Seattle Public Schools

Seahawks help WHOLE Mentees Envision Careers Beyond the Field

Summary: During a recent WHOLE Mentoring event, students were able to envision a future as a professional within the Seahawks organization.

The WHOLE Story 

Seattle Public Schools (SPS) is committed to ensuring every student graduates prepared for college, a career, and community participation. The district is laser focused on supporting students of color who are furthest from educational justice, beginning with Black boys and teens.  

One way SPS is building a connection with these students is through a new mentoring program offered by The Office of African American Male Achievement (AAMA). With Hope Our Lives Excel (WHOLE) Mentoring provides ninth and tenth grade Black teens mentorship that centers on the social, emotional, and educational needs of students.  

“WHOLE’s purpose is to be hope affirming and foster a joy for learning,” said Will King, WHOLE Mentoring program coordinator. “Seeing the joy on students’ faces when learning new information and the hope in their eyes that aspirations are achievable is what we live for. This lays a strong foundation for success in education, career, and life.” 

During a recent WHOLE Mentoring event, students were able to envision a future as a professional within the Seahawks organization. Students spent an evening at Lumen Field learning from Seahawks professionals about their career journeys.  

Students listen to a tour guide at Lumen Field

In a panel discussion, current and former Black male Seahawks staff members—including two past players—spoke with students about their experiences with the NFL organization. Their conversation exposed the students to multiple career opportunities that contribute to the success of the Seahawks organization. 

“AAMA looks to rewrite the narrative of young Kings,” said Kelvin Dankwa, WHOLE Mentoring program coordinator. “Events like this help us make steps in the right direction.” 

Students were eager to hear from the Seahawks staff to gain insight into what obstacles they might encounter when discovering a career path.  

“I want to know how much hard work [the professionals] had to put in to get to where they are now,” SPS rising freshman Josiah Echols said.  

Students in the Lumen press box

They also were excited to build connections with their peers at SPS.  

“This is a great opportunity to connect with people and meet with kids who are younger than me so I can be a future mentor,” said SPS rising senior Trevon Mitchell.  

After the panel discussion, students were treated to a private tour of Lumen Field where they visited the press box, press briefing room, the field, and many other fun stops.  

AAMA and the Seahawks look to continue a partnership to provide exciting opportunities to help further students’ educational and career goals.  

A group of students and mentors hold a Seahawks 12 flag on Lumen Field

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