The donation came as part of Paycom’s FIRST Robotics/First Down initiative with Oklahoma State University and the University of Oklahoma’s football teams. Paycom donated $25 to FIRST Robotics for every OSU and OU first down throughout the 2021 college football season.
“As an organization focused on innovation and championing our next generation of STEM leaders, Paycom is pleased to support impactful competitions like those offered by FIRST Robotics,” said Jason Bodin, Paycom’s senior director of marketing and communications. “Competitions like these bring students together, expand their thinking and encourage interest in vital fields for our economy like technology and engineering.”
The donation enabled the Oklahoma teams to remain in-state for their regional competitions. Students competed for honors and recognition that reward design excellence, competitive play, sportsmanship and high-impact partnerships between schools, businesses and communities. The top finishers advanced to the world championships in Houston on April 20-23.
“Over a six-week timeframe, students work with professional engineering mentors to design a robot that solves a problem using a Kit of Parts and a standard set of rules,” said Melinda Taylor, FIRST’s Oklahoma regional director. “Once these young inventors create the robot, their teams participate in regional competitions that measure the effectiveness of each robot, the power of collaboration and the determination of students. Competitions like this give students a reason to get excited about math and science.”
Oklahoma teams came from Adair, Ada, Anadarko, Bartlesville, Bethany, Bixby, Broken Arrow, Chickasha, Seminole, Edmond, Fort Cobb, Fort Gibson, Gans, Grove, Henryetta, Idabel, Jenks, Lawton, Mustang, Newcastle, Norman, Oklahoma City, Okmulgee, Pryor, Sapulpa, Shawnee, Stillwater, Tahlequah, Enid and Tulsa. Along with the 43 teams from Oklahoma, the two regional events brought teams from five other states and Mexico.