As the coronavirus spread throughout the United States, one Cullen College of Engineering alum felt compelled to act and to support the university that helped him.
GQ Guo graduated from the college with a Master's in Petroleum Engineering in 2017, but continued to monitor the pandemic in Houston following his graduation. When one of his friends in China opened a mask factory, Guo arranged to send 800 masks to the university.
“Thanks to him, I managed to obtain the masks, and shipped them to UH immediately,” Guo said. “It is hard to say what motivated me exactly. I was just feeling that I need to do it, and I must do it. I need to take that responsibility.”
The masks were received by Dr. Mohamed Soliman, the Petroleum Engineering Department Chairman and the William C. Miller endowed chair professor. Soliman said he remembered Guo well, from when he was a student at the college.
“This guy was so active, I was extremely impressed,” Soliman said. “He brought people from industry to talks, getting donations and he was really doing a first class job … After he got a job here in the states, I wasn't surprised at all, because he's a very energetic guy. Only a year or so later, he decided to quit and form his own company.”
Soliman noted that this wasn't the first time that Guo had donated to the department and the Cullen College of Engineering.
“He came to my office for a graduation party, and he told me he wanted to donate something to the party,” Soliman said. The donation meant a lot to Soliman, noting the position most graduates are in.
Guo said the supportive environment of the college always encouraged him to give back. He started GQ (Good Quality) Petro LLC. in July 2017, shortly after his graduation. It provides consulting services, technical training and market research to bridge North American and Asian energy markets. When Guo's company made its first profit in April 2018, he donated to the university again.
“If you are in a place where everyone is passionate, energetic and optimistic, you will be one of them,” he said. “Another reason is belief. I believe in UH, and I trust my professors and my friends over there. I feel proud of it. No matter what happened, I knew UH friends and faculty were backing me up.”