Investing in Our Future

June 5, 2019

One of the best ways to make our communities stronger is to invest in the future. And, our future is through our children. The FirstEnergy Foundation has provided abundant support benefiting children’s initiatives. Here are a few examples.

Tom Haynes, acting External Affairs consultant, Jersey Central Power & Light (JCP&L), presented a $2,500 FirstEnergy Foundation check to the Morris Educational Foundation at the Hillcrest School for a science project. The Light Up Learning Grant provided light tables, translucent manipulatives and translucent sensory materials for student discovery in the STEM-focused lab.

Joining a group of Hillcrest students are (back row, l.-r.): Debbie Sontupe, Morris Educational Foundation; Erica Hartman, Morris School District; Greg Sumski, Hillcrest School; Tom; and Brian Young, Morris School District.

Gary Mason, External Affairs consultant, Met-Ed, delivers a $5,000 FirstEnergy Foundation check to Denise Smith, State Theatre Center for the Arts in Easton, Pa. The check supports the center’s FREDDY Awards High School program – the most prominent of its kind in the nation. Since 2003, the FREDDY program has served more than 48,000 high school students and their families from 33 schools. Modeled after the TONY Awards, the program is designed to recognize and reward excellence in the performance and production of musical theater programs in local high schools.

Ned Kendall III, Regional External Affairs consultant, Penelec (c.), presents a $5,000 FirstEnergy Foundation check to Mandi and Beth Paronish (r.) of Small Town Hope, a children-centered nonprofit organization. The group seeks to provide evidence-based programs for troubled children. Also in the photo are Cambria County commissioners (l.) Mark Wissinger and Tom Chernisky.

The FirstEnergy Foundation recently donated $12,000 to Meet the Mars Challenge in Penn Power’s Cranberry area. According to the event’s website, the challenge “invites second through eighth graders to identify a problem, challenge or need that our earthling pioneers of the Next Great Frontier, Planet Mars, will face in their new settlement and try to solve it.” Students compete in a variety of categories, including mechanical, agricultural, relationship and survival. The competition was held in conjunction with the Mars New Year celebration, slated May 31 to June 2.

At the presentation are (l.-r.): Mike Harvey, chief meteorologist, WTAE-TV in Pittsburgh; Rob Lombardo, Regional External Affairs consultant, West Penn Power/Penn Power; and Shelly Watson, chairwoman, Meet the Mars Challenge.