City of Hartford Provides $1 Million Grant for Hartford Promise Scholarship Program

City of Hartford Provides $1 Million Grant for Hartford Promise Scholarship Program

On Thursday, October 28, 2021, Mayor Luke Bronin announced a new partnership between the City of Hartford and Hartford Promise, providing a $1 million city grant to support additional college scholarships for Hartford Public School students.  Joined by Hartford Promise President Richard Sugarman, Superintendent Leslie Torres-Rodriguez, city leaders, and Hartford Promise graduates, the announcement highlighted an unprecedented public commitment to the Hartford Promise program, which has helped more than 750 Hartford Public School students attend college over the past seven years.

On Monday, the City Council approved the Mayor’s proposal to utilize $1 million of funds received back as surplus from the Board of Education’s FY2021 budget for this grant to Hartford Promise.  Hartford Promise provides $5,000 per student per year of college, and the Hartford Promise scholarships are matched by UConn, Goodwin College, St. Joseph’s and the University of Chicago.  The University of Hartford pays for room and board for its Hartford Promise scholars.

“Hartford Promise has helped hundreds of Hartford students enroll in college and stay in college, and we’re proud to be able to partner in this unprecedented way to help sustain and grow that work,” said Mayor Bronin. “Hartford Promise is just that — a promise to every Hartford Public School student that if they keep their grades up and have strong attendance, they’ll get a college scholarship, guaranteed.  For a number of years, my administration and the City Council have been committed to using any surplus dollars sent back by the Board of Education to reinvest in education, whether for school construction, future HPS operating costs, or vital partnerships like this one.  After so much disruption for students over the last year and a half of the pandemic, it’s more important than ever that we keep Hartford Promise strong and make sure that every Hartford student has the chance to make their college dreams a reality.”

“Hartford Promise was created 7 years ago to help Hartford students realize their college dreams by providing a $20,000 scholarship and valuable support services to every student who qualifies as a Promise Scholar,” said Hartford Promise President Richard Sugarman.  “The City of Hartford and Hartford Public Schools have been committed partners in this effort every step of the way.  We’ve had over 750 Promise Scholars attend more than 80 colleges across the country.  This significant investment will allow us to deepen and broaden our support of these students from high school, throughout their college journey, and into the Hartford workforce.  This will be transformative for 100’s of talented deserving young people and for the City of Hartford.  On behalf of every current and future Promise Scholar, we express deep gratitude for this support and for your belief in them.”

“The mission of Hartford Promise aligns with our mission at Hartford Public Schools, which is to provide all our students with the learning and support they need to succeed in school and in life,” said Superintendent Dr. Leslie Torres-Rodriguez.  “A key part of our Three Year Strategic Plan is to provide increased high school and post-secondary transition supports for our youth.  With these added supports from the City of Hartford for the Hartford Promise scholarship, we know that more Hartford students will graduate ready to transform our world.  This partnership and support are especially important now that our students are recovering from more than a year of learning through an historic pandemic.  They need all of us, the entire community in Hartford, to support their dreams and their futures.”

“As college costs continue to skyrocket, they’re becoming increasingly burdensome on our students,” said Hartford Councilman and Education Subcommittee Chair Nick Lebron.  “That’s why I’m so proud that we are partnering with Hartford Promise to expand the scholarship program.  Anything we can do to break down barriers and make college affordable, and decrease student loan burdens for our residents down the line, is a blessing.”

The proposed grant to Hartford Promise received a favorable recommendation from the City Council’s Budget Committee before being approved by City Council on October 25th.  Hartford Promise has had over 800 Promise Scholars in its first six years, including 146 students in 2021.  Students are eligible for the Promise Scholarship if they attend a Hartford public high school from 9th grade to 12th grade, live in Hartford, have an attendance record above 93% and have at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA.  These students receive up to $5,000 a year in college scholarships.

You can watch the exciting announcement below.