A sizeable cash settlement between the province and Exxon Mobil is going to make a big difference at Memorial University.

The province will receive $150 million to make up for jobs and infrastructure that will be lost, now that the oil company decided not to build a third Hebron oil module in waters offshore Newfoundland and Labrador.

The government will use these funds to replace MUN's Science Building, one of the oldest on campus.

The Chemistry-Physics building, meanwhile, is in for a major upgrade.

Both were built in the 1960s, and most of the facilities and equipment in them have never been updated.


Dean of Science Mark Abrahams said the current facility is sorely outdated. CBC

"It has not changed much since then," said MUN's Dean of Science Mark Abrahams.

That's been a big problem for a faculty that relies on rapidly changing technology.

The university has recognized the need for new Science facilities for a long time. But the upgrade wasn't financially feasible until the province cut the deal with Exxon Mobil this week.

Dean of Science Mark Abrahams says the big winners will be MUN students.

"We really want to engage them on the subject matter," said Abrahams, "show them what is really exciting about the science and give them the opportunities to see and do those exciting things."

The university will now begin the process of selecting a site for the new science building.

Grad student Steven Bouzane says the new facilities won't just look better, but will make for a better education.

"You're going to go into a place that's very safe, modern," said Bouzane. "It's night and day."