Chevron donates $2 million to LSU’s College of Engineering

Chevron committed $2 million Wednesday to LSU in support of an ongoing renovation of Patrick F. Taylor Hall, which houses the university’s College of Engineering. The company also announced it will donate an additional $700,000 to LSU’s College of Science.

Chevron’s donation will go toward establishing an engineering student academic support center and a petroleum engineering teaching laboratory.

The donation will be added to LSU’s “Breaking New Ground” campaign.

The goal is to turn the existing 36-year-old building into a 21st-century engineering education complex to train the next generation of students.

Gov. Bobby Jindal, whose father and wife are engineers, has thrown his support behind the project, which he said should help LSU reach “its full potential” as a nationally recognized research institution.

The state Legislature in June approved $50 million in funding for the renovation with the understanding that LSU would finance the rest of the construction with $50 million in matching funds.

LSU has so far raised about $30 million, including $2 million in July from the family of Roy O. Martin and RoyOMartin, an Alexandria-based lumber, timber and land company, and a $15 million donation from Phyllis M. Taylor, chairwoman of the Patrick F. Taylor Foundation, which supports educational projects, military and law enforcement causes and other nonprofits in the state.

In a state currently in the midst of a manufacturing boom, the renovation is supposed to be a crucial step to help the state meet the demand for job-ready engineering graduates.

“Chevron is proud to join the College of Engineering’s efforts to expand engineering education and produce exceptional graduates,” Chevron North America Gulf of Mexico Vice President Warner Williams said in a prepared statement. “We believe that the new space and the advanced laboratory will enable the achievement of academic excellence in petroleum engineering and countless other disciplines.”