Awarded through the Hildebrand Foundation, the gift will support initiatives and investments in new teaching and research technologies at the school's Department of Petroleum and Geosystems, including additional academic-industry partnerships focused on advances in technology and the development of future leaders in the energy industry. In recognition of the gift, the university will name the department the Hildebrand Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering.
The founder, chair, and CEO of Hilcorp Energy Company, Jeffery Hildebrand received a master's degree in petroleum engineering and bachelor's degree in geology from UT Austin. Currently vice chair of the University of Texas System Board of Regents, Hildebrand was named a distinguished engineering graduate of the Cockrell School in 2005, where he serves on the advisory board, and a distinguished alumnus of the Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering in 2013. Mindy Hildebrand, who received a bachelor's degree in management from the McCombs School of Business, serves on that school's advisory board and the university development board.
"Regent Jeff Hildebrand and Mindy Hildebrand have a very deep connection to our university that makes this gift so special," said UT Austin president Gregory L. Fenves. "This $25 million is a remarkable investment in the future of the Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering, the Cockrell School of Engineering, and the study and exploration of new energy solutions. It will provide significant resources for student and faculty innovation, along with cutting-edge teaching and research related to the oil and gas industry."