Local Phoenix company aims to double computer robotics grant

March 18, 2008

By hammersmith

FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is a 501(c)3 organization that presents robotics programs to encourage students to pursue STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) courses in school by participating in exciting robotics events. Students who participate on a FIRST team are eligible for over $9 million in scholarships!

We, in Arizona, have a unique opportunity to have our sponsorship dollars to support these events DOUBLED through a grant from Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz), www.sfaz.org/, who will match funds donated from individuals, organizations, and industry. As Principal Investigator for an existing SFAz grant, (FIRST Arizona Innovation Initiative), Steve Sanghi, President and CEO of Microchip Technology Inc. are Co-Principal Investigators for an addendum to that grant for additional support, and SFAz will match up to $500,000 of funds that are raised for this additional proposal. What does that mean to you, as a fan and supporter of FIRST in Arizona?

Your commitment to a donation will be matched by SFAz, so you can double the support to FIRST. The money is to be spent in Arizona in support of Arizona FIRST events and Arizona teams. You will be helping your local community create your future employees, your future customers, and your future citizens.

How will your money be spent? Here are some of the ways your sponsorship dollars will be spent:

  • Support of teams to participate in Arizona FIRST events.
  • Support of FIRST events in Arizona.
  • Support of workshops for teachers and mentors to train them in curriculum that will aid them in supporting robotics teams

Our goal with this grant is to grow FIRST in Arizona. We currently have 38 high schools FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) teams in Arizona, and we want to grow that to 100 teams within 5 years. In order continue this opportunity for our students in Arizona, we need money every year from the community to make that happen. This year, we have a unique opportunity to really make an impact with matching funds from SFAz.

How can you help? The supplemental budget to the grant must be submitted within the next few weeks. Hopefully, SFAz will accept it. If you are interested in supporting this effort and having your funds matched, please provide the following information by April 15, 2008, so I can include you contribution in the proposal to SFAz. The supplemental proposal will be submitted through the Microchip Technology Charitable Foundation for FIRST in Arizona, and will be managed in Arizona.

  • Notification of Commitment
  • Name (or organization or company) of donor
  • Amount of sponsorship
  • Send to: Carol Popovich at carol.popovich@microchip.com, Microchip Technology Inc., 2355 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler, AZ 85524

Payment of pledges is due anytime between June 1, 2008 and January 31, 2009. Make checks out to: Microchip Technology Charitable Foundation (This is a “501(c)3” foundation for tax purposes). Donations are tax deductible.