UConn Hartford Promise Scholarship is her stepping stone to college
Mayra Vasquez, 18, says the UConn Hartford Promise program has motivated her to become a better student and given her the confidence to tackle just about any goal.
Vasquez, whose parents are immigrants from Peru, says the program not only helped her figure out how to prepare and apply for college, but provided a generous scholarship that has allowed her to make that dream come true.
“The Hartford Promise Scholarship actually motivated me to get my grades up, go to school every day, and really just become an overall well-rounded student in high school,” she said. “I really needed it to break out of the cycle because I am a first-generation student. It has really just impacted me a lot. I’m more determined, more passionate about the things I do now because I have the experience of going after something that I really, really want.”
Vasquez, who grew up in Hartford and graduated from Classical Magnet School, just finished her first year at UConn’s Hartford campus. She has not decided on a major yet but has discovered a passion for learning and hopes to go on to graduate school.
She is one of more than 150 Hartford students who attend UConn through the UConn Hartford Promise program scholarship. The program is an integrated college success model that provides a scholarship, continuing support, and resources to help them navigate through college. The UConn Hartford Promise Scholarship provides a full ride to Hartford scholarships, picking up all costs after other scholarships.
“The financial support provided by this fund has made the difference between many of these students being able to continue in college or having to drop out. Its value cannot be overstated,” said Richard Sugarman, President of Hartford Promise.
Hartford Promise currently supports a total of 460 scholars from Hartford who go to 70 different colleges across the country. About 30 percent of them go to UConn, either in Hartford or Storrs. About 90 percent are students of color; 75 percent are from low-income backgrounds; and 70 percent are first-generation students.
“These students have overcome a life of challenges and are determined that they’re going to succeed in college no matter what,” Sugarman said. “These are amazing, heroic students who have shown the ability to overcome everything thrown at them. This really gives them an extra helping hand when they really needed it.”
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