Walmart Awards $478,000 Job-Training Grant to EASTCONN

EASTCONN Seeks Eastern Connecticut Businesses and Adults to Participate


Hampton, CT – EASTCONN’s Adult and Community Education division is pleased to announce that it has won a generous grant from Walmart that will fund a free job-skills training program for unemployed and under-employed adults who reside in eastern Connecticut.

 “Our Adult and Community Education staff are proud to be among the nine agencies nationwide who have been awarded one of these significant Walmart grants,” said EASTCONN Director of Adult and Community Education Programs, Richard Tariff. “Walmart’s generosity will allow us to deliver skills-building classes to eastern Connecticut adults who need a job, or who have a job, but are under-skilled or under-employed.”

The $478,000 Walmart grant will fund a new EASTCONN program called “EASTCONN’s Customer Service Academy: Upskilling for Professional Advancement,” which will provide free retail, computer skills, business and customer-service training for 150 unemployed or under-employed adults, with classes offered at American Job Centers in Willimantic, Danielson and Montville (Uncasville).

The grant will also enable EASTCONN to provide its Customer Service Academy participants at all three American Job Center sites with free childcare reimbursement, free transportation, free job search assistance and paid, post-graduation internships. 

The Willimantic and Danielson sites are co-located with EASTCONN’s Employment and Training division, while the Montville location has a dedicated adult education classroom.

In addition, EASTCONN is seeking eastern Connecticut businesses and agencies that are willing to hire graduates of the EASTCONN Customer Service Academy and/or to act as an internship location for Academy graduates. Interns will be paid by EASTCONN, through the grant.

Participating businesses may also enroll their current employees in the Academy; their employees may qualify for free childcare and free transportation to and from Academy classes. 

“One of the unusual and terrific aspects of this program is that there are no income eligibility requirements for participants,” said Suzanne Cimochowski, EASTCONN’s Assistant Director of Adult and Community Education Programs. “As a result, EASTCONN will be able to help more adults who simply need a job, or who want to improve their customer-service and workplace skills,” she said. 

Contact Suzanne Cimochowski at, or at 860-779-3770.

EASTCONN is a public, non-profit Regional Educational Service Center that has been serving the education needs of northeastern Connecticut’s schools and communities since 1980. Learn more at


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