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Paul Allen recently received a wonderful surprise — a custom-made Seahawks guitar.

Who made it? The Power2Work Foundation, an organization that teaches high school students valuable work skills in the technical arts.

Power2Work board member and founder of RISEcx David Richards wrote about the organization’s mission on LinkedIn, and how it is helping students become “future engineers, product developers and builders,” he told us via email. The org is focused on helping high schools “build products of value as a way to make education matter.”

But why a guitar for the Microsoft co-founder?

“After partnering with our team of rock star teachers, we discussed the types of projects that would get kids hooked on our program,” writes Richards. “In the discovery phase, GeekWire news featured a custom Seahawks amp Paul Allen commissioned for the Super Bowl.

“The article inspired the P2W team to launch what has become the Power2Play (P2P) guitar-building program. P2P is a skill based high school program providing CTE teachers all they need to teach students how to build custom electric guitars.”

Allen was plenty pleased to get his new Seahawks guitar, as you can see in the picture below:

Photo via YouTube/Power2Work Foundation
Photo via YouTube/Power2Work Foundation

High school administrators say the program is “helping disengaged students find purpose,” according to Richards’ LinkedIn post.

By engaging high school shop teachers and other partners, they’ve outfitted over 30 high schools throughout Oregon, Washington and Alaska with digital fab labs that include industry-standard software and the latest prototyping equipment. Kids learn to build everything from guitars to houses.

The backstory of Power2Work is very cool, too. It was founded by Dave Dahl, who learned computer assisted drafting (CAD) while in prison. Dahl went on to co-found Dave’s Killer Bread. On the org’s site, Dahl credits learning the skill with changing the trajectory of his life, and he now wants to pass along “teaching kids the skills and habits necessary for a better, more productive life,” according to the site.

Interested in getting involved? Visit Power2Work’s site.

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