JUNO BEACH, Fla., Oct. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) announced yesterday that it will offer a $20,000 STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) education college scholarship to a student from throughout the company's service area.
"At FPL, we're partnering with our school districts to make Florida an even better place to live and work," said Eric Silagy, president and CEO of FPL. "Our support for STEM education programs is something all FPL employees take great pride in and the robotics scholarship we're announcing today is yet one more example of our commitment to developing the next generation of engineers, scientists and other related professionals."
Silagy was joined by Florida Governor Rick Scott at the company's Juno Beach headquarters, where the company showcased its STEM education efforts. During the event, FPL announced that it will award a $5,000 renewable scholarship to a high school senior who has participated for two or more years in a FIRST® (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science) robotics program in FPL's service area, has a cumulative GPA of 3.5 and has been accepted to an accredited four-year college or university majoring in engineering or information technology. Provided the student maintains a college GPA of 3.0, the scholarship is renewable for up to four years, totaling $20,000 in college tuition assistance.
"Robotics programs help prepare today's students for exciting, well-paying jobs in the future – and these are the employees that FPL and other Florida companies will need going forward," said Silagy. "Students who participate in these programs not only learn engineering and programming skills, but gain team and creative experiences that will help them thrive in a competitive work environment."
Across the state, FPL sponsors 50 robotics teams and also sponsors the Southeast Florida FIRST regional competition, which will be held in West Palm Beach in 2016.
"We want Florida to be first for jobs, and we must have a skilled workforce to reach that goal. By investing in science, technology, engineering and math education, we are ensuring our students are prepared for the jobs of the future," said Governor Scott.
Recently, FPL provided a $25,000 matching grant to the North East Florida Educational Consortium (NEFEC) and the Foundation for Rural Education Excellence, its charitable arm, to start 15 FIRST programs in rural Northeast Florida. Additionally, FPL will sponsor the 2016 Northeast Florida FIRST robotics regional competition held in the spring at the University of North Florida.
In all, nearly 1,300 Florida schools have been touched by an FPL education program, including robotics clubs, an electric car build as part of the Miami ePrix electric race series and "Men in Plaid," a traveling school assembly show about energy conservation. FPL has constructed more than 125 school solar energy stations and trained nearly 600 teachers in a curriculum used in conjunction with the solar stations. Last year, FPL hosted two STEM teachers from the School District of Palm Beach County in paid "externships." The teachers spent the summer working alongside FPL professionals, seeing firsthand how skills acquired in STEM curricula translate into real world jobs – insights they will take back to their classrooms.
For more information on FPL's education programs please visit www.FPL.com/education.
To download photos and video from today's event please visit: www.FPL.com/newsroom.
Florida Power & Light Company
Florida Power & Light Company is the third-largest electric utility in the United States, serving approximately 4.8 million customer accounts across nearly half of the state of Florida. FPL's typical 1,000-kWh residential customer bill is approximately 30 percent lower than the latest national average and, in 2014, was the lowest in Florida among reporting utilities for the fifth year in a row. FPL's service reliability is better than 99.98 percent, and its highly fuel-efficient power plant fleet is one of the cleanest among all utilities nationwide. The company was recognized in 2015 as one of the most trusted U.S. electric utilities by Market Strategies International. A leading Florida employer with approximately 8,700 employees, FPL is a subsidiary of Juno Beach, Fla.-based NextEra Energy, Inc. (NYSE: NEE), a clean energy company widely recognized for its efforts in sustainability, ethics and diversity, including being ranked in the top 10 worldwide for innovativeness and community responsibility as part of Fortune's 2015 list of "World's Most Admired Companies." NextEra Energy is also the parent company of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC, which, together with its affiliated entities, is the world's largest generator of renewable energy from the wind and sun. For more information, visit these websites: www.NextEraEnergy.com, www.FPL.com, www.NextEraEnergyResources.com.
SOURCE Florida Power & Light Company