Rockwell Automation Commits $12M to FIRST Program
Jane Alexander | November 15, 2016
Rockwell Automation has never shied away from putting its muscle and money where its mouth is when it comes to developing the workforce of the future. The latest example is the company’s announcement of a $12M, four-year commitment to FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology).
Highlighted at the recent Automation Fair event in Atlanta, this new $12M investment amounts to one of the largest gifts ever for FIRST, which focuses on boosting young people’s interest and participation in science and technology.
According to Donald E. Bossi, president of FIRST, the genero
us, multiyear commitment will help scale the organization’s programs and expose participants to a broader range of industry-leading products and applications.
A Long History of Support
Rockwell Automation has provided more than $15M of broad-based support over the past 10 years to address the critical need to fill science, technology, education and math (STEM) jobs that drive innovation. Many of these jobs go unfilled because of both the lack of awareness of the kinds of high-tech jobs available, and the lack of skills to qualify for today’s needs.
“Through our technology and people, we are helping to inspire the next generation of innovators to fill the talent pipeline for our customers and for our company,” said Blake Moret, President and CEO, Rockwell Automation. “Our strategic partnership with FIRST helps us increase our reach and visibility to STEM students around the world.”
In addition to being a global sponsor of the FIRST LEGO League program and sole sponsor of the FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Rockwell Automation Innovation in Control Award, nearly 200 Rockwell Automation employees around the world donate their time for the FIRST programs, and more than 300 employees volunteer for the organization in other capacities. The company also donates products integral to FIRST program games and scoring. These product donations are specifically used for the FIRST Robotics Competition playing fields and scoring systems and are included within the parts kits that teams use to build their robots.
Rockwell Automation is recognized as a FIRST Strategic Partner, which signifies the highest levels of sponsorship available at FIRST. It is also a FIRST Robotics Competition Crown Supplier.
Based in Manchester, NH, FIRST designs accessible, innovative programs to build self-confidence, knowledge, and life skills while motivating young people to pursue opportunities in science, technology, and engineering. With support from over 200 of the Fortune 500 companies and more than $30 million in college scholarships, the not-for-profit organization hosts the FIRST Robotics Competition for students in Grades 9-12; FIRST Tech Challenge for Grades 7-12; FIRST LEGO League for Grades 4-8; and FIRST LEGO League Jr. for Grades K-4. FIRST’s Gracious Professionalism efforts focus on a way of doing things that encourages high-quality work, emphasizes the value of others, and respects individuals and the community.
To learn more, go to firstinspires.org, or CLICK HERE.