W.M. Keck Foundation donated $20 million to Chapman University for a new center for science and engineering, which would be the largest and most expensive building on campus, the institutions announced last week.

The gift from the downtown foundation led the university in Orange to name its $130 million building the Keck Center for Science and Engineering.

The new donation follows $2.5 million in Keck support for Chapman over the past decade. The charitable institution was founded in 1954 by William Myron Keck, founder of the Superior Oil Co. Since its inception, the nonprofit said it has buttressed pioneering discoveries in science, engineering and medical research.

The 140,000-square-foot center, to serve as home for the Schmid College of Science and Technology and a new Fowler School of Engineering, is slated to open in the fall of next year.

Keck, with assets of $1.1 billion, has put its name on university science and medical centers across Southern California, including the Keck School of Medicine at USC, Keck Institute of Space Studies at Caltech and Keck Graduate Institute of Applied Life Sciences at Claremont Colleges.

– Dana Bartholomew

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