Report: Pittsburgh Promise Off To A Solid Start

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — A new study by the Rand Corporation found that the Pittsburgh Promise scholarship program is off to a solid start in its early years.

Today administrators of the Pittsburgh Promise gave a status update of its own on the participants, educators and families who are involved in the program.

The Pittsburgh Promise will pay up to $40,000 for a college education for any Pittsburgh Public School student who qualifies for the program.

One of those recipients was Vanessa Thompson, a 2008 graduate of Westinghouse High School who is now a senior at Chatham College, preparing to graduate.

“It helped to know that so many people cared about me,” Thompson added. “People that didn’t know me from anywhere.”

By the fall, 3200 Pittsburgh Public School graduates will have received financial assistance from the Promise program since 2008.

“We have some young people that are going to be coming out of college this next spring — some of whom, without the Promise, may not have been able to do that,” Pittsburgh Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Linda Lane explained.

Executive Director Saleem Ghuvril says $25,000,000 has been spent on scholarships. He says the program has 74 million of 147 million in pledges — with UPMC leading the way.

“This is community wide,” Ghuvril explained, “and we’re seeing it at every level from those who are able to give us as little as $2 or $3 — and they know that their $2 or $3 leverages some match from UPMC and then those who have pledged to us $30 million.”

But the program is far from satisfied with early results. Forty-one percent of the participants are African-American students, who make up 57-percent of the district.

“It appears that all feet are pointed in the right direction toward high school completion, college completion, and we hope eventually return to Pittsburgh to be part of the local workforce,“ Ghuvril adds.

The Pittsburgh Promise has also been getting some national attention. A national conference will be held here in Pittsburgh next month with educators from other cities who are interested in starting a similar program in their own communities.

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  • Dangram

    I have really tried but I am done with your site. It is slow…hard to use and doesn’t have nearly the local news the other sites have. KDKA had been in my Favorites for years…..and today it is officially removed. Enjoy you partnership with CBS……because they pulled you right out of the compettion for local news coverage.

  • Vinny

    I agree, I log on to 4-11 and I don’t think channel 2 is in the same city! Were do these young kids and old reporters get the stories they go out and waste time on?

  • Dave

    I agree with the slowness of KDKA’s website and I agree that other media sites have more current news. I grew up with KDKA, and I don’t want to see a station that was ahead of the curve fall behind – wake up!!!!! Also, regarding the girl who cried wolf – she needs to get her backside slammed for that one! Waste of police time, the community’s time and not to mention the emotional stress she put her familiy through.

    • Lou Grant

      The young girl gots herself on the news and thats what KDKA does, find enough news to fill up 5 hours every night

  • Mr Bill

    As long as Marty Griffin is on, I’ll never watch, I just go on this site to read the humorous comments

  • Critter

    Actually, this site reports breaking news quicker that the others. Been that way for a few years. I monitor police depts and kd is the best. Sorry.

  • Vinny

    Except like when Washington road floods and all the reporters are in Oakland because the power was out

  • Hotel

    Do u mean Washington Blvd? If so, too close to Larimer. Stay away.

  • Sadcityresident

    Pittsburgh promise, what a joke…..Make the non profits pat their fair share of taxes and the city wont be broke…besides how many city kids actually go to college…maybe 12-13 1 year that dont end up on drugs, selling them or stripping…geez!

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