Cache Chamber of Commerce Economic Impact Award

For nine weeks during summer, Summer Citizens draws people to USU from all over the sun belt – Texas, Arizona, California – for a chance to take in the sites of Northern Utah and learn about anything and everything from university professors and industry professionals; from smartphone basics to aqua fitness; they'll also branch out and eat at local restraints, attend the performing arts, engage in community events, participate in recreational activities, shop in our local stores, receive health care services, rent apartments, pay utilities, and learn and stay active through continuing education opportunities at Utah State University.

According to the Cache Chamber of Commerce, Summer Citizens brings in $4 million in just three short months, considering there's an estimated 500 couples who come each year, contributing about $2,500 per month.

"It's a great honor" to receive the award from the Chamber, said Leila Neilson, executive director of Summer Citizens. "We have really grown the program over the last six or seven years and I think that growth speaks to why the Chamber felt it was appropriate to give us that award."

The Chamber award comes as Summer Citizens, founded in 1976, celebrates its 40th anniversary.

"It's a huge accomplishment for any program," said Linda D'Addabbo, Summer Citizens coordinator. "That means it's valued, it's appreciated, it's viable."

Neilson said Summer Citizens is about "lifelong learning," noting the 53 programs taught between June and August.