Union Gas supports FIRST Robotics Canada with $50,000 grant

CHATHAM, ON, March 22, 2016 /CNW/ - For the fourth consecutive year, Union Gas, a Gold Level Sponsor of FIRST Robotics Canada (FIRST), will support 10 Ontario teams as well as three robotics competitions across the province through a $50,000 grant.  

FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC), run by FIRST, is an annual competition where high school students team up with companies to build robots in high-intensity 'robo-sports' competitions with the help of volunteer professional mentors.

Union Gas has mentored several of the teams, with company employees volunteering to give direction and support, as well as acting as judges at some of the competitions. To view a list of the teams visit:  www.uniongas.com/community/partnerships/first-robotics.

"The ultimate goal for Union Gas and its support of FIRST is to inspire young people to pursue further studies and careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics," said Paul Rietdyk, ‎vice president of engineering, construction and storage and transmission operations for Union Gas.

Over six weeks, student teams raise funds, design a team brand, and build and program robots to perform specific tasks against competitors in regional events held in several provinces. FIRST Robotics Competitions combine the excitement of sport with the rigours of the STEM disciplines: science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

"FIRST Robotics Canada is very pleased to be partnering with Union Gas at the provincial Gold sponsorship level," said Mark Breadner, Executive Director, FIRST Robotics Canada. "This funding will greatly assist our mission of inspiring young people to pursue further studies and careers in the fields of science, technology and engineering and mathematics.  We are thrilled to have many excellent Union Gas mentors and volunteers involved at our events this year."

For more than 100 years, Union Gas has been privileged to work in more than 400 Ontario communities. In addition to providing natural gas delivery services for homes and businesses, Union Gas has contributed to the province through economic investments, available jobs, municipal taxes, energy efficiency programs, volunteer hours, charitable giving and sponsorships. Last year alone, Union Gas contributed over $3.3 million to community and charitable organizations across Ontario, including more than $1,019,000 to United Way. In addition Union Gas employees, retirees, family and friends provided over 19,600 volunteer hours to help strengthen the communities where they live and work. For more information visit uniongas.com/community.

About FIRST Robotics Canada
FIRST Robotics Canada, a registered charity, was established in 2001 and incorporated in 2004 with a mission to inspire Canadian high school and elementary school students to pursue further studies and careers in science, technology and engineering. It pursues its mission primarily through offering opportunities for students, working in teams and assisted by expert adult mentors, to build robots and to take part in tournaments which feature on-field competitions, judged awards and other forms of recognition, potentially including university and college scholarships.  For more information, visit firstroboticscanada.org or find us on Twitter: twitter.com/CANFIRST, Facebook: Facebook.com/FIRSTRoboticCanada and YouTube: youtube.com/user/FIRSTRoboticsCanada.

About Union Gas
Union Gas Limited is a major Canadian natural gas storage, transmission and distribution company based in Ontario with 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. Union Gas, named one of Canada's Top 100 Employers  for 2015, is a Spectra Energy (NYSE: SE) company with assets of $6.4 billion and approximately 2,200 employees. For more information, visit uniongas.com or find us on Twitter: twitter.com/uniongas, Facebook: facebook.com/uniongas and YouTube: youtube.com/user/uniongas.

SOURCE Union Gas Limited

For further information: Union Gas, Andrea Stass, Manager, External Communications and Media Relations, Ph: 519 436-5490 or 1-800-571-8446 ext. 5005490, Cell: 519 365-1010, astass@uniongas.com; FIRST Robotics Canada, Mark Breadner, Executive Director, Ph: 416 453-6844, Mark.Breadner@firstroboticscanada.org

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