Pair of Catholic campuses score D-backs grant

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Pictured, left to right, are Erin Alaimo, Sr. Joan Fitzgerald, BVM, and Nathan Ward. (courtesy photo)
Pictured, left to right, are Erin Alaimo, Sr. Joan Fitzgerald, BVM, and Nathan Ward. (courtesy photo)

Xavier College Preparatory and St. John Bosco Catholic School are among 22 schools statewide who scored a home run through the D-backs $100,000 School Challenge. Each will earn on-field recognition during a home game this season and funds for school improvements or innovative educational programs.

The Gators went up to bat first. Xavier’s longtime principal Sr. Joan Fitzgerald, BVM, robotics instructor Nathan Ward, and marketing director Erin Alaimo accepted the award on Xavier’s behalf during the pregame show April 5.

Xavier’s grant will support the school’s making and robotics program. It merges the intellectual with the experiential for science, technology, engineering, art and math courses. The grant money is earmarked for purchasing a full-spectrum laser cutter, CAD software, and soldering equipment.

“We will be able to give young women hands-on experience using tools that marry high-tech equipment with their creative ideas to explore areas that will help them achieve at the next level,” Ward said in a press release.

Grant monies for St. John Bosco will support its “Water and the Mysteries That It Holds” project. More information on that is forthcoming.

More than 300 schools from across Arizona submitted grant applications. Derrick Hall, D-backs president and CEO, said the team is proud to help schools encourage innovation, education, nutrition and fitness plus campus improvements.

“Each year the applications get more creative and we see that in many cases this type of funding is a necessity,” Hall said in a statement.

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