Doosan Bobcat and Mortenson have announced significant philanthropic investments to launch fundraising efforts toward a new Center for Engineering and Computational Sciences at NDSU.
The gifts were revealed at a special event hosted by the NDSU Foundation on Friday, Oct. 27, 2023, which was attended by alumni, friends, state legislators, and university faculty, staff and students.
Doosan Bobcat and Mortenson have each pledged $5 million to boost early fundraising momentum and inspire others to get involved in the project that will transform NDSU’s College of Engineering.
“We are very pleased to be a lead investor in the new Center for Engineering and Computational Sciences that will establish a new benchmark in higher education throughout the region,” Dan Johnson, chief executive officer at Mortenson and an NDSU alumnus in construction management, said. “Engineers are a critical aspect of our workforce, and this new Center will attract and retain both students and faculty well into the future.”
Bobcat Company is one of the largest employers of NDSU graduates in North Dakota. More than 55% of its engineering staff are NDSU alumni, and 37% of its non-engineering hires are NDSU graduates.
“As a company built on decades of engineering advancements, Bobcat is committed to investing in and developing the talent pool that will shape the next century of innovation,” Mike Ballweber, president of Doosan Bobcat North America, said. “We are proud to support NDSU as they educate future engineers who are helping us transform how the world runs jobsites, builds cities, and thinks about a sustainable future.”
These dual gifts represent a landmark moment in the College of Engineering’s history and provide critical leadership gift support needed to pursue raising up to $30 million for the project. In total, $14.5 million has been raised to date. The private funds will be used to match the North Dakota Legislature’s appropriation of $59 million for the new Center. Renderings and preliminary floor plans were also unveiled at the celebration.
“We are immensely grateful to Doosan Bobcat and Mortenson, along with other philanthropic gifts from our alumni and industry partners, for their leadership and inspiration to kick off fundraising efforts,” John Glover, president and chief executive officer of the NDSU Foundation, said. “But we’re not finished yet. This moment is a call to action for all those that care about the future of NDSU and its College of Engineering to join our leadership benefactors by supporting this cutting-edge facility.”
The new Center will put engineering “on display” at NDSU, advancing hands-on, interdisciplinary engineering and computational sciences curriculum, research, and learning to develop technical talent for tomorrow’s workforce needs. The College of Engineering has not had a major expansion or transformation of its facilities since the $1.6 million Ehly Hall addition in 1999, with most of the College’s current buildings being constructed in the 1960s.
“The impact of these leadership investments will be felt across the entire NDSU community,” NDSU President Dave Cook said. “The College of Engineering plays a critical role in the state by educating the next generation of workforce, conducting research that matters to our economy, and engaging with communities to work on problems and identify solutions that advance our society. We are so grateful to Doosan Bobcat and Mortenson, as well as all other early benefactors, for their leadership investments.”
“The NDSU College of Engineering is committed to utilizing these generous investments to push the boundaries of what is possible in engineering education and facilities,” Alan Kallmeyer, interim dean of the College of Engineering, said. “The profound impact of these gifts will be seen in the form of innovative space utilization in teaching and research that transform the student experience and ultimately produce the best engineers and scientists for our state and region.”
NDSU and the NDSU Foundation are excited to embark on this journey towards a brighter future for the College of Engineering, and we invite you to join us in this transformative endeavor. Your support will make a profound impact, fueling innovation and shaping the next generation of engineers and innovators. Together, we can build a stronger, more vibrant College of Engineering that will continue to drive progress and change the world.