Summer in Residence: A Local Solution
Every summer, St. Norbert has empty beds. And you’ve got interns. If you struggle finding housing for them, your problems may be over.
About five years ago, SNC offered summer housing to a local intern or two following a spontaneous discussion on the topic with an area businessperson. By last summer, 25 interns from seven different local companies, including Georgia-Pacific, KBX Industries and Breakthrough Fuel, were bunking down on campus. And the college has room for more. The benefits for the business community and its interns are many.
For local businesses, housing your interns at St. Norbert is a more affordable option than renting an apartment or contracting for short-term executive housing. For the interns, who are typically college students, living on another college campus is a comfortable arrangement. The campus setting also affords them amenities such as the Mulva Library, Mulva Family Fitness & Sports Center, and any summer programming the college sponsors. Plus the location is perfect; it’s just a short walk to downtown De Pere, with its shops and restaurants.
Interns have been staying at the college’s multi-level townhouses, which feature three bedrooms, dining and living areas, two bathrooms, and a full-size kitchen, plus a shared balcony overlooking the Fox River. The units are air-conditioned and include Wi-Fi and cable. But Mike Peckham, St. Norbert’s director of housing operations, says future plans call for housing the interns in Gries Hall. The newer facility is the most popular lodging option among St. Norbert students, and offers four-bedroom apartments plus a fitness center, laundry room, meeting room and reflection lounge.
Mechanical solutions firm Tweet/Garot used to require its interns to secure their own summer housing, which was a difficult and expensive proposition. In 2015, it began placing its interns at St. Norbert – two in 2015 and one in 2016.
Pat Rhodes, human resources associate at Tweet/Garot, says the lodging’s affordable cost and ready availability are huge positives, as is the clean and safe campus. “As a parent of four former college students, it’s great to be able to provide an environment that parents can feel good about sending their son or daughter to, in a sometimes new and strange city and/or state,” he says.
Last summer’s Tweet/Garot intern, Brock Gerbyshak (pictured above), enjoyed his time on campus. “Being a college student, the location of being right on St. Norbert’s campus was ideal,” he says, “as it had the college feel [I was] used to, and provided me with a nice transition from a school life to a working life.” Gerbyshak also appreciated access to the college gym and weight room, and the lodging’s proximity to downtown De Pere. He liked his summer digs so much, in fact, that he mentioned it to a buddy who was interning for a local general contracting company; that firm ended up housing its intern at SNC, in Gerbyshak’s townhouse.
Rhodes anticipates contracting with the college to house a few more interns this summer. “Being able to offer housing along with an internship is definitely another selling point in attracting talent,” he says. And clearly it pays off. Gerbyshak is now a full-time Tweet/Garot employee.
For more information on summer housing options at St. Norbert College, contact Mike Peckham at 920-403-3360 or email@example.com.
Jan. 30, 2017