Jan 16, 2024

20 Min Read

1. What are the main industries in Spokane and what job opportunities do they offer?

Some of the main industries in Spokane include healthcare, education, manufacturing, technology, and tourism.

In the healthcare industry, job opportunities can be found in hospitals, clinics, nursing homes, and other healthcare facilities as doctors, nurses, therapists, technicians, administrators, and support staff.

The education industry offers a variety of job opportunities in schools and universities as teachers/professors, administrative staff, counselors/educators, and other support roles.

In manufacturing industries such as aerospace and food processing, there are job opportunities for engineers, production workers, quality control technicians and managers.

Technology companies in Spokane offer job opportunities for software developers/engineers, IT support specialists/engineers/managers/administrators.

The tourism industry in Spokane offers jobs in hotels/resorts/motels/inns as well as restaurants/bars/tourist attractions/entertainment venues. There are also opportunities in travel agencies/transportation companies/tourism consulting firms.

2. What is the cost of living like in Spokane?

Compared to other cities in Washington state and on a national level as a whole, the cost of living in Spokane is fairly affordable. According to data from Numbeo.com (2021), the average cost of living index for Spokane is 68.97 (with New York City being used as a reference point of 100). This indicates that overall expenses such as housing (rent or purchase), groceries, utilities, transportation and entertainment are lower than many major cities across the country.
Additionally,the median home value in Spokane is $258k compared to the state median value of $419k (Zillow). The average rent for a one-bedroom apartment in Spokane is around $950 per month (Rent Jungle).

3. Is Spokane a growing city?

Yes, Spokane has been experiencing steady growth over recent years. The population has increased by approximately 6% since 2010 according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. This growth is driven by a strong economy, affordable cost of living, and a variety of amenities and attractions that make Spokane an attractive place to live and visit.

Additionally, new businesses and construction projects are ongoing in Spokane, indicating continued development in the city. According to data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2021), Spokane has seen job growth of 2.4% over the past year, which is higher than the national average growth rate of 1.1%. This indicates a healthy job market and potential for future expansion in the city.

2. How does Spokane’s location, near Idaho and Canada, contribute to its economic opportunities?

Spokane’s location near Idaho and Canada contributes to its economic opportunities in several ways:

1. Trade: Being located near the border of Canada and Idaho, Spokane has easy access to two major markets. This allows businesses in Spokane to easily import and export goods, which boosts local trade and economic growth.

2. Tourism: The close proximity to popular tourist destinations like Glacier National Park, Banff National Park, and Coeur d’Alene Lake attracts a significant number of tourists to Spokane. This creates a significant source of income for hotels, restaurants, and other businesses in the area.

3. Natural resources: The region surrounding Spokane is rich in natural resources such as timber, minerals, and agricultural products. This provides diverse opportunities for industries such as forestry, mining, and agriculture.

4. Skilled labor force: Spokane’s location near universities in Canada and nearby states like Idaho means that it has access to a pool of highly skilled workforce. This is attractive to businesses looking to establish themselves in the region.

5. Distribution hub: Due to its central location between major cities like Seattle, Portland, Boise, Calgary, and Vancouver, Spokane serves as an important distribution hub for goods traveling between these cities. This enhances transportation infrastructure and creates jobs in logistics and transportation sectors.

6. Economic partnerships: Being located near other thriving economies such as Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue Metropolitan Area (ranked 15th largest economy globally) and Alberta (one of Canada’s wealthiest provinces), Spokane can form economic partnerships that help boost its own economy.

Overall, Spokane’s location plays a crucial role in providing a favorable business environment for companies looking to establish themselves or expand their operations in the region.

3. What role does Spokane’s diverse population play in creating a variety of opportunities for its citizens?

Spokane’s diverse population plays a significant role in creating a variety of opportunities for its citizens. Here are some ways in which this diversity contributes to the city’s opportunities:

1. Employment opportunities: Spokane’s diverse population brings with it a range of skills and talents, creating a diverse workforce that can cater to various industries and businesses. This diversity also allows for cross-cultural collaborations and exchanges, leading to innovation and growth in the job market.

2. Cultural exchange and understanding: With a mix of different ethnicities, religions, and cultures, Spokane offers its citizens the opportunity to learn from and appreciate a variety of customs, traditions, languages, and perspectives. This promotes tolerance and understanding among community members.

