Part of MGM Resorts’ Longstanding Commitment to Advance Public Education Through Philanthropic Pillars

L to R: City of Yonkers Backpack Drive, Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts employees with Bronx Borough President Vanessa Gibson. (Photo Credit: Tatiana Diaz, Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts)


Yonkers, NY -- Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts (‘Empire City’) announced a donation of more than 1,000 backpacks to Westchester and Bronx students to support educational equity for the new school year. The backpack donation is part of Empire City’s ongoing commitment to supporting public educational programs in local communities, one of four philanthropic pillars that make up MGM Resorts’ enterprise-wide philanthropic initiative, “Focused on What Matters.”  


MGM Resorts acquired Empire City Casino in January 2019 and has continued its commitment to corporate social responsibility long associated with the entertainment destination. Charitable organizations throughout the region have been the recipients of hundreds of thousands of dollars in grants and in-kind donations from the company, along with employee volunteer hours. 


“Academic success in the new school year is partly dependent on preparation and ensuring students have the needed supplies to give them a strong start is critical,” said Taryn Duffy, vice president of public affairs for MGM Resorts Northeast Group.


As a result of inflation, families with children of elementary to high school ages are spending an average of $890.07 per student this year, according to the National Retail Federation


Empire City expanded its backpack donation this year to support more students in Yonkers, Mount Vernon and the Bronx. Though Empire City sits within Westchester County borders, it is located less than two miles from the borough of the Bronx, where nearly a third of its workforce resides. Empire City partnered with various nonprofit organizations and community stakeholders who distributed the backpacks to students.  


“As a resident of Yonkers and an alumni of Yonkers Public Schools, it brings me such pride and joy to see our community come together to support our Yonkers Public School students,” said Stefanie Felidi, Principal at Yonkers Early Childhood Academy. “With the cost of living increasing, we know that purchasing school supplies poses a financial challenge to many of our students and families. Book bags are an essential item that transports materials to and from school bridging the home school connection.” 

Public education programs implemented by nonprofit organizations throughout the region have received funding from Empire City to support educational advancement opportunities. The Youth Community Outreach Program (“Y-COP”) of Mount Vernon, a certified childcare provider which helps provide families with equitable access to much-needed childcare and educational programs, received grant funding to expand after-school and summer programs for local area families. Other nonprofit organizations that received support from Empire City to implement area education programs include ArtsWestchester, Untermyer Performing Arts Council, United Way of Westchester & Putnam, the Bronx Chamber of Commerce Foundation and others. 


Beyond its philanthropic giving to support education, more than half of Empire City’s gross gaming revenue is directed to the New York State education fund. In its 17 years of operating as a casino, Empire City has  generated more than $4.6 billion for state education, accounting for nearly $13 billion of all racinos around New York State combined.


For more information on Empire City and upcoming events, please visit




About Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts

Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts is one of the largest entertainment and gaming destinations in the northeast. Featuring nearly 4,700 of the hottest slots, electronic three card poker, blackjack, craps, roulette, baccarat and sic bo table games, Empire City Casino also offers guests year-round harness racing and international simulcasting; live entertainment including the best party, tribute, and Latin bands; New York’s hottest DJ’s, and more. A selection of dining options will satisfy even the most discerning palate with fan-favorite fare at The Pub, and convenient delicious options at Lil’ Cocina and the Big Kitchen International Food Court. Visit Empire City Casino by MGM Resorts located at 810 Yonkers Avenue (off I-87 at Central Avenue) Yonkers, NY, Westchester County, open seven days a week from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. Empire City Casino is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of MGM Resorts International (NYSE: MGM). For more information, visit or call 914.968.4200. 


 About MGM Resorts International MGM Resorts 

International (NYSE: MGM) is an S&P 500® global entertainment company with national and international locations featuring best-in-class hotels and casinos, state-of-the-art meetings and conference spaces, incredible live and theatrical entertainment experiences, and an extensive array of restaurant, nightlife and retail offerings. MGM Resorts creates immersive, iconic experiences through its suite of Las Vegas-inspired brands. The MGM Resorts portfolio encompasses 31 unique hotel and gaming destinations globally, including some of the most recognizable resort brands in the industry. The Company’s 50/50 venture, BetMGM, LLC, offers U.S. sports betting and online gaming through market-leading brands, including BetMGM and partypoker. The Company is currently pursuing targeted expansion in Asia through the integrated resort opportunity in Japan. Through its “Focused on What Matters: Embracing Humanity and Protecting the Planet” philosophy, MGM Resorts commits to creating a more sustainable future, while striving to make a bigger difference in the lives of its employees, guests, and in the communities where it operates. For more information, please visit us at Please also connect with us @MGMResortsIntl on Twitter as well as Facebook and Instagram. 


Media Contacts:    

Maria Cray,, (508) 245-6564

Josh Knoller,, (201) 294-9586