February 19, 2009

On February 19, 2009, ExxonMobil and the College of Engineering’s (CoE) Office for Diversity hosted the ExxonMobil Diversity in Engineering Scholars Reception. ExxonMobil’s renewed $250,000 scholarship program was established to encourage academically talented, underrepresented undergraduate students to pursue degrees in engineering. The scholarship can award up to $5,000 annually to state and non-state residents. ExxonMobil provides mentors to support and improve a student’s chance of success during the scholar’s undergraduate years. The ExxonMobil Diversity in Engineering Scholarship reflects the spirit, dedication and innovation that the ExxonMobil Company brings to the field of engineering.

“This is a continuation of a successful partnership with LSU to stimulate interest in science, math and technology,” said Del Dugas, capital investment planner with ExxonMobil. “The scholars are quite impressive, and we look forward to serving as engineering mentors.”

“ExxonMobil has been a true partner and supporter of the Minority Engineering program,” said Julie Harris, program manager. “The renewal of the ExxonMobil Scholars program will continue to help LSU advance engineering through academic excellence and scholarship.”

Winners of the ExxonMobil Diversity in Engineering Scholarship for 2009 are: Jerrad Rolon, Ta’Ryan Lloyd, Awonu Lekia, Jarrod Living, Crystal Osejo, Taylor James-Lightner, Jamol Brown, Ryan Pazdera, Michael Milton, Neil Bourda and Renika Bradley.

"Being a part of the ExxonMobil Scholars program is a great opportunity for me. I will have a mentor to give me first-hand information on industry practices. The seminars will help me grow into a successful petroleum engineer. Also, this relationship could possibly lead to future employment at ExxonMobil, so I am very excited about this opportunity," said Neil Bourda, a sophomore scholar.

The ExxonMobil Diversity in Engineering Scholarship represents only a part of ExxonMobil’s overall support of LSU. In May 2008, the ExxonMobil Foundation’s Matching Gift Program presented a check to LSU in the amount of $1,119,724 which represents ExxonMobil’s 3 to 1 match of funds donated to LSU by ExxonMobil employees and retirees. With this gift, LSU became the first university in the world to receive more than $1 million in matching funds from ExxonMobil in one calendar year. ExxonMobil has been an integral part of advancing and sustaining the quality of education at LSU.

Support for the Office for Diversity, like that shown by ExxonMobil, helps CoE move closer to its Forever LSU Campaign goal. The Office for Diversity is included in the College’s development effort, with a goal of attaining $10 million in support for LSU by the end of the year 2010. To find out how you can become involved, visit http://diversity.eng.lsu.edu/.

Article by Akilah Taylor, LSU College of Engineering, 225-578-0092, ataylor1@lsu.edu

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