Subscribe to our free, weekly email newsletter!


Emerson Power Transmission Solutions honored for championing national science and technology program

Company receives Achieving Excellence Together Award for establishing and supporting FIRST program aimed at inspiring students in engineering and robotics.
By Modern Materials Handling Staff
September 26, 2013

Emerson Industrial Automation has received the Achieving Excellence Together Award from the Boone County Board of Education in recognition of the company’s efforts to establish the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) program at Ryle High School in Union, Ky.

Ed Massey, chairman of the Boone County School Board, presented the award at a recent Board meeting to Tony Pajk, president, Emerson Industrial Automation; Merle Heckman, manager of organizational development; and David Lindsay, global P/N data process manager. Emerson is the primary funder for the three-year-old program that has a mission “to transform our culture by creating a world where science and technology are celebrated and where young people dream of becoming science and technology leaders.” The company and school board plan to expand the program county-wide based on its success at Ryle.

The Achieving Excellence Together Award is given by the Boone County Board of Education to a company or individual who has demonstrated outstanding commitment and service to the district. At the award presentation Massey praised Pajk, Heckman and Lindsay for, “establishing a vision for developing a robotics program for our high schools, directing funds for the project and providing leadership and staff time to make it happen.”

FIRST was founded in 1989 by Dean Kamen, entrepreneur and inventor of the Segway, with the goal of inspiring students in engineering and technology fields. The organization is the foundation for the annual FIRST Robotics Competition that brings together teams from all over the world. Teams build robots designed to achieve specific tasks, such as climbing a ladder or throwing a Frisbee into a bin. The challenge changes each year and teams compete on the regional, district and state levels in an effort to qualify for the FIRST Championship. Team members are eligible for more than $16 million in college scholarships from more than 165 providers.

Pajk learned about the program after seeing Kamen speak at a conference in 2009, and immediately realized the value the program could bring to the community, as well as the potential future business benefit. “This is an opportunity for the math- and science-focused students to apply their talents and compete on the international level,” said Pajk. “This could be the spark that leads them into a career in engineering, so in a way, we’re developing local engineering talent just as coaches develop athletic talent.”

Pajk enlisted the help of Heckman and Lindsay to establish, promote and administrate the program locally and, after receiving enthusiastic support from principals and school board members, the Ryle program was started. Lindsay’s daughter is a student at Ryle and part of the school’s 10-member FIRST team. As the program expands to the county’s other three high schools, organizers are looking to hire a coach to provide guidance to the teams, and prepare them for the robotics competition.

Subscribe to Modern Materials Handling magazine

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Find out what the world’s most innovative companies are doing to improve productivity in their plants and distribution centers.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Recent Entries

According to Panjiva data, July shipments-at 952,126-were up 1 percent over June, following sequential gains of 7 percent for May over April and 1 percent for June over May.

40.6 million-square-foot WLC to yield an estimated 13,000 construction jobs and 20,000 permanent jobs at a variety of skill levels.

Study illustrates how worker and pallet location can influence stress on back muscles and provides suggestions for improvement.

Supply Chain Expert John Caltagirone is working with an increasing number of large companies that need help addressing key issues that “keep them up at night.” Here’s what Caltagirone recommends supply chain managers do right now to prepare for the future.

Manufacturing forecast predicts an increase of 124,000 jobs in 2015, 94,000 in 2016 and 30,000 jobs in 2017.

About the Author

Josh Bond, Senior Editor
Josh Bond is Senior Editor for Modern, and was formerly Modern’s lift truck columnist and associate editor. He has a degree in Journalism from Keene State College and has studied business management at Franklin Pierce University.


© Copyright 2015 Peerless Media LLC, a division of EH Publishing, Inc • 111 Speen Street, Ste 200, Framingham, MA 01701 USA