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Brain drain problem in Pittsburgh solved?

Graduating students prove what census numbers are starting to show: High-tech jobs, medical institutions, higher education and finance are motivating them to stay in Western Pennsylvania, reports the Tribune Review.

"Pittsburgh has so much to offer young people, from available jobs to high quality of life and affordability, and I'm happy to remind them that Pittsburgh has what they need and want after college," Mayor Luke Ravenstahl said. His "Pick Pittsburgh" initiative touts the region's benefits in a letter to graduating seniors at Pitt, Carnegie Mellon and Point Park universities and Community College of Allegheny County.

"Pittsburgh is very friendly for young people just starting out," said Totten, 21, a Churchill native who will graduate from Pitt with an exercise science degree. She lined up a job in West Mifflin while she works toward a master's degree online from California University of Pennsylvania. "It's inexpensive, and I had no problem finding a job."

Western Pennsylvania began suffering an "inordinate" job and population decline when the domestic steel industry began to suffer in the 1980s, said Chris Briem, chair of Pitt's Center for Social and Urban Research and an expert on census data analysis. In 1980, the number of people ages 18 to 24 living in the city was 67,445, census figures show. By 1990, the number fell to 51,692.

"Specifically, the people who were leaving were the young, 20-something, professional and educated workers who we really needed to transform and move our economy forward," Briem said.

By 2000, the number fell to 49,461, but the 2010 census numbers show the first increase in 30 years: a 16 percent boost to 57,745 people ages 18-24 living in Pittsburgh.

The rebound over the past decade came from investments and growth in the high-tech industry, engineering, the medical field, higher education and finance, said Court Gould, executive director of the nonprofit Sustainable Pittsburgh.
"It essentially took a generation, an entire career-span, to turn this around," Gould said.

Read the full story here.

Katz Grad School video spotlights things students love about Pittsburgh

There's a competition brewing among Katz Graduate School of Business students and the videos they're creating for their social media class. We've seen mentions on Facebook and Twitter and youtube and now you'll see one of them here. This video is from an enterprising Katz student who thought we would be interested in her group's work. Why? Because it's about Katz students' love of Pittsburgh and how they explore the city. And it has cool music by Destry.

We're so there.

See the video here.

CMU study asks, who gives a tweet?

In a joint research project, CMU learned a few things about how valuable--or not--tweets are. "Twitter users say only a little more than a third of the tweets they receive are worthwhile. Other tweets are either so-so or, in one out of four cases, not worth reading at all.

"If we understood what is worth reading and why, we might design better tools for presenting and filtering content, as well as help people understand the expectations of other users," said Paul André, a post-doctoral fellow in Carnegie Mellon's Human-Computer Interaction Institute (HCII) and lead author of the study.

Read the full story here.

Pittsburgh #2 in new job creation

Pittsburgh had a 37% hiring rate and a 15% letting go rate, resulting in a score of 22, second only to Oklahoma City in new job creation in a recently released Gallup poll.

"The results are based on Gallup Daily tracking interviews with U.S. workers conducted from January-December 2011. Gallup interviewed at least 698 respondents in each of the 50 largest metro areas in 2011, including 1,000 or more in 38 metro areas. Nationwide in 2011, an average of 31% of U.S. workers said their employer was hiring, while 18% said their employer was letting workers go, for a U.S. Job Creation Index score of +13.

The top-performing large metro areas have above-average hiring levels combined with below-average levels of letting go, resulting in high Job Creation Index scores. On the other side of the spectrum, some metro areas have relatively low hiring combined with high levels of letting go, resulting in low Job Creation Index scores."


Read the full article here.

Pittsburgh leads in small business

"Pittsburgh boasts the strongest small-business sector in the Eastern United States, according to the latest annual ratings by On Numbers. This year's first-place finish caps a two-year ascent by Pittsburgh, which ranked 17th in On Numbers' regional standings in 2010 and sixth a year ago. Rounding out the top five in the East this year are New York City, Washington, Rochester and Albany."

Read the full story here.

Experienced Dreamer finalist gets press in hometown paper

The hometown paper picked up the story of Experienced Dreamer finalist Jeffrey Metzler from Martinsburg, PA, the only finalist who is from Pennsylvania. If he lived just 5 miles closer to Pittsburgh, he wouldn't qualify.

f"Metzler, 57, is one of five finalists in the "Imagine Pittsburgh Experienced Dreamers" contest, which invites "people from all over the country to take a fresh look at Pittsburgh as a place to live, work, run a business, raise a family and realize their dreams," according to the contest's website. Applicants must be 45 or older, live more than 100 miles from Pittsburgh and have lived away from the city for more than 10 years.

Public online voting to decide the winner will take place through April 15, and being the only contestant who currently lives in Pennsylvania, Metzler hopes to be the hometown favorite.

"Keeping oneself in groceries and paying the bills sort of keeps your attention focused on the task at hand," Metzler said, as he's made a career in advertising, marketing and visual communications for the past 36 years. "It's difficult to start something else, particularly something that has capital investment involved like this would have."

