Editor’s note: LimeLight is a regular feature from WRAL TechWire offering another means of publishing noteworthy news. Be sure to check out more LimeLight worthy news at this link.

DURHAM – Wolfspeed will sponsor the FIRST® Robotics Competition, the Durham-headquartered semiconductor company announced today.

The competition is described in a statement as “a hands-on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) program that combines the excitement of athletics with the rigors of science and technology for high school students.”

Initially, the company donated $25,000 to the SUNY Poly Foundation in November 2019 to provide support for multiple teams participating in New York.

“We are thrilled to be a sponsor of the FIRST® Robotics Competition in our communities,” said Wolfspeed Senior Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Tamara Pearce, in a statement. “Our company represents 35 years of innovation, and we are proud to contribute as the participants work together to create solutions and change the world for better. The jobs of the future don’t even exist yet, but this program helps develop the curiosity and problem-solving needed to be successful and adaptive to any challenges that the coming years may bring.”

Wolfspeed CEO: Breaking ground on Monday to do things that are unprecedented

About the FIRST program

According to the statement, the FIRST high school-age program, FIRST Robotics Competition, “challenges teams of students to build and program industrial-sized robots, ultimately playing a field game in an alliance with other teams and competing to attend the annual FIRST Championship.”

For 2023, the program will mimic real-world engineering scenarios and develops supplemental skillsets, such as collaboration, fundraising, and marketing and will focus on United Nations’ sustainable development goal of ensuring access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for all.

“Building on their continued commitment to endorse STEM programs and minimize opportunity gaps for underrepresented populations, we are proud to have Wolfspeed’s support as a sponsor,” said Collin Fultz, Senior Program Director of FIRST Robotics Competition, in a statement.

Wolfspeed will sponsor the FIRST Robotics Competition in Durham, North Carolina; Morgan Hill, California; Fayetteville, Arkansas; and Mesa, Arizona, according to the statement.

The semiconductor company announced a $5 billion facility in Chatham County earlier this year and is headquartered in Durham.

Wolfspeed announces $5 billion investment in Chatham County, largest in NC history