YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Transitioning from sports to business news is quite the leap, John Vargo allows, but the veteran reporter says he welcomes the challenge.
Vargo has worked as a sports reporter for the Tribune-Chronicle in Warren since 1998. In his new role at The Business Journal – his first day was Jan. 4 – Vargo will focus on Brain Gain, an editorial program launched in October 2019 to promote workforce development and a culture of entrepreneurship.
Vargo says he looks forward to interacting with young people and “seeing their perspective not only on life, but on how they can become a vital cog in this Mahoning Valley.” He’s also interested in reporting on how local businesses are working with young residents to show them they can secure lucrative jobs here and create a good life without leaving the region.
Keeping our kids here hits home with Vargo, whose son is a senior at Cardinal Mooney High School and plans to study video production at Youngstown State University.
“I couldn’t be happier that he’s going to stay around and be a part of this area,” Vargo says.
Vargo earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism at Kent State University. “Every person has a story to tell, and I’m looking forward to telling their stories,” he says.
New to Brain Gain coverage in 2021 is the Navigators program, which spotlights organizations and people who connect students to mentors, business leaders, companies and career opportunities.
Many organizations are already making an impact through mentorship opportunities and pre-apprenticeship programs. By telling these stories, Vargo will show how anyone, including parents, can be a navigator. This is essential to changing negative perceptions about the Valley and convincing our youth to create their future here.
Also new in 2021 is the Brain Gain partnership with the Youngstown Business Incubator. The YBI is launching initiatives to plant the seeds of entrepreneurship among young people and minorities. Those programs, their participants and missions, will be covered extensively.
Pictured: John Vargo brings more than 20 years of reporting experience to Brain Gain.