BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – One of the biggest oil companies in the world is making a multi-million dollar donation to LSU.

LSU and Shell are coming together to create the university’s new LSU Institute for Energy Innovation. Shell’s 27.5 million dollar donation will help get the project off the ground. The new institute will focus on reliable, affordable, and environmentally-responsible energy.

“Now there is not a single solution to achieve this goal. So we are investing in multiple technology pathways. These include investing in energy efficiency technologies,” said Selda Gunsel, president of Shell Global Solutions US.

Most of that donation will go toward launching the institute, it’s the university’s largest gift from a for-profit company. About two-and-a-half million will go toward the construction of LSU’s Our Lady of the Lake Interdisciplinary Science Building. Shell said this project will help the entire country tackle big climate issues.

“So we can tackle the world’s greatest technology challenges. Technology challenges related to climate change, sustainability and decarbonization,” said Gunsel.

The project also sets aside money to make diverse hires.

“Nearly one-quarter of Shell’s gift will support diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives, especially around the workforce development, faculty recruitment and student support with the energy industry,” said LSU President Dr. William Tate.

They say the next step is looking for candidates and then the real work begins. Their first hire, finding the right executive director to lead the new program.