At the heart of Rochester Brainery is the want to promote local businesses, local talent, local smarties and spread the word about our creative city. So when Nazareth College graduate student Olivia Kelly contacted us in January about working with the College to provide low-cost classes to Nazareth students, we jumped at the chance! What a perfect opportunity for students to make connections to our community they may not have a chance to make otherwise, we thought.
Here's how it works...
Each month, the Student Affairs Administration at Nazareth College will be choosing four of our classes and offering up to five seats per class to their students for only $5. The best part? That $5 that students will pay will go directly to Golisano Children's Hospital, giving students a reason to give back to the community while learning something new themselves! There is even free transportation services available to get too and from!
Check out our interview with Olivia Kelly to learn more about the program, its roots, and her (since she's awesome!).
What is your background?
I just graduated in May from SUNY Geneseo with a degree in Mathematics. While I was there I realized how much I love the world of High Education from my experiences in Student Government and Greek Life and realized I could actually work with college students outside the classroom as a career! Right now, at Nazareth, I work for Residential Life as a Graduate Resident Assistant and in Student Activities, which is where I've been working on the partnership with Rochester Brainery.
Why did you choose Nazareth?
I chose Nazareth because I heard really good things about the Masters program (Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration) I was applying to, and I really just wasn't ready for a big move. Nazareth has a really great reputation and I knew I'd be getting a quality education.
What do you like about Rochester?
I LOVE Rochester! From growing up in Irondequoit, I've had a lot of opportunities to take advantage of all the city has to offer. I love going to Red Wings and Amerks games, popping into one of the many amazing museums, hitting up the public market, or grabbing a cup of coffee with friends at Java's. There is always something to do!
Do you plan to stay here after College?
I really do love Rochester, and I've had a really wonderful 20+ years here. But I think I'm ready for a new adventure.
Before your partnership with Rochester Brainery there was "Try It You Might Like It" on campus. When did “Try It You Might Like It” start and what is it all about?
“Try It You Might Like It” started in January 2014. The goal was to get students to try something they might not normally be interested in, with the opportunity to continue the new skill they learned. These classes were taught by Nazareth students, faculty, or staff. The hope was also that students would get learn more about individuals within the Nazareth community.
How many people participated?
Participation has depended on the type of event. When we've held stand alone events we get anywhere from ten to twenty-five participants. For the events that we have with a campus-wide program we've had upward of a hundred people.
What kind of classes did you have with "Try It You Might Like It"?
We offered a lot of really cool classes like Salsa Dancing, Sushi Making, Intro to Yo-Yo, Beginners PiYo, and Knitting!
What are some goals of the partnership with Rochester Brainery?
We are really hoping to provide our students with opportunities to attend a wide variety workshops that we just can't do here at Naz! When we found the Rochester Brainery we knew sending our students over would be an amazing opportunity.
What are the benefits to Nazareth students?
This partnership benefits Nazareth students because they have the opportunity to attend classes at the Brainery at a lower cost. They will also get further exposure to the Rochester community and get excited about getting involved in the city they live in!
What classes were attended at the Brainery in February?
This February students attended a Terrarium class as well as an American Sign Language Class. Both groups of students had a really great time and are really excited for more opportunities.
What was the student feedback after the February classes?
Students really loved the classes they went to this February. They were so excited to have an opportunity to get off campus and learn something new at a relatively low cost. Everyone was really eager to hear about upcoming workshops!
What classes will you be offering Nazareth students in March?
The first class on the calendar is a Pilates class at Naz. And when we return to campus after spring break we are really looking forward to sending students over for "Detox Your Home and Body," "Screen Printing-Stationary Edition," and "Indian Cooking."
What could some of the benefits to the Rochester community be?
I think both students and community members will benefit from interacting with each other. Nazareth students care deeply for their community and are passionate about helping others, it's infectious. I also think that a positive impact for students and the Rochester community is just more exposure to each other and the ability to share creative ideas!
How valuable is donating to charity for this program?
Nazareth College prides itself on community service and giving back. Having students make a donation to Golisano Children's Hospital instead of paying the full cost was a natural choice. We picked Golisano Children's Hospital because Nazareth College and St John Fisher College's basketball teams are currently playing each other in a few friendly rivalry games in an effort to raise money for the Golisano Children's Hospital as well.
How is the word getting out to the students?
Right now we are distributing calendars to students, posting on the "Nazareth Student Activities" Facebook page, sending out emails prior to each workshop, and working on another paper ad campaign. We're still trying to figure out the best way to let students know about the workshops and the partnership.