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FLEET BANK 'MAKES A DIFFERENCE' FOR NEW HAMPSHIRE VOC-TECH SCHOOL

 FLEET BANK 'MAKES A DIFFERENCE' FOR NEW HAMPSHIRE VOC-TECH SCHOOL
 HUDSON, N.H., Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- Fleet Bank of New Hampshire today formally opens a unique branch within the state's first and only self-sustaining regional vocational technical high school.
 "This partnership fulfills Fleet's corporatewide mission to provide educational opportunities for the youth in our community," said Dean T. Holt, president and CEO of Fleet Bank of New Hampshire, who was on hand for opening day. "This relationship falls under our 'Fleet Youth Initiative' umbrella of programs."
 After years of lobbying, Wilbur "Webb" Palmer, director of the Regional Vocational Technical Education Center at Alvirne, got the go- ahead to find businesses willing to create unique public/private partnerships. At a local Rotary Club meeting last December, Palmer approached Fleet's Hudson branch manager Sharon LaBranche with a proposition: Would Fleet "create" a branch within the proposed voc-tech school so students could learn banking hands on?
 Working closely with Marsha Miller, Fleet's administrative service manager who ran interference to unravel a tangle of administrative and legal arrangements necessary to form the partnership with the school, the team established the Fleet branch in time for the opening of school this fall.
 Located on a 214-acre campus, the school resembles a small town in that vocational teaching takes place within the actual workings of an array of small businesses whose primary customers are students and faculty. In addition to the Fleet branch, there is a campus store, a veterinary office, an ambulatory health care unit, an 80-seat restaurant, and two day-care centers for either the elderly or children. In all, 11 state-of-the-art programs mix practical and classroom learning under a single roof.
 The branch will be operated by 16 intern-tellers and intern customer service representatives who just completed six weeks of basic banking classes. They now will run the bank under the watchful eyes of two Fleet employees, a head teller and a management trainee. Serving the school community with full banking services each weekday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., the branch also is available as an off-site center for Fleet to train or re-train employees for new positions in other branches.
 "We at Fleet are extremely excited to support the unique educational mission of Alvirne because it further supports our ongoing commitment to youth," said CEO Holt. "We are the first bank in New Hampshire to form this type of partnership with a school and hope it serves as a model for other vocational-technical educational programs throughout the state."
 Meantime, Palmer says he is impressed with the corporate commitment Fleet has shown to help prepare students for "real" jobs by providing practical training and life skills.
 "It has always been a dream of mine to provide a full-service vocational school to area students," Palmer said. "In my opinion, Fleet Bank has already made a difference."
 Fleet Bank/NH is a subsidiary of Fleet Financial Group, a $45-billion diversified national financial services company listed on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE: FLT) with approximately 1,300 offices nationwide. Its lines of business include commercial and consumer banking, mortgage banking, consumer finance, asset-based lending, investment management and student loan processing.
 Launched in 1990 by Fleet National Bank in Providence, R.I., the "Fleet Youth Initiative" program serves as a comprehensive, corporatewide umbrella for all events, sponsorships and issue-oriented projects for young people throughout New England to stretch their minds, skills and imaginations.
 -0- 10/19/92
 /CONTACT: Melissa Sullivan, 603-594-5059, or Brian E. Wood, 207-874-5107, of Fleet Bank/
 (FLT) CO: Fleet Bank of New Hampshire ST: New Hampshire IN: FIN SU:


CN -- NE008 -- 1399 10/19/92 09:15 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 19, 1992
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