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Duke Energy awards $20,000 for STEM education

Gaston County Schools receives $20,000 grant from Duke Energy

Gaston County Schools is one of six local organizations to receive an impact grant from Duke Energy.  The $20,000 award will be used to support the school district’s STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education efforts.

An awards presentation was held November 11 at Gaston College.  Superintendent of Schools W. Jeffrey Booker attended the ceremony to accept the award.

Dr. Booker said, “We appreciate Duke Energy’s efforts to support STEM education in Gaston County Schools.  Because of our ongoing partnership with Duke Energy, we are able to fund important programs such as the Gaston Regional Science and Engineering Fair that emphasize the importance of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and encourage the involvement of students in STEM activities.”

Students in Gaston County’s elementary, middle, and high schools have been researching and developing hypotheses, conducting experiments, and analyzing results in preparation for next month’s Gaston Regional Science and Engineering Fair. 

The annual science fair will be held January 20-21 at the Schiele Museum.  The event showcases students’ independent research of a topic using the scientific method.  Students entering the science fair are responsible for the work associated with formulating a research problem and determining results, which helps the students develop their reasoning, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills. 

“The investment in Gaston County Schools is a prime example of Duke Energy’s steadfast commitment to our community,” added Dr. Booker.  “We are honored to be among the six organizations receiving a grant from Duke Energy, and we are confident that the grant funds will be put to good use as we provide STEM-related academic, extracurricular, and enrichment opportunities for our students to learn, grow, and thrive.” 

Other grant recipients include the Catawba Riverkeeper Foundation, Gaston Community Foundation, Gaston College, TechWorks Gaston, and Schiele Museum.  The recipients are sharing in a total of $200,000 to support their efforts of “powering the future of Gaston County.”  The funds will be used for education, job training, environmental preservation, community needs, and other important programs.

“We are proud to partner with local organizations that are committed to supporting and sustaining the quality of life in Gaston County,” said Stephen De May, president of Duke Energy in North Carolina.  “Since 2010, Duke Energy has awarded more than $1.3 million in foundation and community grants in Gaston County, which is an important community to Duke Energy as we have provided service to customers in Gaston County for more than a century.”