Global Cleveland's Asian Initiative Designed to Attract, Retain Asians

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Global Cleveland recently launched its Asian Initiative, a program to attract and retain Asian talent to the region. “Asians are now the fastest growing and most educated population in the U.S.,” says Meran Rogers, Global Cleveland’s director of community affairs, adding that Cleveland has seen a 49-percent increase in Asians between 2000 and 2010.

Those numbers prompted Global Cleveland to reach out to various groups in the Asian community to identify focus areas of the initiative. The group hosted 30 Asian community leaders in March at a launch meeting. “We identified three main strategies for the overall Global Cleveland mission,” says Rogers. “To attract and retain Asian newcomers who will support the growth and talent needs of businesses and industries; assist Asian newcomers and young professionals in establishing roots; and foster an inclusive and welcoming community for Asians.”

Rogers points out that while Global Cleveland is spearheading the initiative, it’s really about supporting the goals of an already-strong Asian presence in Cleveland. “It was really important to work with all of the leaders and find out what they want to do and then help them do it,” says Rogers. Global Cleveland is working closely with groups like MotivAsians for Cleveland and Asian Services in Action (Asia, Inc.) to attain these goals.

Part of the program includes promoting the job fairs in IT, biomedical research and healthcare, as well as educating employers on the importance of hiring international talent. “Over half the population is foreign-born, so a lot of growth has to do with immigration,” says Rogers. “We’re really promoting the job fairs to the Asian community.”

Rogers says they also plan to be involved in plans to better connect AsiaTown. “Cleveland is known for AsiaTown and there are plans for improvement, to find ways to connect the different areas because they are very cut up,” she says. “Retention is dependent on how connected people feel.”

Source: Meran Rogers
Writer: Karin Connelly