TU Announces Major Gift for Petroleum Engineering

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

TU and the College of Engineering and Natural Sciences proudly announce the naming of the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering and the creation of two endowments that will propel the program to new heights.

Jeffrey J. McDougall, President and founder of Oklahoma City-based JMA Energy Company, on Oct. 13 announced his strategic investment in the Petroleum Engineering program in the College of Engineering and Natural Science.

McDougall's gift will underwrite a director to lead the school and engage stakeholders. It also will establish the Dr. Kermit Brown Endowment Fund to support faculty through salary supplements, research incentives, and future initiatives to advance the school. To honor his support, the university has renamed the program the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering.

"My gift to TU represents not only funding, but also an ongoing relationship," said McDougall, a 1984 alumnus from the petroleum engineering program. "In my experience, the human element has always been the key to success, and I'm excited about working to help align people and support around the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering."

TU President Steadman Upham said McDougall has been an adviser, mentor and advocate for the petroleum engineering program that now bears his name.

"Jeff's dramatic success with JMA Energy illustrates his tenacity and his ability to rally talented people around a mission. We are confident that his talents will bring many advantages to our petroleum engineering enterprise, and we look forward to partnering with him to shape the next century of engineering excellence at The University of Tulsa," Upham said.

TU has long been recognized as one of the nation's leaders in petroleum engineering education and research. Through its innovative partnerships with industry and its tradition of world-class faculty, petroleum engineering is one of TU's flagship programs and has been internationally recognized almost since the day oil was first discovered beneath the productive Oklahoma soil.

The gift will allow for the creation of two endowments to provide leadership and support for petroleum engineering education, namely:

  • An endowment to fund a director for the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering. The director will provide leadership for the program and serve as an advocate with the school's various stakeholders, including students, faculty, university administration, alumni, donors, and industry. The director will serve as a member of the faculty, and the search is currently under way to fill the position.
  • The Dr. Kermit Brown Endowment Fund to support the school's faculty. Earnings from the endowment will be used to supplement faculty salaries, incentivize new research, and fund future key initiatives to advance the school. The endowment fund is named to honor the late Kermit Brown, the legendary petroleum engineering faculty member who mentored several generations of TU students, including Mr. McDougall.

As a part of the program's new direction, the school is creating two advisory bodies to engage the school with stakeholders. Alongside the existing Industry Advisory Board, the school will add a Patrons Board and an Executive Committee. The Patrons Board will include select top-level corporate partners who will be able to closely interact with the school, faculty, and students. The Executive Committee will feature seven to nine experienced individuals who will advise and facilitate the work of the other groups.

This announcement marks a new era for The University of Tulsa as it reaffirms its commitment to a world-leading petroleum engineering program. With new resources and new energy, the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering will produce the human talent and industry knowledge to address America's energy needs well into the future.

About Jeffrey J. McDougall

Jeffrey J. McDougall (BS '84) is President and principal owner of JMA Energy Company and its affiliates headquartered in Oklahoma City. Founded in 1986, JMA Energy Company is a leader among Oklahoma's independent oil and gas companies. Prior to founding JMA, Mr. McDougall worked as a Petroleum Engineer for Triad Drilling Company and as a consulting Petroleum Engineer.

Mr. McDougall is an active member of the Oklahoma Independent Petroleum Association (OIPA) and serves as a member of its Board of Directors and Executive Committee. He also currently holds the position of President of the Wildcatters Club of Oklahoma. Previous positions with OIPA include Treasurer and Co-Chairman to its Federal Issues Committee. In 2005, he provided testimony before the United States Senate - Environment and Public Works Committee concerning producer issues.

Mr. McDougall earned his bachelor's degree in Petroleum Engineering from The University of Tulsa, where he currently serves on its Board of Trustees. He also serves on the Board of Directors for both Special Care, Inc. and the Harold Hamm Oklahoma Diabetes Center in Oklahoma City.

Stephenson Hall – The future home for the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering

The university soon expects to start construction on Stephenson Hall, which will serve as the new home for both the McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering and TU's Department of Mechanical Engineering. The $16 million project will provide students with 16 integrated classrooms, as well as office and conference space for 34 faculty and graduate students. Carefully planned to facilitate teaching and research, the building includes state-of-the-art laboratories serving both programs. The lead gift for the 38,000-square-foot building was provided by former chairman and CEO of Vintage Petroleum, Charles Stephenson and his wife, Peggy.  The 18-month construction project is expected to begin in 2011.

In addition to Stephenson Hall, construction is currently underway on J. Newton Rayzor Hall, which will serve as the future home to computer science and electrical engineering. Adjacent to both new buildings, the new Samson Plaza will provide an outdoor gathering space that will connect the university's engineering buildings and the Allen Chapman Activity Center.

The McDougall School of Petroleum Engineering