Cassandra Andrusyszyn is riding the rails success at Lorain County Community College. The Lorain woman will graduate in May with an Associate of Applied Business – Entrepreneurship degree. She is currently interning with AMIDAC International and has been promised a job following her graduation.

“My internship is absolutely amazing and it truly changed my life,” Andrusyszyn, 24, said.

She first attended LCCC in 2006. Her lofty high school grade point average qualified her for free tuition with a Trustee Scholarship. She attended classes through 2008, but then had to withdrawal due to personal circumstances. She began working multiple jobs in order to make ends meet.

“I realized that is not what I wanted to do for the rest of my life; working three minimum wage jobs and going nowhere in life,” she said.

Andrusyszyn returned to LCCC with a plan to learn enough skills to successfully run her own business one day. Through the entrepreneurship program, she was placed in an internship with AMIDAC International, a local business that received start-up assistance from the Great Lakes Innovation and Development Enterprise, housed on the LCCC campus. The internship is located on familiar ground for Andrusyszyn, as the business utilizes office space inside the Entrepreneurship Innovation Center, also on the college’s campus.

AMIDAC is a manufacturer of products in superior welding and specialty lighting serving the electrical, mechanical, commercial and industrial, rail (high speed and traditional) and utility markets.

The internship gives Andrusyszyn the opportunity to apply what she’s learned in the LCCC classroom to real business situations.

“AMIDAC has me doing everything from marketing to HR to budgeting,” she said. “I worked on many projects, and because of my knowledge gained from LCCC, I was able to complete the projects accurately and efficiently.”

Andrusyszyn credits the many support services at LCCC for helping her return to college to complete her degree.

“There is an abundance of resources available on campus for students to utilize to help them graduate, such as childcare, Women's Link, tutoring, and the list goes on. I am thankful to have these resources available here and it definitely makes graduating a lot less difficult.”

Following graduation, Andrusyszyn has been promised a job at AMIDAC. The company recently acquired a new facility in Lorain that will be an Advanced Manufacturing facility, and she hopes to be an asset to the company as that space begins to take shape.

She eventually plans to own and operate her own business.

“Without LCCC, I could still be working with fast food and going nowhere in my life,” she said. “Education is important to move up in a company- even fast food.”