2016 OpportunityTalks Breakfast Highlights

The Washington State Opportunity Scholarship’s second annual OpportunityTalks fundraising breakfast comes to another successful close! The event brought together 800 leaders from the business, government and education communities across the state in attendance to discuss the importance of promoting STEM and health care education, learn the importance of grit in achieving goals, and support our high-demand, homegrown workforce of WSOS Scholars.

Taking place on October 25 at the Sheraton Seattle Hotel, the breakfast kicked off with co-hosts David Rose from Q13 FOX News and WSOS Executive Director Naria K. Santa Lucia. They introduced Governor Jay Inslee who spoke highly of the scholarship's impact on students’ and our State’s focus on workforce development, industry engagement and economic vitality. 

Keynote speaker and New York Times bestselling author Angela Duckworth delivered the theme of the morning of unlocking passion and success through grit. She stressed the importance of combining talent and effort in order to achieve goals and not letting frustration get in the way of the bigger picture.

Next, WSOS Scholar Mark Bennett delivered his own personal story of grit. Having previously suffered from homelessness and addiction while being a father to a small child, Mark was able to overcome his troubles in order to pursue mathematics at the University of Washington. With the scholarship support and resources, Mark was able to focus his efforts to succeed in his field and focus on his family. He is now pursuing a master's degree at the University of Washington and credits the program for helping him on the right track.

“The scholarship validated me at a time when I really needed that,” he said.

Mark received a standing ovation from an inspired crowd. OpportunityTalks raised $1.25 million including the State match, which more than doubled the total raised last year. We want to thank all attendees and partners for helping open the doors of opportunity for students and building a brighter future in Washington!


Table sets for OpportunityTalks, with New York Times Bestseller Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance as the centerpiece.

WSOS Executive Director Naria Santa Lucia and Q13's David Rose co-host the event
 
Washington State Governor Jay Inslee addresses the crowd.
 
Angela Duckworth delivers the keynote and emphasizes the importance of applying passion and grit.
 
WSOS Scholar Mark Bennett provides his own personal tale of grit and the impact the scholarship has made on his life.
 
Scholars came from across the state to attend OpportunityTalks.

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