Scott Cowlin
Vice President and Branch Manager
Pittsfield Cooperative Bank

Meet Scott Cowlin

“It made our lives easier, and it is a great opportunity for the intern as well as Pittsfield Cooperative Bank.”

This past summer, Pittsfield Cooperative Bank partnered with Lever’s Berkshire Interns program for the first time.

“It made our lives easier, and it is a great opportunity for the intern as well as Pittsfield Cooperative Bank,” said Vice President and Branch Manager Scott Cowlin, who oversees the intern program.

Before partnering with BI, Cowlin said the bank wasn’t doing much active outreach—they would always hire summer interns, but those interns usually came from a more limited network. BI markets internships to 150 colleges, and employers usually get at least 14 resumes per listing to look through—a much bigger talent pool.

“BI guided us through it,” he said. “They take care of the process and we get summer help, which offers more efficiency with our staff.”

The interns “get an opportunity to put their toe in the water, and figure out whether or not this is a career they want to pursue,” Cowlin said. They learn the ins and outs of banking while serving as tellers, brushing up on soft skills and customer relations. “The  teller position is the face of the organization.  They create the initial welcoming atmosphere for our customers. They are one of the most important pieces of the pie for creating a great customer experience,” Cowlin said. Speedy, friendly customer service is part of Pittsfield Co-op’s brand, and having interns as team members in its various branches also gives additional coverage to accommodate long-term staff vacations. “The interns play a pivotal role in allowing our permanent staff to have that work-life balance,” he said. Cowlin grew up in the Berkshires, and started his career as a teller at Berkshire Bank, working his way up to VP and branch manager at Pittsfield Co-op. He and his wife, Nicole, have raised three daughters here; he said programs like BI are great ways to build affinity for the area with a younger population. Berkshire County needs to retain that population—the county’s population has declined steadily in almost every Census since 1974. “That’s the name of the game,” Cowlin said. “It’s a challenge.” Cowlin said he’d definitely recommend BI to other employers in the region. “The interns we’ve hired have been very good. They have good communication and people skills, which work well even if they’re coming into a new field,” he said.