3. Economic growth: A diverse population means a wider consumer base with different needs and preferences. This can drive economic growth by supporting small businesses catering to specific cultural or ethnic groups. It also attracts tourists looking for authentic cultural experiences.

4. Educational opportunities: Spokane’s diverse population provides ample educational opportunities for students to learn about different cultures firsthand from their peers. It also allows for the development of multicultural education programs that enrich the learning experience.

5. Social support: Diversity brings with it a sense of community as people bond over shared cultural backgrounds or experiences. This support system can be beneficial for newcomers who may feel homesick or isolated in a new city.

6. Civic engagement: A diverse population can lead to more representation in local government and civic organizations by individuals from different backgrounds, adding varied perspectives to decision-making processes.

Overall, Spokane’s diverse population adds vibrancy and richness to the city’s social fabric while also providing numerous opportunities for its citizens in various aspects of life.

4. Are there any major universities or colleges located in Spokane and what educational opportunities do they offer?

Yes, there are several major universities and colleges located in Spokane:

1. Gonzaga University is a private, Catholic university that was founded in 1887. It offers undergraduate and graduate programs in various fields such as business, education, engineering, and nursing.

2. Washington State University Spokane is a branch campus of Washington State University, a public research university. It offers undergraduate and graduate programs in areas like medicine, nursing, education, and social work.

3. Eastern Washington University is a public university that offers over 100 undergraduate and graduate programs in fields such as business, education, health science, and environmental studies.

4. Whitworth University is a private Christian liberal arts university with undergraduate programs in areas like the arts, humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences.

5. Community Colleges of Spokane is a community college district that includes Spokane Falls Community College and Spokane Community College. They offer technical certificates, associate degrees, and transfer degree programs in various fields.

6. North Idaho College also has a satellite learning center in Spokane Valley offering vocational certification programs for students looking to enter the workforce or enhance their current skills.

Overall, these universities and colleges provide opportunities for students to pursue higher education in various fields of study within the region.

5. How has the development of the downtown area created new business and career opportunities in Spokane?

The development of the downtown area in Spokane has created new business and career opportunities through a variety of ways, including:

1. Increased commercial spaces: The development of the downtown area has led to an increase in the number of commercial spaces available for businesses to operate. This has allowed for the establishment of new businesses and expansion of existing ones, thereby creating a need for more employees and job opportunities.

2. Revitalization of old buildings: Many old and historic buildings in downtown Spokane have been renovated and repurposed into office spaces, retail stores, restaurants, and other businesses. This has not only preserved the city’s history but also created new job opportunities in construction, maintenance, and management of these spaces.

3. Growth in the hospitality industry: The development of downtown Spokane has led to an increase in tourism and visitors to the area. This has created a demand for services such as hotels, restaurants, bars, and entertainment venues – resulting in a growth in employment opportunities within the hospitality industry.

4. Innovation centers: With the growth of technology companies and startups, there has been an emergence of innovation centers and co-working spaces in downtown Spokane. These provide entrepreneurs with a collaborative environment to work on their ideas while also creating new job opportunities within these industries.

5. Development incentives: The city government offers various incentives to attract businesses to downtown Spokane, such as tax breaks and grants for building renovations or relocation expenses. This has encouraged both small businesses and large corporations to establish a presence in downtown Spokane, leading to more employment opportunities.

6. Attraction of young professionals: The revitalization of downtown Spokane has made it more attractive for young professionals who are seeking job opportunities outside major cities like Seattle or Portland. This influx of younger workers has contributed to making downtown Spokane a hub for new business ventures and career growth.

Overall, the development of downtown Spokane has not only improved the physical landscape but also attracted new businesses, jobs, residents, and visitors – contributing to a thriving economy in the region.

6. Can you describe the entrepreneurial atmosphere in Spokane and what unique opportunities are available for small businesses?

The entrepreneurial atmosphere in Spokane is thriving and dynamic. The city has a strong community of small business owners and entrepreneurs who support each other and collaborate on various projects and initiatives.

One unique opportunity for small businesses in Spokane is the presence of several business incubators and accelerators. These organizations provide resources, funding, and mentorship to help aspiring entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses.

