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Foundation awards grant to Springfield school to start robotics program

(SBG photo)

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. -- More than $50,000 worth of grants were given to teachers and students in Springfield Thursday.

The Springfield Education Foundation handed out 35 grants ranging from a few hundred to $3,000, and the money is being put to good use.

Drummers led the way to Gwen Belden's classroom at the Academy of Arts and Academics Friday.

Belden and her students submitted a grant to start an advanced robotics course at the school.

"They researched the problem, they looked at other schools who had done similar things, they put together the grant and they submitted it to the Springfield Education Foundation," said Belden.

They won the grant.

"I'm so enthused,” said senior Nicholas Sabrowski. “I wasn't sure what we were up against as far as other people submitting their grants, but we put our heart and soul into it really."

Right now, they’re using robot kits.

Now they want to move to the next step, creating their own unique robots.

The $3,000 grant will pay for the materials.

"I'm totally excited for the future of this class,” said Benjamin. “Now that we've got this funding, we'll be able to afford plenty of materials and we can take this all the way to even more advanced classes."

In this era of budget cuts, this grant helps bring new innovative science programs into our schools - in this case, creating future engineers.

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