Missouri S&T receives $1 million gift from the Sunderland Foundation to complete new lab

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On September 10, 2020

The expansion of Missouri S&T’s Clayco Advanced Construction and Materials Laboratory added 14,600 square feet of new space for infrastructure research. Photo by Terry Barner/Missouri S&T

Missouri University of Science and Technology has received a $1 million gift from the Sunderland Foundation to complete construction of the Clayco Advanced Construction and Materials Laboratory in Butler-Carlton Civil Engineering Hall. The foundation also supported the project with a $100,000 gift in 2016.

“We are deeply grateful for the Sunderland Foundation’s investment in this research and teaching lab,” says Missouri S&T Chancellor Mo Dehghani. “The foundation’s partnership has made a difference on our campus for many years. This gift will support research on next-generation construction materials and methods with the potential to transform how we design and build our future as a nation.”

The Sunderland Foundation was established in 1945 by Lester T. Sunderland, who served as president of the Ash Grove Cement Co. for 33 years. The foundation’s focus on funding brick and mortar projects reflects the heritage of the cement company.

“Since its inception, the foundation has focused on supporting projects in higher education, health care, youth-serving organizations, and civic and cultural areas of interest,” said President and Chief Operating Officer Randy Vance. “By supporting these types of construction and special interest projects, the Sunderland Foundation fosters a stronger, safer and more vibrant future for the communities we serve.  The Advanced Construction and Materials Laboratory project is an important undertaking that we are pleased to support.”

The lab expands the existing high bay structures lab in Butler-Carlton Civil Engineering Hall with 14,600 square feet of new space for research on sustainable, cost-effective, and green solutions to our nation’s infrastructure challenges. More than 35 pieces of Center for Infrastructure Engineering Studies (CIES) testing equipment previously located in buildings across campus have been consolidated at the new research lab.

Naming donor Clayco Inc. and ARCO Construction Co. are also major donors to the lab, along with the University of Missouri System, S&T’s College of Engineering and Computing, and private charitable gifts including a bequest from civil engineering alumnus James A. Heidman.

For more information on the lab, contact Joel Burken, curators’ distinguished professor and chair of civil, architectural and environmental engineering, at burken@mst.edu or 573-341-6547. For more information on corporate and foundation giving, contact Krystal Hull, senior development officer, corporations and foundations, at krystal.hull@mst.edu or 573-341-6596.

About Missouri University of Science and Technology

Founded in 1870 as the University of Missouri School of Mines and Metallurgy, Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) is a STEM-focused research university of over 8,000 students and part of the four-campus University of Missouri System. Located in Rolla, Missouri, Missouri S&T offers 99 different degree programs in 40 areas of study, including engineering, the sciences, business and information technology, the humanities, and the liberal arts. Missouri S&T is known globally and is highly ranked for providing a high return on tuition investment, exceptional career opportunities for graduates, and an emphasis on applied, hands-on learning through student design teams and cooperative education and internship opportunities. For more information about Missouri S&T, visit www.mst.edu.

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