SBM Charitable Foundation Grants $30,000 to the Hartford Consortium for Higher Education

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Nonprofit to continue support for East Hartford High School, adds Manchester High School

HARTFORD, CT -- The Hartford Consortium for Higher Education (HCHE) received a $30,000 grant from the SBM Charitable Foundation to support students at East Hartford and Manchester High Schools through Career Beginnings, one of the Consortium’s signature programs, whose mission involves increasing college and career readiness for teenagers.

HCHE has long been an advocate for high school students, promoting the need for access to higher education and workforce readiness. Career Beginnings’ college advisors provide one-one-one counselling to high school juniors and seniors. The in-school services include: academic assessment, strategic college planning and a one year professional mentorship.

Dr. Martin Estey, Executive Director at the Hartford Consortium for Higher Education expressed his sincere thanks to the SBM Charitable Foundation adding, “This generous gift will be significant in helping us increase the number of students we reach and enhance our individualized counselling to students at East Hartford High School and Manchester High School in September 2015. It strengthens our promise to the students we serve.”

Executive Director of the SBM Charitable Foundation, Doreen H. Downham said, “We are excited about our continuing support of the Hartford Consortium for Higher Education and the important work they are doing.  The Career Beginnings Program fits well within our funding focus as we continue our commitment to the community and organizations like HCHE, to ensure pathways to higher education, and to enhance lives for students and families East of the Connecticut River.”

Since 1986, Career Beginnings has been connecting Hartford-area high school students, businesses, volunteers/mentors and parents. At the program’s inception, on average, 92% of our graduates enrolled in college directly out of high school. Since 2012, the average has increased to 97%. Career Beginnings supports students at eight Hartford high schools, A.I. Prince Tech, East Hartford High, Bloomfield High, and will begin services at Manchester High School in the fall of 2015.

The SBM Charitable Foundation, Inc. was established in 2000 by Connecticut Bancshares, Inc., the parent company of the former Saving Bank of Manchester. Its mission, perpetuating the vision of the former Bank, is committed to bettering the lives of those who live and work predominantly east of the River in Hartford, Tolland, and Windham Counties. Priority categories for funding include health, human services, education, housing and the arts. In 2014 the Foundation awarded a total of more than $2 million to area non-profits, while cumulatively since its founding the Foundation’s philanthropy has exceeded $21 million. The SBM Charitable Foundation is located at 935 Main Street in downtown Manchester.



Sue Bowen-Harris


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