Long Island Students to Receive Scholarships Valued at $125,000

The School - Business Partnerships of Long Island (SBPLI), sponsor of the Long Island Regional FIRST Robotics Competition is proud to announce that four Long Island high school students from the 2004 LI-FIRST Robotics competition have been awarded scholarships from accredited institutions in the field of technology.

The four students, Andrew Anderson of Port Jefferson, Kristopher Lee of West Islip, Frederick Liguori of Longwood and Gregory Lilly of Miller Place received combined scholarships in the amount of $125,000 over four years. Clarkson University awarded both Anderson and Lee scholarships worth $6000 a year. Liguori received a scholarship from Drexel University valued at $8000 per year.  Lilly's scholarship from The Florida Institute of Technology is for $10,000 a year.

This season, participating FIRST students were eligible to apply for over $3.8 million in scholarships from leading universities, colleges and companies.  Between the 2002 and 2003 competitions, Long Island students walked away with over $400,000 combined in college scholarships.  With additional scholarships yet to be announced, the amount of scholarships awarded to Long Island students is likely to grow. As a source of scholarships, the program surpasses Intel's International Science and Engineering Fair.

"The FIRST Robotics Competition is not just about the design and building of sophisticated robots.  These students also develop maturity, professionalism, teamwork and mentoring skills that enrich their lives," said Fred Breithut, President of School-Business Partnerships of Long Island (SBPLI) and sponsor of the Long Island FIRST Regional Robotics Competition.  "Many of our students develop an affinity for their science and math courses, go on to study engineering, technology or science in college, and also pursue employment opportunities with sponsoring companies."

Since its beginning, FIRST has had a positive impact on students and academic communities. Surveys conducted by the Center for Essential Management Services found that participating students' attitudes about science, math, teamwork and the working world significantly improved after participating. The students' self image also improved, particularly among minority groups.  Also, interest in internships and employment opportunities with sponsoring local companies increased.