brushing up on her Spanish to travel to Belize.  

With no shortage of in-person volunteer activities just around the corner, guests could sign up to act directly in the community.

Roughly 120 people showed up looking to make a difference in their communities. Together, more than 150 pounds of summer book drive supplies were donated to enrich children while school is out and nearly $10,000 raised to help students reach new heights through United Way’s college completion programs.

Thank you to everyone who attended Happy Hour & Hellos: Alaska Airlines and check out what’s next on the calendar!


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