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APS, Phoenix Suns Partner to Bring STEM to AZ Students

​Each year, energy companies across the nation partner with local professional sports teams to help the community. This year, APS and the Phoenix Suns are again teaming up to help Arizona teachers bring innovative hands-on learning to more than 6,000 students in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) through financial grants totaling $50,000.  

The grants were recently awarded to 25 elementary and high school teachers throughout Arizona and will be used by teachers to provide a wide range of STEM-related content, including robotics, gardening, water harvesting, computer coding, and designing and building classroom furniture.

“These grants are relatively small, but they can make a big difference to a teacher with an innovative idea on how to get students interested in math and science,” said John Hatfield, APS Vice President of Communications and Community Affairs. “These programs are so important because many of the best jobs in Arizona’s economic future will require technical skills.”  

For the past 12 years, APS and the Phoenix Suns have partnered to promote STEM education in Arizona schools by annually awarding $50,000 in mini-grants for STEM-focused subjects. The grants were available to all kindergarten through 12th-grade teachers in public and charter schools in APS service territories.

“This STEM mini-grant will allow our students to combine critical thinking and creativity,” said Jonathan Perrone, a STEM mini-grant recipient and STEAM Instructor at Mountain Sky Middle School. “Our particular grant will allow our students to design new desks and tables for our STEAM Lab. Students will use computer-aided design software to model their prototypes, then they will be able to build desks and tables with furniture pipe and wooden surfaces.”