With the high cost of tuition and the recent cutbacks to work-study and financial aid, there aren’t exactly many students at RPI who would consider themselves to be flush with cash. Making copious amounts of money after graduation may be the reason some people decided to come to RPI, but in the meantime, students will have to look for every possible way to save money—be it boiling eggs in the dishwasher (yes, that’s actually a thing) or buying off-brand Pop-Tarts.
Many students will be excited to hear about a great new program from the Troy Downtown Business Improvement District. While it has been quietly active for some time now, the program was officially launched earlier this month as the Student Incentive Program. The initiative offers discounts of up to 25 percent (although 10 percent seems to be more the norm) at participating local businesses just for showing an RPI ID. There are currently over 40 participating businesses in the downtown area, ranging from international cuisine to boutiques that specialize in local, hand-made clothing. Students may recognize some businesses, such as the calzone serving late night standby DP Dough and comic book store Aquilonia, while others may be new, like RPI alumni-run Foam Brain Games. However, they all have one thing in common: They are all locally owned businesses, and by purchasing at these locations, students will help out the local economy. More details can be found here: http://visittroyny.com/students/.
This is a great example of a mutually beneficial relationship between Troy and RPI. Troy gets more business from a transient market, and RPI students get to save some money. The Poly fully supports this initiative and hopes many will take advantage of it while studying at the Institute. By participating in this program, students will not only be saving money, but they will also be contributing to a more enjoyable college experience.
Let’s be honest; it’s nice to leave campus every now and then. And there is no more a convenient location to spend some time than places right at the bottom of the Approach. Too few take the time to actually explore Troy. The Poly hopes this program will go towards changing the current state of things.
For those who find they like the idea of getting to know more about Troy, we also endorse Troy Night Out. TNO takes place on the last Friday of every month, where Troy’s art galleries, stores, and restaurants come together to make the town a lively place. It officially runs from 5–9 pm, but many places will keep the atmosphere of the night going much later than that. More information can be found at http://troynightout.org/.