BankRI Grant to Breakthrough Providence Supports its “Students Teaching Students” Academic Program at the Wheeler School

PROVIDENCE, RICommitted to helping students achieve their dream of attending college and pursuing a career in a field they’re passionate about, Bank Rhode Island (BankRI) announced today it has awarded a $5,000 grant to Breakthrough Providence in support of a unique educational program that aims to do both. 

Breakthrough Providence, an educational initiative housed on The Wheeler School campus, is one of 33 affiliates of the Breakthrough Collaborative, a national organization that helps students prepare for college and careers and has been ranked as a Princeton Review Top 10 Internship. Through its comprehensive “Students Teaching Students” model of academic enrichment and teacher education, the program works to create pathways to college for middle school students in Providence Public Schools while encouraging high school and college students to pursue careers in education.

“It’s well documented that a student’s academic success by the 8th grade plays a significant role in the future of their education and ability to go on to college,” said Mark J. Meiklejohn, President and CEO of BankRI. “Breakthrough Providence is a program we’re proud to support; it’s a model of education that’s having tremendous impact on the lives of many students, both in the classroom and after graduation.”

The Breakthrough Providence initiative recruits students from every 6th grade classroom in public and elementary schools across Providence, serving low-income, and first-generation college-bound youth through four distinct components; Middle School Program, High School Program, Teacher Training and Alumni Engagement.

Through its range of programs, Breakthrough Providence works with rising middle school students for two years beginning the summer after 6th grade and through the completion of 8th grade to prepare them for the rigors of a college preparatory high school education. All participating students receive academic support across two school years, two intensive 6-week summer programs and afterschool and Saturday learning programs. High school students benefit from ongoing guidance during the college admissions process, as well as around course selection and internships.

With its Teacher Training initiative, a leadership development and pre-professional program for students ages 16 to 22, Breakthrough Providence hires 60 high school and college students throughout the course of a school year to serve as teachers and tutors.


About Bank Rhode Island

Bank Rhode Island, a wholly owned subsidiary of Brookline Bancorp, Inc. (NASDAQ:BRKL), is a full-service, FDIC-insured financial institution headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island.  The bank operates 19 branches and more than 60 ATMs throughout Providence, Kent and Washington Counties. For more information,

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