New UniBank partnership supports LEI program for adult financial literacy

October 18, 2023
By: Deborah Alvarez O'Neil

A longstanding Latino Education Institute initiative to increase financial literacy and home ownership in Worcester’s Latino community is being strengthened with a new $5,000 sponsorship from UniBank.

The UniBank sponsorship will focus on weaving throughout the year financial education/literacy and homeownership workshops into LEI’s English as a Second Language program for adults, known as Club Educación or Club E. The goal is to empower adult students with the knowledge and skills to make informed financial decisions and achieve home ownership.

“The UniBank-LEI partnership will positively impact the lives of our Hispanic adult students and the local community as a whole,” said LEI Director Maria Juncos-Gautier. “We are profoundly appreciative of UniBank’s unwavering commitment to supporting the Spanish-speaking communities in Worcester.”

Club E has been running successfully for more than 20 years and welcomes some 300 students annually to the Worcester State campus. The program offers 25-week sessions from September to December and 13-week sessions from March to June. Designed for adults, Club E focuses on improving English communication skills through reading, grammar, conversational lessons, and interactive activities. Students take an English proficiency assessment with four different ESL levels to determine their appropriate class level.

While the primary focus of Club E is enhancing English fluency, it also offers secondary benefits by developing soft skills and self-confidence. The program creates meaningful connections by collaborating with local partners and organizations like UniBank, offering guest speakers on various topics, career fairs for networking with hiring agencies, and public speaking workshops.

These real-life experiences further support the learners’ overall well-being and economic progress. “UniBank is an ideal corporate partner for Club E,” said Juncos-Gautier, “as it embodies the qualities sought as a partner for the Latino community we serve through this program.”

Top photo: UniBank presented Worcester State’s Latino Education Institute with a $5,000 sponsorship on Oct. 13. From left are Louise Taylor, director of gift planning and scholarships, President Barry Maloney, LEI Director Maria Juncos-Gautier, UniBank AVP Mortgage Consultant Tania Medina, LEI Club E Program Manager Steve Favulli, and UniBank CRA Officer Matt Wally. (Photo by Maureen Stokes)

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