STEM grant supports valuable lessons
Edmonds-Woodway High School (EWHS)
Robotics Team 4077 M*A*S*H extends their
sincere thanks for providing a STEM grant
to support the activities of the EWHS FIRST
Robotics Team during the 2014-2015 season.
Your generous donation was applied toward
parts to build our robot. We competed at two
district events – Glacier Peak High School and Shorewood High School. We won the team spirit
award at Glacier Peak.
Among the team’s many accomplishments were the lessons learned about teamwork, project
management, CAD, engineering, programming, 3D printing, outreach, and mentoring.
The competition was exciting, but the lasting benefit of this program is the hands-on engineering skills that the students gain in designing and building the robot; the business skills that result
from managing the schedule, costs, and quality of the product; the marketing skills used to promote the team and the FIRST ideals; and the value of teamwork within the team and with other
teams. These skills are preparing the next generation of SPEEA-represented Boeing engineers and
other STEM professionals for the future.
Thank you again for your support and the impact that you have had on the lives of the students.
Robotics mentor and SPEEA member
EWHS Robotics Team 4077 M*A*S*H
Apply for grant
The deadline to apply for a Northwest
Council grant related to Science, Technology,
Engineering and Math (STEM) is Aug. 15.
See details at www.speea.org.
Contract rights at risk at TV stations
By Joel Funfar, SPEEA NW VP and SPEEA-Area
IFPTE VP and Dave Twedell, IATSE Local 600
Late in 2013, the company then known as Gannett (now Tegna) bought Belo Broadcasting, and thereby acquired 23
TV stations, more than doubling its roster.
As a result, union workers at two of those stations
(KING 5 in Seattle and KGW-TV in Portland)
are facing tough negotiations and takeaways in
pay and benefits – that could add up to more
than a $5,900 pay cut per year.
The Northwest SPEEA Council passed a motion
to support these unions and their members by
raising awareness and pledging strike support if
needed. These stations supported SPEEA in the
past by covering many of the events in SPEEA’s
The union-represented professional journalists,
photographers and technicians working at those
stations have formed a coalition to respond to the
changes that the new owner has brought under
the guise of a new “Business Model.”
The company is pushing steep health care ben-
efit cuts, raising the premiums and raising the
deductible for coverage to $5,000. In effect,
employees with full family coverage will now
have to pay out in excess of $5,000 before getting
back one penny in benefits. This is leading many
of their members to look for work elsewhere.
Most ominous is a proposed contract change
over who can do the work. Gannett/Tegna is
proposing what it calls non-exclusive jurisdictional contract language to all three unions –
SAG-AFTRA for the on-air personnel, IATSE
for the photographers and editors and IBEW
for the engineers and technicians. This idea is
essentially outsourcing. The company wants to
hire anyone regardless of credentials to do the
work previously done by professionals represented by unions.
With the cancellation of its contract with CNN,
to save money, the ulterior motive is apparent –
the company puts costs over quality. Meanwhile
the other TV stations with CNN contracts
are providing world news hours ahead of the
The coalition of labor unions at the stations
continues efforts to share what this means to
their viewers as well as to other Gannett-owned
stations, such as Spokane station KREM-TV.
IBEW Local 73 has a contract at that station set
to expire next year. Not to mention the impact
the jurisdictional language could have on other
contracts if it spread.
Members of the unions are puzzled by Gannett’s
bizarre moves to de-professionalize the product.
The union members at both stations are proud of
the long-term commitment to the communities
they serve and are alarmed by what their new
owners are doing to KGW and KING.
Stay informed – go to Protect KGW on
Facebook. A town-hall style rally for KING 5
is planned for later this month. The rally event
details will be posted when available at www.
speea.org (Upcoming SPEEA and labor events).
SPEEA is on
training at SPEEA
Learn how SPEEA can help you at the following
Join SPEEA Benefits Director Matt Kempf,
CFP® for an overview of financial planning
geared toward early to mid-career employees.
The presentation can help you get the most from
your 401(k), with data management tools such
as Financial Engines, for example.
• Wichita: Tuesday, July 21, 5 to 7 p.m.
• Everett: Thursday, July 23, 4:30 to 6:30 p.m.
• Tukwila: Thursday, July 30, to 7 p.m.
Food is provided – RSVP where you plan to
attend and note dietary restrictions.
• SPEEA Wichita – firstname.lastname@example.org or
call (316) 682-0262
• SPEEA Everett – email@example.com or call
• SPEEA Tukwila – firstname.lastname@example.org or
call (206) 433-0991
Directions to the halls are at www.speea.org
(Look under Contact Us/SPEEA Halls).