The University of Connecticut has received a $1 million gift from insurance company The Hartford to create The Hartford Scholars Program, which will provide financial support and mentoring for 50 UConn Hartford students.
Scholars will be comprised of two cohorts of students, with the first group of 25 first-year students selected this fall, and the second to be identified in 2022. Scholars must be Hartford residents with demonstrated financial need.
The Hartford’s support will cover the gap between a student’s existing financial aid package and the remaining tuition amount, allowing the student to attend UConn Hartford tuition-free. Scholars will also receive additional support for other expenses related to their education, such as fees, books, and transportation. The scholarship is renewable for four years for students who maintain good academic standing.
Freshman Cesar Carreno was selected to be part of the first cohorts of scholars. The youngest of three siblings, Carreno was born and raised in the south side of Hartford and graduated from Bulkeley High School. He intends to major in mechanical engineering.
“I am beyond thankful for this opportunity,” says Carreno. “Being named a scholar gives me a push to keep doing whatever I need to do to succeed.”
Carreno, who currently works as a pharmacist technician, says the scholarship will help ease the burden of paying for his education.
“The financial support means that I can rearrange my schedule so that I don’t have to work as much,” he says. “I can focus more on my education and have more time to study.”
“UConn Hartford is deeply grateful to The Hartford for its generous gift to establish The Hartford Scholars Program,” says UConn Hartford Campus Director Mark Overmyer-Velázquez. “This partnership—which will ultimately provide support and mentorship to 50 students who live in Hartford and attend the UConn Hartford campus—demonstrates The Hartford’s commitment to positive change in our city and an understanding of the importance of higher education in expanding opportunity for our community’s youth.”