LU and ExxonMobil set the tone for future collaborations

Neighbors with a mutual goal have vowed to continue their relationship. Lamar University and ExxonMobil discussed their long-standing commitment to partner for the benefit of STEM careers.

ExxonMobil Luncheon
President Ken Evans welcomes Refinery Plant Manager Rozena Dendy

Dr. Ken Evans, president of Lamar University and Dr. Brian Craig, dean of the College of Engineering at LU, recently welcomed Rozena Dendy, ExxonMobil Beaumont’s new refinery plant manager, to the LU campus for the first time.

Evans welcomed Dendy to Lamar University by highlighting LU’s attributes, including record enrollment and a demographic that includes a 60% first-generation student population.

“We are one of the top institutions in the state as far as percentage improvement in our funding formula,” Evans said. “Additionally, we were positioned for the unfortunate occurrence of the pandemic with our online presence.”

The leaders of the two entities, located within two miles of each other across MLK Blvd., also discussed successful collaborations including ExxonMobil sponsorship of the LU Senior Design Symposium, undergraduate research, Discover Engineering and the Student Engineering Council Banquet.

“The Lamar University and ExxonMobil relationship is critical for improving the job-readiness of our engineering students,” Craig said. “Students gain real-world, practical experience through internships and co-operative work programs with ExxonMobil that make them the top candidates for potential employment at ExxonMobil. It’s a win-win.”

Since 2015, ExxonMobil and its employees have contributed more than $1.3 million to Lamar University through charitable contributions and its educational matching gift program. In 2020, ExxonMobil gave $25k to Lamar University to establish a N.E.S.T learning environment at Amelia Elementary School.

“We want to continue to be a strong community partner and invest in the future of the Beaumont community,” Dendy said. “We look forward to continuing to strengthen our relationship with Lamar University, as well as our relationship with our Beaumont Independent School District partner schools.”

“We see ourselves as a company that is about advancing the lives of everyone around us.”
Each year, ExxonMobil and its employees accumulate hundreds of hours volunteering with Lamar University students, through activities such as resume reviews and mock interview sessions. ExxonMobil employee resource groups focus on providing these resources to the National Society of Black Engineers, Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers and the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers.

ExxonMobil Tour
Dean Brian Craig gives a tour of the College of Engineering.

Additionally, ExxonMobil is a proud sponsor of Lamar University athletics, has previously funded LU’s Engineering Ambassadors and sponsors the summer camp, Lamar Introduction to Engineering or L.I.T.E., for local middle school students.

“In the future, we can become more embedded with each other in meaningful ways that enhance the educational experience of our students, give our faculty practical experience and likewise benefit you,” said Evans. “To me that is where the best partnerships are developed. We mutually invest assets in each other and those are the kind of partnerships that have endearing qualities.”