BSNB Continues Support for Innovation
The Ballston Spa Central School District has once again received generous support from Ballston Spa National Bank (BSNB) to fund the Ballston Spa High School Robotics Team’s participation in the annual US FIRST Robotics competition. The $6,000 in funding, combined with additional corporate sponsorships and team fundraising, will allow the district’s team to design and construct a robot according to this year’s specifications, participate in regional competitions, and continue to expand the robotics initiatives to additional students in the district.
“On behalf of our team at BSNB, I would like to congratulate the Ballston Spa Central School District and the other corporate partners for their efforts to develop this highly successful program,” said Chris Dowd, president and CEO of Ballston Spa National Bank. “Thanks to strong leadership and the active engagement of students, the program provides a meaningful and very effective complement to the educational infrastructure in this region. For those not familiar with the program, I encourage attending a competition to see firsthand the energy generated and the impressive results of the students’ efforts.”
The district continues to focus on partnerships with business and non-profit organizations throughout the region as part of the Partnership for Innovation in Education program. The Ballston Spa High School Robotics Team uses the support they receive to mentor and sponsor nine STEM related teams in the elementary and middle schools, and to participate in regional competitions.
“Since sponsoring the first High School team eleven years ago, BSNB’s ongoing commitment has helped our program grow to eight teams across the district this year and helped our students compete three times in the World Finals,” said Ken Slentz, Superintendent of the Ballston Spa schools. He further indicated that “The district would not be able to provide this opportunity for over 100 students without BSNB’s partnership and leadership.”
FIRST Robotics competitions combine the excitement of sport with the rigors of science and technology. Under strict rules, limited resources, and time limits, teams of 25 students or more are challenged to raise funds, design a team "brand", hone teamwork skills, and build and program robots to perform prescribed tasks against a field of competitors. It’s as close to "real-world engineering" as a student can get. Volunteer professional mentors lend their time and talents to guide each team. Through the program students get to learn 21st Century skills from professional mentors; build and compete with a robot of their own design; learn to use sophisticated software and hardware; and compete and cooperate in alliances and tournaments.
For additional information on the BSCSD Partnership for Innovation in Education program, please contact the Coordinator of Advancement, at 884-7195 ext. 1369.
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