Pittsburgh, a Creative Commons Attribution (2.0) image from Tammster1’s photostream

Urban Innovation21 is a public-private partnership that uses 21st century innovation-driven entrepreneurship to boost regional economic development. Its flagship program, Pittsburgh Central Keystone Innovation Zone, concentrates on underserved communities. Last week, Urban Innovation21 announced the largest and most diverse innovation economy based internship program in our region. They project there will be a total of 80 paid internships this year (with 45 interns having already been placed just this summer). Participants include students from Carlow University, Community College of Allegheny County, Duquesne University and Point Park University. The interns benefit from both an improved employment marketability and an expanded professional network.

Screen Capture 2, Courtesy of Urban Innovation21 website

William Generett Jr., president of Urban Innovation21, notes that, “Inclusivity is at the core of all of our programs.” That’s borne out by the statistics for the internships with approximately half going to African American students and 60% going to women.

Screen Capture 1, Courtesy of Urban Innovation21 website

Urban Innovation21 partners and supporters include the Alcoa Foundation, Allegheny County Department of Economic Development, Carlow University, Community College of Allegheny County, Duquesne University, the Heinz Endowments, Hill House Economic Development Corporation, Idea Foundry, Innovation Works, PNC Bank, Point Park University, Richard King Mellon Foundation, Surdna Foundation, UPMC Health Plan and the Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh.

You can learn more about their internship program here.