Employee giving tour of construction
The CEED will contain office space, co-working space, wet lab space, a makerspace, conference/event space, and a café

Big changes are on the way for the Center for Energy and Economic Diversification (CEED) building located on UT Permian Basin’s Midland Campus. The 30,000 square foot building is undergoing substantial renovations to develop spaces to support innovation and entrepreneurship.

“Internships is going to be a big focus here so we are really excited for companies to be able to come in with just one or two people and then be able to bring students in to assist them with their development,” said Executive Director of UTPB’s Office of Innovation and Commercialization, Brian Shedd.

Once completed, CEED will contain office space, co-working space, wet lab space, a makerspace, conference/event space, and a café, all of which will be available for the community to use.

“We are going to be very community focused here. The goal is really to try to bring people in, get them engaged with the University, and create opportunities for different companies and entrepreneurs to develop relationships with faculty and to hire students," Shedd added.

The Office of Innovation and Commercialization (OIC) is also co-located at the CEED with the UTPB Small Business Development Center (SBDC) and two Engineering research labs, the Texas Water and Energy Institute (TWEI) and the Advanced Manufacturing Center (AMC).


There will be 4 main areas developed under the renovations, the first being the Innovation Corridor which will run through the center of the building and is comprised of about 7,000 square feet. The Innovation Corridor will contain an office suite housing OIC and several tenant companies, the wet lab, the co-working suite, the makerspace, and an MBA executive classroom to be used by the College of Business for student entrepreneurs.

52116796507_781403e6d7_c.jpgThe second area is the conference and event space which is where all of the pitch competitions and startup accelerator programs will be held. The conference and event space will include a 90-seat auditorium designed to be used for larger presentations and competitions, such as the Midland Development Corporation’s Midland Entrepreneurial Challenge, which awards $500,000 to local small businesses; an event space that seats 40 and can be reconfigured into breakout meeting rooms or large training sessions; an atrium that can be configured to seat around 50 people and will be used for social networking events; and lastly an MBA executive classroom that will offer training and education space outfitted with audio/video presentation capability. All of these spaces will be accessible to community to hold events and offer programs that overlap with the innovative & entrepreneurial vision for the CEED.

The third area are the SBDC offices, which are being relocated to this area to provide seamless support for small businesses and connectivity with the other programs at OIC and resources within the CEED. UTPB’s SBDC is one of the most active in the state and consults with over 4,000 businesses annually.

Lastly, in the fourth area, are two labs located at the back of the building for the College of Engineering. The labs are the Texas Water and Energy Institute, which is conducting research around produced water derived from fracking and other oil production activities in the Permian Basin, and the Advanced Manufacturing Center, which will house sophisticated manufacturing and characterization equipment to support UTPB research and industry collaborations.

The expected completion date for the renovations is December 2022.