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This Just In: May 8 - 15

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The Pennsylvania Pipeline

Summary: There's a new entity in town seeking to retain young urban professionals! Station: WTAE Channel 4 Reporter: Sheldon Ingram When It Aired: May 1 Running Time: 2 minutes, 8 seconds Visuals: *A giant studio graphic of young men and women standing proudly (and professionally!) in stark, dark suits. * The grassy -- and, on this day, conveniently, sparsely populated -- knolls of the campus of Carnegie Mellon University. Highlights: * When Ingram opens, "It's [no] secret that this region has struggled to retain young professionals. It's going to take a mighty effort to reverse that trend." * When he introduces us to this young man: "Mike Tyson is 22 years old. On May 18, he graduates from CMU with a degree in electrical and computer engineering, and then he leaves Pittsburgh to work for a defense contractor in Washington, D.C. Tyson says Pittsburgh was his first choice to launch his career. He sent out 50 copies of his resume." * When Tyson offers, "I'd say a lot of the people that go here would like to stay here. It's just the matter of if there's the jobs that are right for us to stay here." * When Ingram cites, "USA Today used data from the 2000 census that shows Pennsylvania ranks fifth among states losing the most young professionals, but the 2020 census might reflect better numbers if the Pittsburgh Regional Compact is successful. It's a program launched by the Allegheny Conference to retain young professionals in the region. They're targeting junior high school students now, rather than waiting until they get in college." * When the conference's Katie Klaber remarks, "[It's] early adoption. It's certainly a long-term investment to build the pipeline here." What We Learned: That somebody in Pittsburgh ought to start a committee to debunk the urban myth of young-urban-professional flight already, before the number of committees exceeds the number of youth they're trying to retain. Unanswered Question: Who's working to keep older (but not that old!) professionals like me from leaving? Huh? News Value: 4. Leave the damn junior-high kids alone, for godssakes. They already have enough peer pressure. Seriously, how far off is the "Pittsburgh Preschool Project"? I can just see the brainwashed kiddos trying to escape through the "pipeline" after they've been liberated and deprogrammed by Pittsburgh defectors living in places like Arizona and Nevada.

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