Students work in challenging paid internships during the day, and can choose from a wide range of cultural, social and civic engagements activities to fill evenings and weekends. Students enjoy the opportunity to live with peers from other participating schools while forming close ties with their own local alumnae/i networks.
All program participants (including those originally from Northeast Ohio) are required to live in the designated dormitory in order to experience the full value of the program. Housing is pre-arranged by the Summer on the Cuyahoga (SOTC) program and is provided at no cost to the students.
In 2013, it is required that all students participating in the SOTC program will live in Fenn Tower on the campus of Cleveland State University. Fenn is conveniently located on Euclid Avenue, just minutes from downtown Cleveland. Public transportation is available in front of the building, and the grocery, pharmacy and restaurants are a short drive or bus ride away. Students will enjoy a double room in a single-sex suite of four people. Each room is furnished with two beds, two dressers, two desks, two closets, overhead lighting, and a full bath. A privacy wall separates the living space. Each suite has a small kitchen with a full refrigerator, stovetop, and microwave, and a common room with a couch and chairs for small group gatherings. Every room is air conditioned and has wireless Internet access.
On the second floor of Fenn is a large game room with pool tables, a ping pong table, chess/checker tables, foosball games, and multiple televisions. Fenn also has a large laundry area, and fitness center in the lower level of the building. Students planning to cook in the dormitory should provide their own dishes and cooking utensils. A full oven is available in the sixth floor common area. Parking is available near the dorm for a fee.
Students will be issued CSU ID cards and will have access to University libraries, and for a small fee, the recreation center.
The internships are the core of the summer experience in Cleveland, and students are expected to be responsible and professional employees. Internship experiences are increasingly important in the post-college job search overall, and it is important to note that many program participants have converted their SOTC internships into full-time job opportunities in Cleveland.
Staff and alumni volunteers organize a series of events to enhance the students' Cleveland experience. Events are designed to reflect student interest and include meetings with civic leaders, cultural, social, and community service offerings, as well as career explorations with young professionals and alumni. The events are planned for evenings and weekends. While some events are mandatory and require intern participation, most are optional. It is expected that each intern will attend at least ten optional events over the course of the summer.
Each intern will be partnered with an adult alumni mentor for the summer. The intent is that the mentor be a resource to the student regarding life after college (balancing work, family and volunteer commitments) and life in Cleveland. Since the mentor is an alum of the student’s school, we have found that the relationship often continues beyond the summer experience, thereby keeping the student connected to Cleveland news and opportunities and the alum connected to current life at campus.
Some events will be arranged for the students and mentors together, but some mentors coordinate more frequent interaction, like a weekly lunch.