Additionally, Spokane has a low cost of living compared to other major cities, making it an attractive location for entrepreneurs looking to start their own business without breaking the bank. The city also offers a variety of tax incentives and grants for small businesses, which can be beneficial when starting up or expanding.

Lastly, Spokane has a strong focus on sustainability and green technology. This creates opportunities for environmentally-minded businesses to thrive in the city, as there is a growing demand for sustainable products and services. Overall, the supportive community, affordable living costs, incentives, and focus on sustainability make Spokane an excellent location for small business growth.

7. Has the growing technology sector in Spokane created job opportunities for those with tech backgrounds?

Yes, the growing technology sector in Spokane has created job opportunities for those with tech backgrounds. According to a report by the Spokane Workforce Council, the tech industry is one of the fastest-growing sectors in the region, with over 200 technology companies and approximately 7,000 employees. This growth has led to an increase in demand for skilled workers in fields such as software engineering, data analysis, cybersecurity, and information technology. Companies like Microsoft and Amazon have also established a presence in Spokane, providing additional job opportunities for those with tech backgrounds. Additionally, initiatives like the Spokane STEM Summit and partnerships between local colleges and tech companies have been formed to foster talent development and provide pathways into these high-demand careers.

8. What types of outdoor recreational activities are available to residents of Spokane, and how do they add to the quality of life and overall opportunities?

1. Hiking and Biking: Spokane offers a variety of hiking trails ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes in nearby state parks such as Riverside State Park. There are also several bike paths throughout the city for cyclists to enjoy, including the popular Centennial Trail.

2. River Activities: The Spokane River runs through the heart of the city and offers opportunities for water activities such as rafting, kayaking, and fishing. The river also has several public parks along its banks where residents can picnic or relax.

3. Skiing and Snowboarding: With several ski resorts located within an hour’s drive from Spokane, winter sports enthusiasts have plenty of options for skiing, snowboarding, and other snow-related activities.

4. Golfing: There are numerous golf courses in and around Spokane that offer beautiful scenery and challenging gameplay. Many of these courses are open to the public, making it possible for residents to enjoy a round without expensive fees.

5. Camping: In addition to camping at state parks like Riverside State Park, there are also many campgrounds located near lakes and rivers within a short distance from Spokane. These campsites offer an excellent opportunity for outdoor enthusiasts to get away from the city’s hustle and bustle.

6. Rock Climbing: The rocky terrain surrounding Spokane provides ample opportunities for rock climbing enthusiasts. There are both indoor and outdoor rock climbing facilities in the area, making it an accessible activity for all skill levels.

7. Hunting: Hunting is a popular pastime in Spokane’s surrounding areas, with abundant game animals like elk, deer, moose, bear, and turkey available for hunting if properly licensed by the state.

8. Outdoor Events and Festivals: Throughout the year, Spokane hosts various outdoor events and festivals that celebrate different cultures, food, wine, art, music genres or focus on a particular outdoor activity like cycling or paddling on the river. These events provide opportunities for people to come together and enjoy the great outdoors while celebrating the city’s diverse community.

In summary, these different types of outdoor recreational activities add to the quality of life in Spokane by providing residents with opportunities to stay active, connect with nature, and build a sense of community. They also promote physical and mental well-being by offering stress-relief and connections to green spaces. Moreover, these activities contribute to the city’s economy through tourism and outdoor recreation-related businesses, bringing new opportunities for growth and development.

9. Are there any specific organizations or programs focused on providing opportunities for women, minorities, or other underrepresented groups in Spokane?

Yes, there are several organizations and programs focused on providing opportunities for women, minorities, and other underrepresented groups in Spokane. Some notable examples include:

1. Women Helping Women: This organization provides resources, support, and advocacy for low-income women in Spokane.

2. The Carl Maxey Center: This non-profit offers education, job training, mentoring programs, and community development initiatives for African American youth in the Spokane area.

3. YWCA Spokane: This organization promotes racial and gender equity by offering educational programs, leadership development opportunities, and support services for women and girls.

4. Asian/Pacific Islander Community Organization (APIC): APIC focuses on serving the diverse Asian American and Pacific Islander communities in the Spokane area through cultural events, outreach programs, and language assistance services.