Metzler is talking about his proposal for what he would do with the money - to open a studio for both his own printmaking and as a "creative incubator" for other Pittsburgh artists.
"I envision an atmosphere, a creative space where artists can collaborate, exchange ideas, share resources and provide support for one another," he said. "I think it would be a great benefit for the creative and artistic community."

Read the full story here.

Keeping the Promise: Putting 9th graders on the college path

Are you turned on to PublicSource yet? If not, here's your entry to the local in-depth journalism site with this feature article about the Pittsburgh Promise and the Promise-Readiness Corps.

"The Promise-Readiness Corps is part of the larger Empowering Effective Teachers plan, crafted by the district and the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers and using a $40 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. The goal of the teachers plan is to have more than 80 percent of students meet a 2.5 Grade Point Average and a 90 percent attendance rate required for a Promise scholarship and then complete a college degree."

Read the full story here.

Leadership Pittsburgh class advocates for Main Streets

The Leadership Pittsburgh class XVIII is advocating for Pittsburgh's Main Streets, which are facing budget cuts, when they head to Harrisburg soon in a day long session to meet legislators. In preparation and with help from the URA, the class took tours of eight Main St. neighborhoods, from West End to East Liberty and shared their impressions in this article.

"Participants said it was an eye-opening day and an education in the challenges of urban neighborhood development."

Read the full story here.

The Rust Belt revival: what's happening in Pittsburgh

In a series about rust belt cities, Pittsburgh gets its turn in the spotlight with news ranging from Waffle Shop and Conflict Kitchen to Grown Pittsburgh and Hip Hop's new artists.

Read the full article here.

Dislocation: A travelogue of Pittsburgh from two young Germans

From falling in love with Espresso a Mano to riding the inclines, the blog posts from Christina and Gabi, two young women from Germany out to discover the real Pittsburgh, make for entertaining and informative reading.

Read their blogs here.

Mellon Arena gone but lives online

While the physical building is now gone, Mellon Arena lives on online thanks to Allpointe Systems and the Sports and Exhibition Authority.

Read the full story here.

"412creative" launches, a blog about the best advertising and design in Pittsburgh

Tom Schneider just launched a new site, 412creative, devoted to showcasing smart and effective design and advertising in Pittsburgh. 'The website was motivated by a nagging question, one that pops up frequently when looking through magazines, surfing the Web or watching the news: “Who did that?” As in, “who wrote that copy,” “who ux’d that website,” or “who directed that spot?”

412creative will answer those questions, plus give you the stories behind the work, introduce you to the creative teams who conceived it and make sense of how and why a piece was produced the way it was.

We’re lucky to live in an area that has amazing creative resources. Pittsburgh’s ad agencies, design firms and tech companies compete on a national and global level. It’s our goal to curate the best area work."

View the new website here.

How to find meaningful work in Pittsburgh? Rework.

"ReWork, a startup that came out of the 2011 Unreasonable Institute, may be the first company that places young professionals directly with "disruptive, world changing organizations"--including non-profits and all manner of triple-bottom-line businesses," says fastcoexist.com. "ReWork currently works with 15 to 25 companies (for now, most are in Pittsburgh and Boulder, Colorado, but that will change). That’s a number that will expand greatly once ReWork brings on more job candidates. The startup has 130 candidates across the country in some stage of the screening process. That may not sound impressive, but ReWork just opened up for full-time placements February--and everything has been through word of mouth. ReWork expects to have its first five to six full-time job placements within the next three months."

Read the full story here.

How do children learn? LearnLab explores teaching and learning

The questions have consumed educational researchers for years: how do children learn, and what are the best ways to teach them? Should the emphasis be on practicing basic skills, or on encouraging deep understanding and conceptual thinking, or both? 

“Considering there are many different kinds of knowledge we want our children to acquire, what are the best ways to get them there?” says Kenneth R. Koedinger, professor of human-computer interaction and psychology at Carnegie Mellon University.  “We are looking to develop concepts about what is the right way to teach and to learn.”

Scientists at the Pittsburgh Science of Learning Center, a collaboration between Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Pittsburgh, and its research facility, LearnLab, are seeking these answers through a series of studies using classrooms in more than 50 schools and colleges in the Pittsburgh area and around the country.  


Read the full story here.

Mac Miller reponds to critics, shows depth in latest mix

From XXLMag: “Hundred thousand haters writin’ bout my jams/Want a number one independent album? I’m your man,” Mac Miller raps on his new mixtape’s first proper song, “Desperado.” Both clauses are true, and both are crucial to the makeup of Macadelic. In just the last year, the Pittsburgh rapper has propelled himself from buzzed about upstart to the first indie rapper to hit No. 1 on Billboard in over a decade and a half; from a wide-eyed teenager to one of the most marketable brands."

Read the full story here.
1250 Articles | Page: | Show All
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