News > Press Releases
Feb 03, 2014
– More Than 450 Individual, Corporate Donors Pledged $52.5 Million –
BATON ROUGE – Today, Governor Bobby Jindal and LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander announced that the LSU College of Engineering has finished a record breaking capital campaign to expand LSU’s engineering college by raising $52.5 million in private funds. This fulfills the College of Engineering’s commitment to match $50 million in state capital outlay funds to renovate Patrick F. Taylor Hall and construct a new chemical engineering addition. In addition to the original $50 million match from the state, Governor Jindal announced that the state would also be matching dollar for dollar funding that exceeds the initial $50 million goal in private donations.
In October 2012, Governor Jindal announced a $100 million public-private partnership to renovate and expand Patrick F. Taylor Hall at LSU to create a new state-of-the-art engineering education complex. The College of Engineering’s campaign to raise private funds was launched in January 2013 and finished three months ahead of schedule.
More than 450 individual and corporate donors pledged $52.5 million in private funds. The College of Engineering publicly launched the campaign with a $15 million gift from Phyllis Taylor. Twenty-two companies, including Dow, RoyOMartin, Entergy, BASF and Turner Industries, supported the fundraising effort with pledges totaling $22 million. Twenty of the gifts received were for $1 million dollars or more. According to LSU, this capital campaign is the most successful, short-term fundraising effort in the history of the university.
Governor Jindal said, “We are grateful for the hundreds of donors who stepped up to the plate to make this partnership a reality. Experts say they have never seen an industrial expansion like the one currently under way in our state, but they also say we are going to need to train and attract even more people to fill the demand for all the jobs coming to Louisiana. That’s why we are laser focused on making sure we have the tools to prepare our students so they can fill the jobs in the pipeline. This partnership will help accomplish that goal.”
LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander “Ensuring we graduate the top students for the future starts at our flagship university. This engineering expansion will attract the best and brightest students, researchers and industry partnerships from all over the world. The success of this fundraising effort is a testament to the impact of LSU alumni and corporate investment in the future of LSU.”
“This is one of the great moments in the history of LSU's College of Engineering,” said LSU College of Engineering Dean Rick Koubek. “A moment defined by the generosity and support of a remarkable group of donors along with the commitment from Governor Jindal and the state. The momentum of their investment will position the college to take a leading part in securing Louisiana's position as a national leader in research and education.”
Prior to the construction of the new business school complex, the LSU College of Engineering had access to about 168,000 square feet in Taylor Hall. With the renovation of Taylor Hall, as well as the addition of a new annex dedicated to chemical engineering, the total amount of first-class academic space for the LSU College of Engineering will now grow to more than 350,000 square feet.
The new and renovated engineering complex will include expanded, modern laboratory space for teaching as well as translational research, enhanced and expanded space for student services, updated graduate student space, an academic support center, and dedicated capstone project space and other multi-disciplinary space for student projects. Construction is slated to begin in the fall of 2014, with an estimated completion scheduled for fall 2017.
Governor Jindal said workforce estimates published by the Louisiana Workforce Commission and the Louisiana Board of Regents indicate that the state will need to increase engineering and construction management graduates statewide by at least 30 percent per year to meet the current demand from businesses. However, Governor Jindal said those growth numbers don’t fully take into more recent and anticipated economic development announcements that will require engineer, construction management and computer science graduates. Governor Jindal said the College of Engineering is on its way to help meet this demand. In 2013, it became the largest academic college in the LSU System and the fifth fastest growing engineering college in the nation.
“Improved teaching and research spaces, an enhanced senior design capstone space and engineering projects on display will inspire and reinforce a sense of pride and motivation for students,” said Madison Longwell, first year Biological Engineering student. “LSU is “breaking new ground! With improved recruiting, facilities, and student preparedness, the LSU College of Engineering will have a positive impact on the State of Louisiana, and the nation as a whole.”