5. The Reach Foundation: This non-profit empowers Latino families in the Spokane region through education, health promotion, social services, and economic development initiatives.

6. Spokesman AAI Black Lens/The Lens Project: These media organizations aim to elevate the voices of people of color in Spokane by providing a platform for storytelling and community engagement.

7. LGBTQ+ Youth Resource Center: This resource center offers support services for LGBTQ+ youth in Spokane including housing assistance, employment guidance, healthcare referrals, and counseling services.

8. S.O.A.R.: Serving Our Active Reservists- This organization provides resources and support to military members of color who encounter discrimination or harrassment while on duty.

9. Eastern Washington University Indigenous Cultural Center: This center serves as a gathering place for Native American students at Eastern Washington University to engage with cultural activities(like drum circles), attend workshops/events,,and receive support in navigating higher education systems as an indigenous person

10. How does Spokane’s affordable housing market make it an attractive place for young professionals seeking career opportunities?

Spokane’s affordable housing market provides young professionals with the opportunity to live in a desirable city without breaking the bank. This creates a lower cost of living, allowing individuals to stretch their income further and save for other expenses, such as student loans or retirement. The lower housing costs also mean that young professionals can afford to purchase homes sooner, rather than waiting until later in their careers. This allows them to build equity and invest in the local community.

Additionally, with more affordable housing options available, there is less competition for these properties compared to larger cities with higher housing costs. This can make it easier for young professionals to secure an apartment or home in a desirable location.

Moreover, Spokane’s growing economy offers a variety of job opportunities across different industries. Combine this with the lower cost of living and ample outdoor recreational activities, and Spokane becomes an ideal location for young professionals seeking career growth and work-life balance.

Lastly, Spokane’s sense of community and friendly culture make it an attractive place for young professionals looking to build connections and establish roots in a new city. The affordability of the housing market allows these individuals to settle down comfortably in their new home, making it easier for them to become involved in the community and network with other young professionals.

11. Are there any major arts or cultural institutions in Spokane that offer job or volunteer opportunities?

Some major arts and cultural institutions in Spokane that offer job and volunteer opportunities include:

1. Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture: This museum offers a wide variety of job opportunities, including positions in education, administration, marketing, and more. They also have a dedicated volunteer program for individuals interested in supporting the museum’s mission.

2. Spokane Symphony Orchestra: This professional orchestra regularly hires musicians, as well as administrative staff and production crew members. They also have volunteer opportunities for ushering, event staffing, and administrative support.

3. Fox Theater: The historic Fox Theater hosts a variety of performing arts events throughout the year and often has openings for event staff, production crew, and more. They also offer volunteer opportunities through their Friends of the Fox program.

4. Spokane Civic Theatre: This community theater offers paid employment opportunities in various departments such as artistic, production, box office, and more. They also have a dedicated group of volunteers who assist with various tasks throughout the theater.

5. Spokane County Library District: The library district frequently hires librarians, as well as support staff for their many branches throughout the county. Volunteer opportunities are also available through their Foundation or Friends groups.

6. Spokane Public Schools Fine Arts Department: Local schools are always looking to hire talented educators for their fine arts programs. Individuals can check the district’s website for open positions or contact specific schools directly.

7. Spokane Arts: As the city’s official arts agency, Spokane Arts works to support local artists and art organizations through various programs and events. They occasionally have job openings or volunteer opportunities available on their website.

8.Spokane Folklore Society: This organization promotes traditional music and dance through concerts, workshops, dances, and more. Volunteers contribute to planning events and helping during performances.

9.Spokane Film Project: This nonprofit supports independent filmmakers by providing resources such as mentorship programs, screenings, workshops, etc., all run by volunteers donating their time to further the art of film.

10. Spokane Arts and Culture Alliance: This group connects artists, organizations, and audiences through a diverse range of programs. Volunteers can help with events, outreach, and more.

11. Spokane County United Nations Association: This local affiliate of the UN promotes education about global issues and solutions while bringing people together to take action in support of the UN’s sustainable global goals. Volunteers organize educational programs and promote dialogue that fosters understanding, cooperation, tolerance, and peace.

12. Can you speak to the sense of community in Spokane and how it contributes to networking and professional development opportunities?

