Educational Institutions

Seattle Education Access

  • Seattle, WA
  • www.seattleeducationaccess.org

Mission Statement

Seattle Education Access (SEA) provides higher
education advocacy and opportunity to people struggling to overcome poverty and
adversity. We help low income and marginalized young people make strong
transitions to local community colleges and four year universities. Our
students are succeeding in college and leaving poverty behind, preparing to
give back to society as professionals and leaders of the next generation.

Main Programs

  1. SEA College Prep Program
  2. SEA College Success Program
  3. Gap Scholarships
Service Areas

Self-reported

Washington

King County, Washington State

ruling year

2002

Principal Officer since 2007

Self-reported

Anthon Smith

Keywords

Self-reported

education, homelessness, at-risk youth, tutoring, college coaching, advocacy, academic advising, scholarship, mentoring

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Also Known As

SEA

EIN

04-3602577

Physical Address

1406 N.E. 50th Street #202

Seattle, WA 98105

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Student Services and Organizations (B80)

Other Youth Development N.E.C. (O99)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

SEA helps young people earn college degrees by providing free academic advising, career counseling, tutoring, books, access to technology, mentoring, advocacy, and scholarships. Our individualized and holistic approach addresses all the barriers that stand between an individual student and academic success. For example, most of our students qualify for financial aid, but often they do not know how to fill out the forms. They may need assistance making good choices in course planning, finding childcare, or getting housing. Our outreach efforts target young adults whose educations have been disrupted by poverty and trauma. Eighty percent of our students have experienced homelessness, and many come from backgrounds of neglect and abuse. We also serve immigrants, low income single parents, and young people who have been involved in the criminal justice system. Each student has a unique situation; our staff and volunteers help the student overcome barriers one by one until he or she is ready for college success. SEA has two linked programs serving youth: ourCollege Prep Program and our College Success Program. We also provideGap Scholarships.
SEA is the only college access program in Washington State that focuses on helping non-traditional students to get back on track with their educations. While other programs help successful high school students transfer directly to college after graduation,  We are a member agency of the Seattle College Access Network and the Washington College Access Network. Our collaborative work through these networks ensures that we are not duplicating resources and that we are efficiently reaching the maximum number of underserved youth.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

SEA College Prep Program

Through
our College
Prep Program, we help youth prepare for higher education and meaningful
employment. Our staff works with each student to create a career and academic
achievement plan tailored to his or her gifts and goals. About half of our
students choose a vocational or technical track, and the other half choose an
academic or professional track. We teach our students how to navigate the
educational system, get federal financial aid, compete for private
scholarships, make a budget, secure housing, register for classes, pick the
right campus and degree program, and effectively access campus services. We
provide free tutoring for the GED and the COMPASS test, which is the placement
test that students take when they start at a community college. SEA provides
GED and COMPASS study guides and testing fees, as well. We collect used books
and redistribute them to youth to build literacy skills. Our goal is to have
each of our students start an appropriate post-secondary program of study on
the right foot, with the resources and skills they need to succeed.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Young Adults (20-25 years) -- currently not in use

Budget

Program 2

SEA College Success Program

Beyond
helping youth enroll in college, we continue to offer supportive services
throughout their college career, as needed, until they graduate and transition
successfully to the workforce. Through our College Success Program, we provide
retention services designed to maximize graduation rates. Many of our students
do not have the safety net of a supportive family of origin, and need community
support during college. The dropout rate during the freshman year of college is
typically high, especially among low income youth. Access is meaningless unless
it is followed by retention and graduation. Accordingly, we continue to offer free
tutoring, mentoring, and advising. For example, we frequently assist students
with the transfer process when they complete their A.A. or A.S. degrees and
move on to four year universities. As our program matures, we now have the
privilege of helping our former students apply to graduate school. We also
refurbish used computers and give them to our students so that they can do
their homework at home, making them independent of the limited hours of campus,
SEA, and public library computer labs.

We
operate a Student Resource Center
in Seattle’s
University District, where students can receive academic advising, career
counseling, mentoring, and tutoring. At our center students can also use the
computers, access the internet, complete and print homework assignments, and use
our phone and fax for business needs. Most importantly, it is a welcoming
community where students can feel celebrated by staff, volunteers, and peers.
We also meet students off site at partner agencies that provide basic services
and employment training to low income and marginalized youth, including formal
partnerships with the King County WorkSource and YouthSource programs in Renton, the Yesler Terrace YMCA in the Central District,
Solid Ground’s Brettler Family
Place, and the Metrocenter YMCA in downtown Seattle. SEA staff also
accompanies students to their college campus and financial aid office to make
sure that their paperwork has been filed properly.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

Program 3

Gap Scholarships

Gap
Scholarships:
SEA awards financial scholarships for tuition, textbooks, bus passes, and other
basic needs to supplement financial aid so students have enough money to afford
safe and stable housing. Students apply for scholarships through SEA by filling
out an application form, writing an essay, submitting letters of
recommendation, and filling out a budget to show their need. Community
volunteers and former SEA students serving on our Scholarship Review Committee
set scholarship policy, interview candidates, and award scholarships three
times per year for fall, winter and spring quarters. With tuition rising at
state colleges and financial aid packages shrinking, gap scholarships are more
important than ever in keeping our students on track for graduation.

Category

Education

Population(s) Served

Young Adults (20-25 years) -- currently not in use

Budget

Service Areas

Self-reported

Washington

King County, Washington State

Funding Needs

The greatest expenses in our annual budget includes: 1) direct financial support for students’ tuition and financial needs and; 2) staff salary costs related to student outreach and recruitment, tutoring, academic advising, and mentorship for our students.

External Reviews

Source: greatnonprofits.org

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

Seattle Education Access
Fiscal year: Jan 01-Dec 31

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Seattle Education Access

Leadership

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  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2014 and 2013
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

Anthon Smith

BIO

Anthon Smith is our Executive Director. Anthon has over thirteen years of non-profit experience, including seven years of international non-profit work. He graduated with bachelor's degrees in both Sociology and Religious Studies from the University of Malta, and is presently completing graduate studies in Non-Profit Leadership at Seattle University. In addition to his work with SEA, Anthon is active in the community as an artist, activist, and band manager.

STATEMENT FROM THE Principal Officer

"In 2011 we have had the opportunity as
an organization to reflect and evaluate our recent growth, and to look ahead to
new ways to grow and improve our program. As an SEA college graduate recently
wrote to me:

This past year we have continued to
focus our energy on serving more students while maintaining the quality of
service that we provide them. We have
built strong partnerships throughout King
County where we can reach
underserved low-income young people and provide them college access services on
location at partner sites. By pursuing partnerships with other agencies, we can
offer valuable services to our students at a variety of locations around the
County and we are able to leverage resources and scholarships for our
students. Based on the success of the
partnerships we have established with community base organizations around ,
we have recently been able to secure multi-year funding for scholarships and
two new full-time program staff. Generous grants from College Spark, The
Washington Woman’s Foundation, Ceres Foundation and many others, will allow us
to plan strategically as we continue to expand the reach and capacity of our
program. Through our new staff positions
we will be able to establish additional partnerships at several new locations in South King County. 

Anthon Smith, Executive Director"

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Cristina Gonzalez

Seattle University

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section, which enables organizations and donors to transparently share information about essential board leadership practices. Self-reported by organization


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?