POTSDAM, NY (05/05/2017) (readMedia)-- SUNY Potsdam's Center for Applied Learning has been connecting students and businesses in the North Country since its inception last year. The new Center has created a significant economic impact for the local economy. Between the Summer of 2016 and the end of this semester, 329 students have participated in unpaid internships where they gained valuable real-world training as interns at the College and local businesses. Their work has created a total economic impact of $550,880 in that short amount of time. This number is based on 50,080 hours of work by SUNY Potsdam interns at $11 per hour.
"We generated $500,000 in labor savings for our local community, assuming that each intern's work is best valued at minimum wage. However, many of our interns are bringing advanced job skills to their work sites, and providing services which would be priced well above minimum wage in a competitive job market," said Jenica Rogers, the director of libraries and college archives at SUNY Potsdam.
One of those interns, Anneliese Bishop '17, is currently wrapping up a social media internship at Brasher Falls Central School through the Center for Applied Learning. Bob Stewart, superintendent for Brasher Falls Central School, said that Bishop has been doing a fantastic job for the school. "With her assistance, we are able to distribute more information to our community than ever before. She is creating a successful framework for this position and the future partnership between Brasher Falls Central and SUNY Potsdam," he said.
Even before the Center opened in a newly renovated space in the Frederick W. Crumb Memorial Library in 2016, SUNY Potsdam students have been making an impact on the local economy through these unpaid internships for college credit. Between the Summer of 2015 and the Spring of 2016, 354 student interns provided a financial impact of $455,440 through 41,440 hours of work on SUNY Potsdam's campus and at local businesses. In turn, students have benefited from hands-on training that will prepare them for the job market.
The Center brings together the offices of Experiential Education, International Education and Student Research in a one stop shop at the heart of campus. Students seeking applied learning experiences have visited the Center, learned about their options, and received one-on-one advising as they plan for academic internships, service learning classes, student research projects, study abroad opportunities and entrepreneurial endeavors. For more information about the Center for Applied Learning or if you're interested in hosting a SUNY Potsdam student at your business, please visit: https://www.potsdam.edu/academics/appliedlearning.
Founded in 1816, The State University of New York at Potsdam is one of America's first 50 colleges-and the oldest institution within SUNY. Now in its third century, SUNY Potsdam is distinguished by a legacy of pioneering programs and educational excellence. The College currently enrolls approximately 4,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Home to the world-renowned Crane School of Music, SUNY Potsdam is known for its challenging liberal arts and sciences core, distinction in teacher training and culture of creativity. To learn more, visit www.potsdam.edu.