The sense of community in Spokane is very strong and has a significant impact on networking and professional development opportunities. Spokane is known for its friendly and welcoming atmosphere, making it easy for professionals to connect with one another.

There are several organizations and groups that facilitate networking events in Spokane, providing opportunities for professionals to get together and build relationships. These include professional associations, business clubs, and community organizations. Many of these events are open to the public and offer a great platform for individuals to expand their network.

Additionally, the small size of the city allows professionals to easily connect with one another through mutual acquaintances or shared interests. This makes it easier to build relationships and find potential mentors or collaborators.

Furthermore, the supportive business environment in Spokane encourages professional development through various programs, workshops, and conferences. These opportunities not only provide learning experiences but also bring professionals together from different industries, creating more opportunities for networking.

Overall, the strong sense of community in Spokane fosters a collaborative environment where individuals can come together to support each other’s growth and success. This creates numerous opportunities for networking and professional development that can contribute to one’s career advancement.

13. With its close proximity to nature, are there any environmentally-focused job or volunteer opportunities available in Spokane?

Yes, there are a variety of environmentally-focused job and volunteer opportunities available in Spokane. Some examples include:

1. City government jobs: The City of Spokane has a number of sustainability-related job positions, including sustainability coordinator and waste diversion specialist.

2. Nonprofit organizations: There are several nonprofit organizations in Spokane that work on environmental issues, such as The Lands Council, Friends of the Falls, and Spokane Riverkeeper. These organizations often have volunteer opportunities available for individuals interested in conservation or environmental activism.

3. Parks and recreation departments: Spokane has a robust parks and recreation system, with many jobs and volunteer opportunities related to maintaining and preserving the city’s green spaces.

4. Environmental education programs: Organizations like Spark Central and the West Valley Outdoor Learning Center offer educational programs focused on environmental science and sustainability, which may have opportunities for volunteers or instructors.

5. Local farms and community gardens: Several farms and community gardens in the area offer volunteer opportunities for those interested in sustainable agriculture or gardening.

6. Clean-up events: Groups like Adopt-A-Stream Foundation organize regular clean-up events along the Spokane River, providing an opportunity for individuals to help keep the river healthy and clean for wildlife and recreational use.

7. Sustainable business initiatives: The Sustainable Business Initiative program through Greater Spokane Incorporated connects businesses with resources to become more environmentally friendly and offers volunteer opportunities for individuals to assist with these efforts.

Overall, there are many ways to get involved in environmentally-focused activities in Spokane through a mix of job opportunities and volunteering options.

14. In terms of transportation, are there any plans for developing public transit options that would open up more job possibilities for commuters?

There are a variety of plans in place to improve public transit options for commuters. Local and regional transportation agencies often collaborate to plan and implement new routes and services, such as expanding bus lines or constructing new light rail systems. Additionally, there may be initiatives to encourage employers to offer flexible work schedules or telecommuting options, thereby reducing the need for daily commutes. However, these plans and initiatives may vary depending on the specific city or region in question. It is important for individuals to stay updated on local transportation projects and initiatives and advocate for improved public transit options in their area.

15. What industries have seen recent growth in the city of Spokane, creating new employment prospects?

Some industries that have seen recent growth in Spokane, WA include healthcare and social assistance, educational services, technology and information services, construction, and manufacturing. There has also been growth in the leisure and hospitality industry, particularly with the rise of tourism in the area. Additionally, agriculture and forestry remain important industries in Spokane.

16. Does Spokane have a strong local government presence, offering potential jobs or other civic engagement-related openings?

Yes, Spokane has a strong local government presence that offers potential job opportunities and opportunities for civic engagement. The city is governed by a mayor and a city council, who are responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the city, making policy decisions, and managing public services. In addition to traditional government jobs, there are also many opportunities for civic engagement through committees, commissions, and volunteer programs. These roles allow citizens to have a direct impact on their community by participating in decision-making processes and helping to shape policies and programs. There are also several local non-profit organizations that work closely with the city government to address various issues in the community. Overall, Spokane offers many avenues for individuals to get involved in local government and make a difference in their community.

17. How is the cost of living compared to other cities across Washington state, making it an attractive location for individuals seeking various employment options?

