SNC’s Center for Business and Economic Analysis called a win-win for students and the community


By Rick Cohler

DE PERE — When officials at the Green Bay Botanical Garden began planning a large garden with a performance amphitheater, planners turned to St. Norbert College (SNC) to determine its economic impact on Greater Green Bay.

The garden’s chief executive, Susan Garot, said the large garden increased its economic impact from $2 million to $5 million, and credits the analysis and advice provided by the Center for Business and Economic Analysis ( CBEA) from the college for helping to make this dream come true.

“It’s an economic exercise to create your impact,” Garot said. “Once we know what components go into creating our economic impact, we can update it every year because we know where to find the data. It helps our donors to know that they are making a wise investment.

She said the addition of a new kindergarten is expected to increase the economic contribution to nearly $10 million.

Dr. Sandra Odorzynski, SNC Professor of Economics and former SNC student Nicole Kozlovsky, conducted the garden’s impact study and, as is often said, the rest is history.

Business and Economic Analysis Center

The CBEA was officially created in 2014 by economics professor Dr Marc Schaffer.

He said he provides a variety of services to businesses, nonprofits and government entities, including: economic impact studies, leading indicator analysis, market research and site selection analysis, modeling and statistical forecasting, data analysis, data visualization and automation, economics comments and speaking engagements.

Through the CBEA, Schneider School faculty, staff, and students work hand-in-hand with leaders in local business and nonprofit communities, providing information, solving problems, networking and collaborating.

And while community customers benefit from the CBEA, Schaffer said its primary goal is to teach students how to be successful.

“It’s about students and real-world applications,” he said. “Classroom instruction is important, but a student sitting with a business executive showing off their skills is something that can’t be replicated in the classroom.”

For example, Schaffer said a student was participating in a statewide economics webinar and the governor joined the conference to listen.

“Just imagine you’re a student and the governor listens to your presentation,” he said.

Amy Kundinger came on board as director of corporate engagement in 2015, and while her position typically focuses on scholarships and funding from a business perspective for the college, she said she now saw his work as something much larger.

“Working with Marc has taken my job to the next level,” Kundinger said.

She said the experiential learning that CBEA offers students is a differentiator.

“You can learn about these economic principles in real time and pass them on to the business world,” she said. “I’m trying to think about how to engage the company (the community) to invest more in these opportunities to provide more students with these types of experiences, so they’re ready to take their companies to the next iteration of what happens to keep you viable.

Kundinger said CBEA is a win-win solution from a student experience perspective, the community partner (corporate, nonprofit, local government) gets quality research and analysis, and St. Norbert is able to support the community.

Schaffer said it’s a win-win – local and regional businesses get data and analytics they can use to improve their business, while students get great experience working and presenting to business leaders. .

State of the Economy Event

One such opportunity is the AECB’s State of the Economy events.

What started as a boutique-style event held for a small audience of about 20 people, Kundinger said, has now grown into an opportunity for business and community leaders to learn about the current state of the industry. global and national economy among students.

The event is designed both for professionals in the region looking for more economic data before executing their business planning and for people who are generally interested in the state of the economy of the country.

student success

Schaffer said the business connections students make through the CBEA can and have provided future career opportunities.

Peyton Jack is a recent SNC graduate who turned his job with the CBEA into a job.

“It was a project for Breakthrough (a Green Bay company specializing in innovative transportation technology and market insight), which led to an internship and then a job,” Jack said. “Now I work for them full time and I love it.”

Andy Martinelli, alumnus of SNC, also works for Breakthrough as director of data science.

“What we rely on from the CBEA is their expertise in statistical modeling, so they can help us leverage and leverage the techniques that we have,” Martinelli said. “It provides Breakthrough with another channel for skill sets that we don’t consider prevalent here, and gives us a pipeline to potential new hires. There are not many programs that can do what CBEA faculty and students can do.

Schaffer and Kundinger said they see a busy and promising future for the AECB.

Schaffer said the CBEA has an ongoing relationship with a major Chicago company that publishes annual reports and think-tanks for its vast national market.

He said SNC students wrote the accompanying articles on the company’s website.

Schaffer said he also looks forward to more collaborations with communities in the region and support for local decision makers as they make the decisions to ensure northeast Wisconsin remains a key part of the economy. ‘State.


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