GE Continues Support of Minority Students Through GE Foundation Scholars Program

News Story: October 1, 2011

Sacred Heart University has received $150,000 from the GE Foundation for the 2011-12 academic year. The grant supports 18 undergraduate minority students through tuition relief and retention services designed to broaden the students’ experience beyond the classroom.

This year marks the 18th year of the at Sacred Heart University. The program provides financial aid for qualified minority students with a demonstrated interest in math, science, information technology or quantitative business disciplines. The students must be full-time and maintain a 3.0 GPA to remain eligible for the program.

“The GE Foundation proudly supports SHU and its mission to provide a quality education,” said Bob Corcoran, President of the GE Foundation. “Our continued scholarship support will empower another class of leaders to follow their passion while developing knowledge for future success.”

Participants in the program also are required to perform 20 hours of community service each semester, said Virginia Stephens, director of the GE Foundation Scholars Program. Some examples of the volunteer work done by the  students includes serving as  tutors and mentors in the Bridgeport Public Schools and becoming conversation partners for ESOL students.

“Students need financial help, but they also need other kinds of support,” Stephens said of the retention and enrichment services provided by the program. Participants are required to attend monthly workshops where outside consultants or faculty members cover such topics as time management, interview skills, resume writing, etc. In addition, the group attends social events together, such as the opera or a Broadway show. One upcoming event will be an “etiquette” dinner where students will receive tips for those times when they have an interview or business meeting over dinner.

Stephens said the program has been very successful over the years. “Eighty percent of the students in this program have graduated on time or early, and most have either continued their education or gone on to have great careers,” she said. “We are extremely grateful to the GE Foundation for its continued support of Sacred Heart and our students.”

The GE Foundation, the philanthropic organization of the General Electric Company, works to strengthen educational quality for disadvantaged youth globally; and supports GE employee and retiree giving and involvement in GE communities around the world. For information, visit www.gefoundation.com.