Neighborhood Stories: One Brick At a Time


The Trade Institute of Pittsburgh (TIP) is a success story, but there is another story behind it. First are the amazing students at TIP, most of whom were formerly incarcerated. These young students, some in their 30s, complete a 10-week program, learning masonry and other fundamental skills of the construction industry, then they move on to jobs that pay $15 an hour or better, rebuilding their lives as they rebuild our city. their rate of success in securing employment is 94 percent. Their rate of recidivism is 9 percent, versus the statewide rate of 42 percent. It is a winning situation for all of us: the training cost per student is $7,800 for the 10-week program versus the cost of one year of incarceration at $42,000. TIP relies on grants, volunteers, and philanthropy, resulting in no cost to students.

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