The Foundation awards more than 300,000 scholarships to students from the region
SOUTHINGTON – Funds from individual donors have enabled the Community Foundation of Greater New Britain to give more money than ever to students in the region seeking graduate scholarships.
“I think it’s amazing, especially with some of the new funds we’ve created that give out substantial awards,” said Kimberly Duncan, communications and donor relations manager for the foundation.
The foundation, established in 1941, awarded $ 302,710 in scholarships this year, the first time it has distributed more than $ 300,000 in a year.
New scholarship funds created by individual donors in Southington, Berlin, New Britain and Plainville – along with favorable market conditions – have produced more money than ever to be distributed among 73 students, Duncan said.
Many recipients sent letters to thank the foundation and its patrons.
“They send thank-you notes that are so heartwarming and they realize how much it’s going to help them in their careers and their future,” Duncan said.
As a valedictorian at Southington High School, Gabe LeBlanc received the Arthur T. Blumer MD Merit Scholarship. He plans to go to Harvard University.
Eight of the foundation’s scholarship students are from Southington, four from Plainville and 13 from Berlin.
“There has been so much stress and uncertainty and college just adds to it,” said LeBlanc. “There have been courses and things to buy and the process of moving, so the scholarship helps alleviate that stress… and focus on what really matters, like exploring career areas.”
The scholarship funds are a reflection of those who have passed the collegiate process and want to “help the next generation move forward and achieve what they have accomplished,” said LeBlanc.
“For me personally, I guess there has been so much to consider about the future, so for me it means a lot that there are adults in our community… who are dedicated to our youth and want to do a difference, ”he said.
The funds come from a range of donors, Duncan said.
“Sometimes these are people who have received substantial scholarships in their lifetime and they want to reciprocate and give back to another student… and create a chain of donations,” he said.
The number of scholarships the foundation was able to award was in line with previous years, but the amounts were larger, Duncan said.
They were also able to allocate 10 scholarships – double the usual number – as part of the foundation’s Graduation Completion Fund pilot program, which supports final-year college students at Central Connecticut State University.
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