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Oregon State University announced today that Jin-Hsun (Jensen) Hwang, CEO of nvidiaand Lori Huang donated $50 million to the school to build a new innovation complex on campus.
The university also raised a total of $100 million in gifts to launch what would eventually be a $200 million research and education center with one of the most powerful supercomputers in the country.
The center will conduct research in artificial intelligence, materials science, and robotics to solve global challenges in areas such as climate science, ocean science, sustainability, and water resources.
The complex will also support OSU’s research and teaching in support of the broader semiconductor and technology industry in Oregon and beyond. Jensen Huang is the founder and CEO of Nvidia, and he and his wife, Laurie, are alumni of Oregon State University.
“We are thrilled with this extraordinary philanthropic and commitment to advancing research discovery and problem solving,” Jayathi Murthy, president of Ohio State University, said in a statement.
Murthy said the three-story, 150,000-square-foot center is being designed and expected to open at the school in Corvallis, Oregon, in 2025.
Murthy said the center is part of Oregon’s efforts to promote diversity, equity and inclusion in STEM education and research. Al Huang graduated from high schools in Oregon and met while graduating from the College of Engineering at Oregon State University.
“We discovered our love for computer science and engineering at Ohio State University. We hope this gift will help inspire future generations of students to also fall in love with technology and its ability to change the world.”
“Artificial intelligence is the most transformative technology of our time,” they added. “To harness this power, engineering students need access to a supercomputer, a time machine, to speed up their research. This new artificial intelligence-powered supercomputer will enable students and researchers at Ohio State University to make very important advances in climate science, ocean science, and materials science, robotics, and other fields.”
The center will contain an Nvidia supercomputer to support the faculty in handling highly complex and challenging computational problems. The OSU supercomputer – powered by Nvidia CPUs, GPUs and networking – is expected to be among the world’s fastest supercomputers, powerful enough to train the largest artificial intelligence models and run complex dual-digital simulations. The complex will also have a state-of-the-art clean room and other specialized research facilities.
During the 2023 Oregon legislative session, Oregon State University will request $75 million in state-paid bonds to match charitable and university contributions to the Collaborative Innovation Pool.
The complex will contain the latest supercomputers that include the NVIDIA DGX SuperPOD and OVX SuperPOD systems. The water used to cool it will help heat more than 500,000 square feet of building space on the Ohio State University campus in Corvallis.
The CEO and CEO of the OSU Foundation, Sean Scoville, praised Huangs’ charitable work.
“Lori and Jane Husson are exceptional Oregon alumni and true philanthropists,” Scoville said. “They bring so much to the table. Every project they are involved in is improved because of their contributions, and Ohio State University is the biggest beneficiary of their experience and active participation. It is a pleasure and an honor to work with them.”
The Huangs gift was announced when the OSU Foundation launched its second university-wide fundraising and engagement campaign.
The university has received four gifts of $25 million or more for the campaign so far. In 2021, the OSU Foundation announced an anonymous gift of $50 million to support the completion of Reser Stadium. In 2018, the university received its first $50 million gift, a contribution from alumnus Gary Carlson to name the Gary R. Carlson College of Veterinary Medicine.
Lori Huang is president of the Jen-Hsun and Lori Huang Foundation, which supports higher education, public health, and STEM initiatives across the United States, along with community organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area.
The Huang Foundation previously awarded $5 million to build a cancer research laboratory at Oregon State University, and $30 million to the Jane Huang Huang Engineering Center at Stanford University. Hwang joined Melinda Gates in supporting AI4ALL, a national non-profit organization working to increase diversity and inclusion in artificial intelligence. They’ve also given major educational scholarships to Johns Hopkins University and City Year San Jose. Laurie graduated from Oregon State University in 1985 with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering (BSEE). Huang has two children.
Oregon has more than 34,000 students.
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