The Community Foundation of Eastern Connecticut awarded $963,649 in scholarships to 307 students from across the region. Recipients come from 32 of the 42 towns in the foundation’s service area. Scholarships are a critical part of the foundation’s “cradle to career” commitment to supporting youth.
Working with local nonprofits and school systems to identify the needs in each community, the foundation also supports other efforts for the region’s most vulnerable youth, including early childhood education, after-school programs, mentoring, college internships and financial resources beyond tuition assistance.
A key partner in the area of college readiness and completion is Higher Edge, a nonprofit that guides low-income and first-generation students through enrollment, retention, and graduation from college.
"This year, eight of our high school seniors and 18 of our current college students received scholarships from the Community Foundation. This financial support is a critical component in removing the barriers for them to achieve their educational goals,” stated Katie Hallisey, executive director of Higher Edge.
The Community Foundation’s scholarships are made possible through the generosity of donors who understand the value of opening doors for students and investing in the future. The donors have established 123 scholarship funds at the foundation, awarding nearly $8.8 million to more than 2,800 students since 1983. Some of this year's scholarship winners are:
Casey Adams of Mystic, in first photo, a graduate of Fitch High School majoring in landscaping management at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, is the inaugural recipient of the Jake T. Watson Memorial Scholarship.
Yamila Garcia of Ledyard, in second photo, a graduate of Three Rivers Community College studying computer science at the University of Connecticut, Storrs, is the inaugural recipient of the New London County STEM Equity Scholarship.
Lucero Blanco of Norwich, a 2020 Norwich Free Academy graduate attending Roger Williams University, where she is studying visual arts, is the inaugural recipient of the Diana Atwood Johnson Scholarship.