December 7, 2009

LSU has received a $75,000 gift from BP America to the Forever LSU Campaign to benefit the College of Engineering. Included in BP's donation is a new BP Solar-Powered Buggy to be used for K-12 outreach programs as well as mechanical and electrical engineering LSU student education.

"BP's philanthropy has made an immediate impact by providing state-of-the-art resources for student success at LSU," stated Rick Koubek, dean, College of Engineering. "We continue to enjoy a strong partnership with BP in supporting LSU Engineering student enhancement activities and community engagement efforts."

Presenting the BP Buggy and additional $65,000 to be used for enhanced global awareness initiatives for LSU engineering students were Bob Fryar, CEO, Angola business unit and LSU petroleum engineering alumnus; Luis Aguillar, operations engineer and LSU chemical engineering alumnus; Keith Seilhan, operations director, Gulf of Mexico and LSU mechanical engineering alumnus; and Karl Connor, government affairs director for Ark., La., and Miss.. Koubek noted that, "these LSU engineering alumni from BP showcase the strength and dedication of our alumni to give back to the College and advance our program."

"Supporting quality engineering programs like those at LSU is important for maintaining a steady supply of bright minds to our industry," said Bob Fryar. "These students are the backbone of our industry and will be developing and applying the technologies of tomorrow that will enable us to continue our successful track record of providing energy to America."

The solar-powered, all electric buggy is a modified Bad Boy standard All Terrain Vehicle. This unique buggy utilizes solar panels mounted on the roof to charge the power cells. The buggy represents a sustainable form of energy and mobility and has a 30 horsepower motor, providing more than 170 footpounds of tourque. The vehicle has room for four passengers, with a load capacity of 880 pounds, and can pull a small trailer loaded with 1,500 pounds. Only for off-road useage, it has a maximum speed of 22 miles per hour.

BP is one of the world's largest energy companies, providing its customers with fuel for transportation and energy for heat and light. BP's family of brands includes am/pm, ARCO, BP and Castrol. BP is the leading producer of oil and natural gas in the United States, and the largest investor in U.S. energy development, including major investments to increase existing energy sources, extend energy supplies and develop new low-carbon technologies.

Support for the LSU College of Engineering, like that shown by BP, helps the College of Engineering move closer to its Forever LSU Campaign goal of attaining $100 million in support for the college by the end of the year 2010. Forever LSU is a historic fundraising effort which will generate more than $750 million in support for LSU, helping LSU maintain its Tier 1 status among American universities. To find out how you can become involved, visit or


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Article by Mimi LaValle, LSU College of Engineering, 225-578-5706,


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