Press release
North America
April 8, 2013

Evonik Corporation Donates $5,000 To Local Student Robotics Teams

Donation Encourages Educational, Professional Development Among Students

Evonik Corporation has donated $5,000 to Team NanoGurus and Team Overdrive, two New Jersey-based student robotics teams.

Evonik Corporation donated $3,000 to purchase necessary equipment to compete in the annual For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST) robotics competition. The list of equipment includes laptops, new computer software and robotics parts. An additional donation of $1,000 was given to each team as a reward for earning an invitation to the FIRST Tech Challenge World Championship in St. Louis, Mo.

Out of 48 competing teams, Team NanoGurus and Team Overdrive were the only two teams selected from New Jersey. 127 teams from 16 countries will compete at the FIRST Tech Challenge World Championship being held April 24-27.

“We are very grateful for Evonik Corporation’s continued support and sponsorship of both teams,” said Shikha Saxena, coach of Team NanoGurus. “This program is great for the students because it is not limited to teaching them about science and engineering but involves other skills critical to personal development. Team members must persevere when facing adversity and learn teamwork, leadership and problem-solving throughout the competition. These characteristics aren’t usually taught in schools but are invaluable for future success.”

FIRST is a non-profit robotics program created to inspire students aged 9-18 to pursue further education and careers in science, engineering and technology. In the FIRST competition, teams use Legos® and Tetrix® parts to design and build robots later used to perform tasks and complete challenges.

“We strongly believe educational and team-based programs are critical to the development of our youth,” said Burkhard Zoller, Evonik Corporation’s senior vice president of Inorganic Materials. “This robotics program inspires innovation, creativity and perseverance, which are major components of our culture at Evonik Corporation. We have observed these qualities among NanoGurus and Overdrive team members. Our donation is a great way to continue fostering these qualities among the leaders of tomorrow.”

Team NanoGurus competes in the First Lego League (FLL) division open for students between the ages of 9-14 and the First Tech Challenge (FTC) division open for students aged 14-18. Team Overdrive competes in the FTC division only.

The members from Team NanoGurus include Megha Mansuria, 12; Yash Patel, 13; Divya Bhagat, 13; Param Shukla, 13; Matthew Bu, 16; Shreya Khajuria, 16; Vinayak Kumar, 16; Shivali Chandra, 17; and Thomas Maddox, 17.

Players from Team Overdrive are Cara Scalzo, 15; Jim Buckman, 15; Andrew Bartz, 16; Natalie Thompson, 16; Jacob Ultzhoffer, 16; Jake Buckman, 16; and Matthew Thompson, 18.

For additional information about Evonik in North America, please visit our website: Please visit us on Facebook at Follow us on Twitter at

About Evonik

Evonik, the creative industrial group from Germany, is one of the world leaders
in specialty chemicals. Profitable growth and a sustained increase in the value of the company form the heart of Evonik’s corporate strategy. Its activities focus on the key megatrends health, nutrition, resource efficiency and globalization. Evonik benefits specifically from its innovative prowess and integrated technology platforms.

Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world. In fiscal 2012 more than 33,000 employees generated sales of around €13.6 billion and an operating profit (adjusted EBITDA) of about €2.6 billion.


In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment. Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.