East Boston Central Catholic School alumni speak at the Catholic Schools Foundation’s 34th Annual Gala


Boston, MA – The Catholic Schools Foundation (CSF) held its 34th Annual Building Minds Scholarship Fund Gala on Thursday 11th April 2024 at the Boston Marriott Copley Place.

Nearly 1,000 CSF supporters gathered to honor Rick Henken, President and CEO of the Schochet Companies, and to raise scholarship funds for in-need students. The event, chaired by CSF Trustee Renee Minogue and her husband Mike Minogue, President & CEO of Minogue Consulting, LLC, and Retired Chairman, President, and CEO of Abiomed, raised over $5.6M in scholarship support for students.

The night’s Master of Ceremonies was Ben Simmoneau, anchor at WCVB Channel 5. Gov. Maura Healey stopped by to recognize Rick Henken and spoke about the importance of providing educational opportunities for low-income and first-generation students.

Mariana Hincapie, a senior at Malden Catholic High School, shared how the Building Minds Scholarship Fund changed her life. Mariana received a number of college acceptance letters which include Babson College, Stonehill, Bentley, Providence, Suffolk University, and Holy Cross. She is looking forward to her upcoming graduation and taking the next steps in her educational journey when she will become the first in her family to attend college.

Mariana Hincapie, East Boston Central Catholic School, East Boston (Class of 2020) Courtesy of CSF.

“Thanks to the Catholic Schools Foundation, here I am, a graduate from East Boston Central Catholic, soon to graduate from Malden Catholic, and become the first in my family to go to college. If not for the commitment of my parents, the support of the Catholic Schools Foundation, and all of you, this would not have been possible. Thank you!”

CSF Scholar Alumna Shadi Lopez spoke about her experiences during her time at Catholic school and the life-changing opportunities she received. Shadi now works as a Spanish teacher at Malden Catholic High School, a CSF supported school, and is witnessing firsthand how brighter futures are being created for her students.

Shadi Lopez, East Boston Central Catholic School, East Boston (Class of 2015) Courtesy of CSF.

Peter Lynch presented the Carolyn and Peter Lynch Award to Rick Henken for supporting and providing in-need students with the gift of Catholic education for over twenty years.

Rick Henken, Gala Honoree, stated:

What we do here and in our schools matters. When you enter one of our schools you can’t help but feel the love, the kindness, and the compassion that permeates.

Delivered with your support through our teachers and principals, who are educating the next generation with the fundamentals as well as with the values they will need to be good, active, and engaged citizens. I love these kids.”

The event highlighted the impact of the Building Minds Scholarship Fund, which provides scholarships to nearly 4,000 students each year. CSF scholars have a 100% graduation rate and a 98% college matriculation rate. Through these life-changing opportunities, these scholars are giving back to their communities and creating brighter futures for themselves and their families.

The event was made possible by CSF’s generous supporters, such as video sponsor, Putnam Investments, a Franklin Templeton Company, media sponsor, WCVB Channel 5, and the gala attendees, who are committed to changing lives and creating brighter futures for the most in-need students across Greater Boston.

The CSF would like to thank all gala attendees, supporters, and partners for their contributions to the Building Minds Scholarship Fund and invites everyone to join in its mission to enrich the lives of in-need students through access to a high-quality Catholic education.

About the Building Minds Scholarship Fund

The Building Minds Scholarship Fund is a signature program of the Catholic Schools Foundation, providing scholarships to students from various religions and backgrounds who would not otherwise be able to attend a Catholic school in the Archdiocese of Boston. 68% of CSF scholars come from single-parent households, 77% are non-white, and the medium family income for a family of four among our scholars is just $48,120*.

Read more about the Bright Minds Scholarship Fund at The Pilot.

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