UConn Stamford and Synchrony Establish Digital Technology Center to Accelerate Innovation in Digital and Mobile

Public-Private Partnership Equips Students with Experiential Learning, Helps Grow Local Talent Pipeline

Synchrony Commits $1 Million to UConn Initiative to Help Low-Income Students Access Free Tuition

STAMFORD, Conn., Dec. 16, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Today, Synchrony (NYSE: SYF) and the University of Connecticut (UConn) expanded their four-year partnership to help advance technology education and digital expertise for next generation leaders. The organizations celebrated the opening of the Digital Technology Center (DTC) at the UConn Stamford campus and also announced the first $1 million gift to UConn's Connecticut Commitment, an initiative that provides free tuition to low-income, in-state undergraduate students.

On Monday, December 16th, Synchrony CEO Margaret Keane and UConn President Tom Katsouleas spoke with a UConn student on his tech project at UConn Stamford’s new Digital Technology Center (DTC). The DTC is part of Synchrony and UConn’s expanded partnership to help prepare students for tech careers. Synchrony also announced a $1 million gift to UConn’s Connecticut Commitment program that provides free tuition to low-income students. From left to right: UConn President Tom Katsouleas, Synchrony CEO Margaret Keane, and UConn student and DTC intern Charlie Ira (Photo credit: Synchrony)

The new DTC is focused on research, education and innovation around digital and mobile capabilities. Together, the organizations will help speed Synchrony's solutions to market while strengthening and expanding skills in coding, software engineering, and user experience (UX) design through education and internships. 

At an event held at the DTC today, UConn students demonstrated projects in voice technology, coding for apps and robotic process automation. Students in the program work with developers, UX designers and software engineers from Synchrony's Innovation Station in Stamford where cross-functional teams test new ideas and solve client problems.

"We're committed to Connecticut's economic success and ensuring that local students from diverse backgrounds are equipped with the experiences and skills needed to tackle tomorrow's challenges," said Margaret Keane, CEO of Synchrony. "Our expanded partnership with UConn will help close the skills gap and prepare students for careers in technology throughout the state."

"Synchrony's leading gift to support the Connecticut Commitment program is a generous investment in our students and our state's future, helping talented low-income students who might have otherwise believed that UConn was out of reach for them," said UConn President Thomas Katsouleas. "And the Digital Technology Center is another way that Synchrony has become such a valuable partner. Synchrony and the new Center are supporting our students not only financially but with time and expertise, connecting students' classroom knowledge to real world needs in data analytics, AI and their applications." 

The DTC builds upon Synchrony's strong partnership with UConn. In 2016, UConn's School of Engineering and Synchrony launched the Synchrony Cybersecurity Center located at the school's Storrs campus, which promotes cutting edge research in cybersecurity, one of the fastest-growing technology fields. Through the partnership, Synchrony provided an endowment for a Synchrony Chair in Cybersecurity to lead cybersecurity education at UConn and help develop a strong pipeline of information security talent.

Synchrony's donation of $1 million to UConn's Connecticut Commitment helps cover tuition costs to low-income undergraduate students for up to four years. This program applies to Connecticut residents whose families have household incomes of $50,000 or less, including many first-generation and underrepresented college students. In addition, Synchrony will work with UConn to pair students with business mentors.

The gift was made by the Synchrony Foundation through its Families that Work program. Synchrony is committed to supporting non-profits that are making a difference in the lives of low- and moderate-income working families.

About Synchrony
Synchrony Financial (NYSE: SYF) is a premier consumer financial services company delivering customized financing programs across key industries including retail, health, auto, travel and home, along with award-winning consumer banking products. With more than $140 billion in sales financed and 80.3 million active accounts, Synchrony Financial brings deep industry expertise, actionable data insights, innovative solutions and differentiated digital experiences to improve the success of every business we serve and the quality of each life we touch. More information can be found at www.synchronyfinancial.com and through Twitter: @Synchrony.

About UConn
The University of Connecticut is one of the nation's leading public research universities. As the state's flagship university, UConn is a leader in Connecticut workforce development, preparing its students with the latest knowledge, skills, technologies and industry standards to allow them to succeed in today's highly competitive global marketplace.

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