The Chicago Tribune’s Blue Sky Innovation, a special section dedicated to innovators and entrepreneurs, profiled the new Siebel Center for Design at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
The article states:
- A $25 million donation from tech entrepreneur Thomas Siebel will help build the new innovation-focused design center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. It is meant to bring together disciplines from around campus.
- The two-story building will feature a variety of spaces, including workshops for things like 3D printing and laser cutting, digital media studios for audio recording, and immersive technologies for virtual reality.
- Siebel is chairman and CEO of C3.ai, a Redwood City, Calif.-based software company that lets companies design and operate Internet of Things applications. In 1993, he founded Siebel Systems, a global software company that merged with Oracle Corporation in 2006.
- This is not Siebel’s first naming gift to U. of I. In 2000, six years before his company merged with Oracle, he gave $32 million to the university to build the Thomas M. Siebel Center for Computer Science.
- Siebel is an alumnus with three degrees from U. of I.: a bachelor’s in history from 1975, an MBA from 1983 and a master’s in computer science from 1985.
- Siebel said he expects companies and inventions to grow out of the Design Center that will have an impact on Chicago and Illinois. “It’s going to make change happen, and it’s going to make changes happen for the better.”