McMaster gets $1M for MBA campus

June 21, 2010   by PLANT STAFF

McMaster University’s Burlington campus gets $1 million from the Marinucci Family Foundation. Seated in the Marinucci Family Auditorium (L-R) are Tracy Marinucci, wife of John Marinucci, who are joined by McMaster University president Peter George.

Photo: McMaster University

HAMILTON, Ont: Two Ontario universities on opposite sides of Toronto received some significant financial support this week, one for advanced business management at a new Burlington campus and the other for a pilot plant that will make hydrogen gas from water and solar energy.


McMaster University’s Ron Joyce Centre is the recipient of a $1-million gift from the Marinucci Family Foundation for the Burlington campus’s DeGroote School of Business, which will accept its first MBA students in September.

John Marinucci, the retired president and CEO of bus manufacturer New Flyer Industries Canada in Winnipeg, is a McMaster alumnus who graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce degree in 1980.

The Marinucci Family Auditorium, a 250-seat classroom located in the heart of the Ron Joyce Centre, will be the largest teaching and presentation space within the building.

In Oshawa, two University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) professors have been awarded an  $883,000 grant for the engineering design, research and construction of a pre-commercial pilot plant that will use water and solar energy to generate hydrogen gas.

Over the next four years, Ibrahim Dincer and Greg Naterer, professors with UOIT’s Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, will receive funding from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada and cash and in-kind support from Phoenix Canada Oil Co. Ltd.. The Toronto-based company invests in oil and gas, mining and industrial projects in Canada and around the world.

The funding will be used to further develop Phoenix’s low-cost production system, which will be used to scale up a new photochemical technology that applies photosynthesis to split water into hydrogen and oxygen.

UOIT says the technology is based on a proprietary photochemical system that uses molecular photocatalysts, or artificially fabricated molecules, that absorb sunlight to bring electrons together and facilitate the water splitting process, without being degraded or consumed over time.

The project will develop, analyze, fabricate and test the equipment required for the engineering system; and identify possible improvements leading to the development of a pre-commercial hydrogen pilot plant on UOIT’s north Oshawa campus. The prototype will be built and tested there using artificial sunlight under controlled conditions.

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