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student holding sing the chet dream big! competition
Region 15 Schools

Kitan Arole, a junior at Pomperaug High School, was a first-place winner in the Connecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET) Dream Big! Competition offered by Connecticut’s Office of the Treasurer (OTT). The competition gives Connecticut parents and guardians the opportunity to win money toward their child’s future education.

Kitan was one of five Connecticut students in grades 9-12 to be awarded first place and to receive an award of $7,500 for the essay she submitted to the competition. The CHET Dream Big! Competition is open to all Connecticut residents in grades Kindergarten to 12th grade and requires high school students to submit a short essay or video answering a question responding to the prompt of what they believe to be one of the biggest challenges facing students today and how they would help solve it. 

The Connecticut Higher Education Trust (CHET) direct-sold college savings plan was established in 1997 and has grown to more than $3.5 billion in assets and 132,000 accounts. Over $2.1 billion has been withdrawn from CHET accounts to help more than 57,000 students pay for college expenses. The State of Connecticut offers CHET to help families save for future higher education costs. Funds deposited into a CHET account have tax advantages and can be used at accredited colleges and universities across the country, including vocational and technical schools, and some colleges abroad. Connecticut residents are allowed to deduct 529 contributions from their state income taxes – up to $5,000 for an individual or up to $10,000 for a married couple filing jointly. Investment earnings are exempt from state and federal taxes if used for qualified educational expenses. For more information, visit Find us on Facebook (, follow us on Twitter (@CHET529) or on Instagram (@CHET529).