At a lunch meeting attended by representatives of the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce and of SUNY New Paltz, Kristin Backhaus, dean of the School of Business, talked to local business owners about the potential for collaboration between entrepreneurs and the School’s students and faculty.
“We’re interested in working to more effectively integrate our skills into the local business community,” Backhaus said. “We have faculty and students on our campus who may be able to assist small businesses that are trying to solve problems and develop plans for growth.”
Key to this expanded cooperation would be the creation of new internship opportunities with local businesses for School of Business students, which Backhaus said would offer mutual benefits for students and community members alike.
“Internships help early-career professionals develop organizational, management, communication and interpersonal skills,” Backhaus said. “But I want to emphasize that they can also be a pipeline for businesses to find and train future employees. Our students are eager to implement the skills they’ve learned in class in a way that can complement what’s going on in your business already.”
Backhaus is leading an effort to generate more internship opportunities for School of Business students, and her message was well-received by the local business owners who stand to benefit from such an expansion.
“I’m excited about the conversations I’ve had with Dean Backhaus, and how we’re working on integrating the business community of Chamber members with the College,” said Kathy Prizzia, executive director of the New Paltz Regional Chamber of Commerce. “Internship programs with college students continue to play a vital role in helping businesses grow and helping the students take their education to a deeper level.”
Backhaus also talked about trends at the College in recent years and some new developments at the School of Business, including growth in enrollment and the addition of new faculty. She discussed new programs and resources available to students and to the community, highlighting the recent unveiling of a new, publicly available CPA exam review course, as well as the purchase of a Bloomberg Terminal, which is being used to prepare students for careers in the financial services industry.
“There are a number of talented professors and students in the School of Business,” said Ed Burke, Jr. ’90 (Business Administration), chair of the School of Business Advisory Committee, “and they pose great opportunities for the New Paltz business community to foster new relationships and generate growth.”