The cost of living in Bremerton, WA is slightly below the state average. According to Sperling’s Best Places, Bremerton has a cost of living index of 115.2, compared to the Washington state average of 120.4. This means that Bremerton is more affordable than many other cities in Washington.

Since Bremerton is a smaller city and located outside of major metropolitan areas like Seattle or Bellevue, the cost of living tends to be lower overall. Housing costs, however, may still be high due to the city’s desirable location on the Puget Sound.

Overall, Bremerton may be an attractive location for individuals seeking various employment options due to its lower cost of living compared to other cities in Washington. This means that salaries and wages may go further and allow for a higher standard of living while still having access to job opportunities in industries such as aerospace, technology, healthcare, and government/military.

18. Given the recent influx of tourists visiting Spokane, have there been any new opportunities created in the hospitality or tourism industry?

Yes, the increased tourism in Spokane has created new job opportunities in the hospitality and tourism industry. Many hotels, restaurants, and other businesses are hiring more staff to accommodate the influx of visitors. Additionally, there have been new businesses opening up in response to the growing tourism market, such as tour companies, souvenir shops, and event planning services. This has also led to an increase in demand for local products and services, providing opportunities for small businesses to thrive in the hospitality and tourism sector.

19. How does Spokane’s proximity to natural resources, such as lakes and forests, contribute to its economic opportunities?

Spokane’s proximity to natural resources, such as lakes and forests, contributes to its economic opportunities in several ways:

1. Tourism: The city’s location near scenic lakes and lush forests makes it a popular destination for tourists seeking outdoor activities such as hiking, fishing, boating, and skiing. This creates job opportunities in the tourism industry, including hospitality, lodging, food and beverage services.

2. Outdoor recreation industry: Spokane’s access to natural resources also supports the growth of the outdoor recreation industry. Companies related to outdoor gear and equipment manufacturing, adventure sports, and eco-tourism have established a presence in Spokane due to its proximity to nature.

3. Timber production: The abundant forests surrounding Spokane provide a source of timber for the local lumber industry. This creates jobs in logging, lumber mills, and related industries.

4. Agriculture: The fertile soils in the region surrounding Spokane support a thriving agricultural sector. Large-scale farming operations produce crops such as wheat, barley, apples, and cherries. This creates employment opportunities for farmers as well as workers in food processing plants.

5. Hydroelectric power: The numerous lakes and rivers near Spokane offer hydropower potential for electricity production. This has attracted energy companies to invest in hydroelectric projects in the area and provides a reliable source of renewable energy for homes and businesses.

Overall, the availability of natural resources near Spokane has helped diversify its economy beyond traditional industries like manufacturing and has contributed to its overall economic growth and stability.

20. Are there any initiatives or programs in place to promote and support local businesses and entrepreneurs in order to enhance career prospects in Spokane?

Yes, there are several initiatives and programs in place to promote and support local businesses and entrepreneurs in Spokane. Some of these include:

1. Launch Spokane: This program is designed to provide resources, support, and networking opportunities for entrepreneurs and startups in Spokane.

2. StartUp Spokane: This program offers workshops, classes, and other resources to help entrepreneurs develop their ideas and start successful businesses.

3. ACE Program (Accelerating Commercialization & Entrepreneurship): This program provides funding, mentoring, training, and other resources to early-stage technology companies in Spokane.

4. Small Business Development Center (SBDC): The SBDC offers free counseling, workshops, and other assistance to small businesses in the area.

5. Greater Spokane Incorporated (GSI): GSI offers a variety of programs and services to support economic development and growth of businesses in the region.

6. Empowerment Community Development Corporation: This organization focuses on supporting minority-owned businesses through educational workshops, consulting services, networking events, and access to capital.

7. Local University Programs: Several universities in Spokane offer entrepreneurship-focused programs such as Gonzaga University’s Congress of Economic Development or Eastern Washington University’s InnovATE program.

8. Networking Events: There are numerous networking events held throughout the year that provide opportunities for local businesses to connect with each other and potential customers or partners.

Overall, these initiatives and programs aim to create a supportive ecosystem for local businesses and entrepreneurs to thrive in Spokane. By providing resources, education, mentorship, funding opportunities, and connections, they ultimately enhance career prospects for individuals looking to start or grow their own business in the city.


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