University - Community Partnerships for Workforce Development
Snyder Kelly, Anna
Kim, Anna Joo
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Visitors to Georgia Tech need only to walk a few minutes’ distance from campus to find the Westside community, but they will feel like they’re in a different world. Though the area has made a significant cultural contribution to Atlanta, in recent years severe disinvestment has led to high unemployment, high crime rates, low educational attainment, and other problems in the community. While its neighbor to the east, Georgia Tech, has grown and thrived, the Westside has been left behind. Many residents lack even basic computer access, for example, making it even more difficult to find work. This is the situation at the doorstep of an internationally recognized research university; but we don’t have to accept it. This report proposes two areas of focus for Georgia Tech to take action for the Westside: 1. A community RFP program to leverage academic resources for neighboring community projects. 2. Westside-supportive policies in institutional procurement, hiring, and diversity. These recommendations are preliminary, but have been designed with simple and quick implementation in mind.