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Midship Pipeline gift allows for new investments in advanced technology


Left to right: OK Senator Ron Justice, OK Secretary of State Chris Benge, USAO President John Feaver and Midship's Matt Barr with the $20,000 check

Midship Pipeline gift allows for new investments in advanced technology

 

Thanks to a generous $20,000 grant from Midship Pipeline Company, the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma is greatly expanding its STEM-focused MakerSpace in Nash Library. A formal check presentation ceremony was Oct. 10 at 9 a.m. in Nash that featured USAO President John Feaver, representatives from Midship, Chris Benge, chief of staff for Governor Mary Fallin, and other local officials.

The funds will allow USAO to purchase a second 3D printer; a laser cutter so students can fabricate parts from many types of material; 10 Pi-Tops, special laptops that help users learn to code, create and invent; and 10 Yogibo pod chairs, high-quality beanbag chairs that are well-suited to working with laptops and reading.

These new purchases will complement the 3D printer and Raspberry Pi computers that are already housed in Nash Library. The renovated space will be fully operational for the Spring 2019 term.

In line with the university’s interdisciplinary mission, the MakerSpace will be available to students from any major, as well as faculty and staff, so that everyone can get experience working with these cutting-edge technologies. University officials are excited to see what creative uses that USAO students outside of the STEM majors can find for the new equipment.

“This space will completely change how all of our students approach the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics by increasing their access to hands-on ways of planning, researching, building and creating,” said Kelly Brown, vice president for library and information services. “For example, while biology students might model various factors affecting an ecosystem, art majors could create digital or 3D pieces, business majors could create logos and marketing materials, and theatre arts majors could create sets and design costumes.”

The Midship Project is a natural gas pipeline connecting new gas production in the Anadarko Basin to growing Gulf Coast and southeastern markets via deliveries to existing pipelines. When complete, the approximately 200-mile pipeline will run through eight western Oklahoma counties. Through their STEM community grant program, Midship has donated $160,000 overall to eight schools in these counties. Institutions submitted specific plans for review and gifts were tailored to each school’s needs.

“Midship is honored to make this donation to USAO,” said Matt Barr, director of government and public affairs. “We hope this gift inspires Oklahoma students and aids in their preparation for jobs in STEM-related industries, helping open future opportunities so they can grow, thrive and reach their full potential. Midship wants to thank the school and its leadership for their efforts in helping us identify where the gift can best be utilized.”

For more information, contact Brown at 405-574-1262 or kbrown@usao.edu