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Riverside, Calif. (September 1, 2015) – A $250,000 grant from the W. M. Keck Foundation will help fund hands-on experiences in the field of sustainability and health technologies for the chemical engineering department at California Baptist University's Gordon and Jill Bourns College of Engineering.

Dr. Mark Anklam, chemical engineering chair and professor, said a large portion of the funds have already been invested in purchasing new equipment to create additional chemical engineering labs.

These labs will allow students to work on sustainable technology projects such as CO2 removal, reverse osmosis, fuel cells technology and purifying water, he said.  

Anklam said today's employers are very environmentally conscience. Chemical engineers must learn to design and operate processes with minimal side effects.

"Students will understand how to transform materials and chemicals for the benefit of humanity," Anklam said.  "They will see engineering applications that can positively impact the environment and can also improve the quality of life for others."

Some of the new labs are scheduled for introduction in the fall semester.

Stephen Dueck, a chemical engineering junior, interned during the summer for CBU's chemical engineering department and helped install new equipment.

"It's fascinating to go from textbook knowledge to seeing how different chemicals interact with each other through this equipment," he said. "I already suggested switching out some chemicals a manual suggested for some more environmentally safe ones that I learned about in one of my classes."

Dr. Mario Oyanader, associate professor of chemical engineering, expressed enthusiasm for the new equipment.

"It's exciting to be a part of a program that is getting out-of-the-box equipment that is up-to-date on the latest technology being used in industry," he said.