Scholars' Alumni Association

Welcome to the Goodwin University Magnet School System (GUMSS) Scholars’ Alumni Association (SAA)! 

It is with scholar alumni assistance that we will further develop our association and build out our activities, which may include:

  • Mentor current GUMSS scholars;
  • Engage in volunteer opportunities;
  • Participate in networking activities, including the development of a GUMSS Scholars’ Alumni & Family Business Directory;
  • Attend alumni social events; 
  • Contribute to and attend personal and professional development sessions;
  • Take part in alumni community conversations, and
  • Share inspirational life stories through interviews and video vignettes posted on GUMSS social media and in our alumni newsletter.

If you are interested in sharing your contact information with us and being added to our mailing list, please fill out the below survey. 

Share your information with us!

For any questions or concerns, please contact Elizabeth Horton Sheff at or at (860) 727-6942.


Submit To Win

🎉 Announcement: Win A Gift Card to Black-Eyed Sally’s! 🎉

Calling all alumni! 🎓 We’re excited to announce the kick-off of our 2024 Summer Storyteller Project with a special drawing where you could win a gift card to Black-Eyed Sally’s Southern Kitchen & Bar! 🍔🍹
The gift card amount corresponds to your submission date: 

  • $100 Black-Eyed Sally’s gift card: Profiles and photo submitted by July 12th
  • $50 Black-Eyed Sally’s gift card: Profiles and photo submitted between July 13th - July 22nd 
  • $25  Black-Eyed Sally’s gift card: Profiles and photo submitted between July 23rd - July 31st

Drawings will occur on Friday, Aug. 2nd. Winners will be notified by email and posted on our CTRA website.
How to Enter:

  • Submit Your Profile -  Click on this link to submit your profile: Share your achievements, memories, and what you’ve been up to since graduation. 🌟
  • Upload Your Picture: Don’t forget to add a recent photo! We’d love to see your smiling face. 😊 
  • Please note: Submitting a photo signifies your consent for posting of such photo on GUMSS social media outlets, its website and in its alumni association newsletter.
  • Spread the word! Let your fellow alumni know about this exciting opportunity. 

🎁 Good luck! 🤞
Note: This drawing is open exclusively to Goodwin University Magnet School System alumni. Terms and conditions apply.


Meet your Alumni Specialist, Elizabeth Horton Sheff:

Beginning on August 22, 2023, Elizabeth Horton Sheff joined the Goodwin University Magnet School System (GUMSS) as the Alumni Specialist, responsible for nurturing and broadening the district’s relationships with their alumni. Horton Sheff is known throughout the state as the voice behind the Sheff v. O’Neill landmark case, which ensured that students like her son, Milo, have equal access to educational opportunities. 

“I have long wondered about the life outcomes of those students who attended a school in the Sheff region,” said Horton Sheff. “While I am rich in anecdotal evidence of the good accomplished, working with GUMSS will afford me the opportunity to transform that which I have heard into realities that I can see.” 

“With Horton Sheff joining our community, scholars and families will have an opportunity to engage with the person who championed quality integrated education that resulted in the creation of our magnet school system. It is not often that individuals have an opportunity to work with a nationally recognized education and community leader. We look forward to Horton Sheff capturing and sharing the stories of our alumni,” said Superintendent, Dr. Salvatore Menzo.
Horton Sheff comes to GUMSS with an extensive background in education and community relations. Most recently, Horton Sheff was the director for Community Renewal Team, Inc. in Hartford and previously was an Adjunct Professor of Sociology at Manchester Community College and Goodwin University. She has also served as a councilperson for the Hartford Court of Common Council and served as Minister for Just Peace Ministries for the United Church of Christ in Hartford, CT. 

“There is one thing, for certain, to which I can witness: Living one’s life answering the Call for social and racial justice will lead you to many places,” said Horton Sheff. “My dedication to such a pursuit has now brought me to GUMSS. I am grateful to GUMSS for this opportunity.

Horton Sheff holds a Bachelors of Science from Charter Oak State College and a Masters of Education, concentration in educational technology, from the University of Hartford. She is the recipient of a Doctorate of Humane Letters, also from the University of Hartford.


About Sheff v. O’Neill, 238 Conn.1, 678 A.2d 1267

On April 27, 1989, eighteen children, acting through their parents, filed a civil action in the Hartford Superior Court alleging that their fundamental right to education was being denied due to a lack of state resources being spent in areas with majority Black and Latino populations. The lead plaintiff was Milo Sheff, the son of Elizabeth Horton Sheff, and the state of Connecticut and Governor William A. O’Neill were listed as defendants. Following a decision made in favor of the defense, the action was appealed and sent to the Connecticut Supreme Court in 1996. On July 9, 1996, in a 4-3 decision, the court ruled in favor of Sheff plaintiffs concluding that the state was constitutionally obligated to provide children with equal educational opportunities and that a student’s access to public education should not be impaired by their racial and ethnic isolation. It also ruled that school districting based upon town and city boundary lines was unconstitutional because it contributed to large, concentrated areas of minority groups in Hartford. Many years passed before the Connecticut Supreme Court passed a settlement in January 2020 that would ensure more choice seats for students and more funding for extracurricular activities for students in Connecticut.