The Latino population in the Pittsburgh region may be small, but it is growing steadily and many of its professionals are making a positive mark here.
The Hispanic population in Allegheny County grew by 71 percent between 2000 and 2010, according to U.S. Census figures. But that still numbers just 20,000 individuals - about 1.6 percent of the county's total population.
Economic development leaders say more skilled workers and professional talent must be attracted to the Pittsburgh region in order to keep up with a coming labor shortage. That gap will widen as Baby Boomers retire and new jobs emerge that require post-high school training – much of it from technical and community colleges.
The Latino outreach campaign also touts The Pittsburgh Promise, a scholarship program in which graduates of Pittsburgh Public Schools may earn up to $40,000 for college if they maintain at least 90 percent attendance and at least a 2.5 GPA.
A few of them are highlighted in a series of videos as part of the new Latino outreach initiative by Vibrant Pittsburgh, an organization working to grow the regional economy by attracting diverse people to the workforce.