$2,500 sponsorship & mentor, support Sir Winston Churchill students in
THUNDER BAY, ON, May 9, 2013 /CNW/ - Union Gas is helping "SWC Robotics"
- a rookie team of Thunder Bay high school students - who attended the
FIRST Robotics Canada Greater Toronto West Regional competition at the
end of March.
The team received a $2,500 grant from Union Gas, presented by Luke
Skaarup, Union Gas manager of construction and growth for northwestern
Ontario, at the teams showcase event held at Sir Winston Churchill
library last night. The event allowed all sponsors to see what the team
had accomplished throughout the season and meet their robot.
In the annual FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) facilitated by FIRST
Robotics Canada, high school students team up with technology companies
to build 5-foot, 140-pound robots to compete in high intensity
"robo-sports". Volunteer professional mentors are assigned to each
team. In just six weeks, the teams of 25+ students raise funds, design
a team "brand" and build and program robots to perform specific tasks
"Nothing beats hands-on experience and mentorship. Programs like this
will help today's young people develop the skills they need to build a
bright future for themselves and their world," Skaarup said. "Union Gas
believes that supporting young Ontarians' interest in innovation,
science and technology is an investment worth making, and we're proud
to support the SWC Robotics through our grant and mentor for this
FRC teams participate in regional competitions and can earn a place in a
world championship. Ontario participants can also qualify for over $16
million in university scholarships.
"FRC combines the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and
technology," said Mark Breadner, executive director from FIRST Robotics
Canada. "It's as close to 'real-world engineering' as a student can
"As a rookie team, we weren't totally sure what to expect at the
competition so we were very excited and a little nervous," said Phil
Bystrican a grade 11 student who co-captained the team. "But having a
company like Union Gas in our corner is a huge help with regards to
finding sponsors, design philosophy and especially project management."
Union Gas works in hundreds of Ontario communities, including many in
the northwest district. The company is committed to contributing to the
communities it serves by supporting direct and indirect employment,
offering energy efficiency programs, and helping local organizations
through sponsorships, charitable giving and hundreds of volunteer
hours. For example, in the northwest, Union Gas has supported
organizations including Leadership Thunder Bay and Lakehead Region
Conservation Authority. In 2012, Union Gas and its employees also
contributed more than $24,000 to United Way of Thunder Bay.
About Union Gas
Union Gas Limited is a major Canadian natural gas storage, transmission
and distribution company based in Ontario with over 100 years of
experience and service to customers. The distribution business serves
about 1.4 million residential, commercial and industrial customers in
more than 400 communities across northern, southwestern and eastern
Ontario. One of Canada's Top 100 Employers for 2013, Union Gas is a
Spectra Energy (NYSE: SE) company with assets of $5.8 billion and
approximately 2,200 employees. For more information, visit uniongas.com.
About FIRST Robotics Canada
FIRST Robotics Canada runs the FIRST program in Ontario and supports the
program in other provinces. Our mission is to inspire young people to
be science and technology leaders, by engaging them in exciting
mentor-based programs that build science, engineering and technology
skills, that inspire innovation, and that foster well-rounded life
capabilities including self-confidence, communication, and leadership.
We pursue this mission primarily through running high-energy robotics
competitions. For more information, visit firstroboticscanada.org.
SOURCE: Union Gas Limited
For further information:
Union Gas Limited
Andrea Stass, Manager, External Communications and Media Relations
Ph: 519 436-5490 or 1-800-571-8446 ext. 5005490
Cell: 519 365-1010
FIRST Robotics Canada
Mark Breadner, Executive Director
Ph: 519 453-6844
Sir Winston Churchill Collegiate & Vocational Institute