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O&R Donates $20,000 to Rockland High Schools’ Robot Builders; Helps Bring High–tech Studies to Life

As part of its focus on STEM education development, Orange and Rockland Utilities (O&R) has contributed $5,000 each to help support robotics programs at Clarkstown-North, Nanuet, North Rockland and Tappan Zee high schools.

Those schools’ students’ robotic building skills were put to the test last weekend when 48 local and international robotics teams competed in the 2024 Hudson Valley Regional FIRST Robotics Competition at the Rockland Community College Fieldhouse in Suffern.

This event marks the post-pandemic return of the competition to the lower Hudson Valley. The competition was made possible in part through an additional $25,000 grant from O&R. The contribution of a Mobile Machine Shop was made by O&R’s affiliate utility, Con Edison. The Con Edison Mobile Machine Shop was staffed by company employees who supported students with critical last-minute or emergency repairs to their equipment during the competition.

FIRST stands for: For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST).

FIRST Robotics Competition celebrates the achievements of high school students who have designed and built a custom robot in just eight weeks for this year’s challenge. Teams use their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) skills and creative power to turn up the volume as they design, build, and program their robots for action-packed game play.

These games are designed to inspire a lifelong love of learning that is critical to persevere in today’s ever-changing workforce and to develop innovators, technology leaders and creative problem solvers for the future.

Tappan Zee High School senior Molly Culot, a member of the school’s SOBOTZ robotics team said, “Everyone on our robotics team plays a big role in getting our robot to function, as well as focusing on outreach and our impact on changing people’s lives. We support educational initiatives for students K-12 and do various fundraising events to help students access STEM education.”

About O&R

Orange and Rockland Utilities, Inc. (O&R), a wholly owned subsidiary of Consolidated Edison, Inc., one of the nation’s largest investor-owned energy companies, is a regulated utility. O&R provides electric service to approximately 300,000 customers in southeastern New York State (where its franchise name is Orange & Rockland) and northern New Jersey (where it’s Rockland Electric Company) and natural gas service to approximately 130,000 customers in New York.