A Pittsburgh internship program is aimed at keeping local talent from leaving the city after they graduate college, as well as promoting a more diverse workforce. The Pittsburgh Passport program (“discover what it’s like to live, work, and play in Pittsburgh”), a collaboration between local employers and schools, launched last year and was well received. It drew more than 1,500 participants from around the world with in-person events like personal development seminars, volunteer opportunities, a kickball tournament, and kayaking excursions.

This year, in-person was off the table, so the program went virtual—and actually increased the number of participants to 1,700. In June and July, the program offered 24 Zoom programs, which ran the gamut from an open mic night to a tech talk series covering fintech, space missions, and startups.

New this year was a case competition that challenged teams to address three topics: back to school during COVID-19, social justice issues, and welcome to Pittsburgh. The winners shared a $30,000 prize and won a private networking event with employers.