Above and Beyond

Going the extra mile for K-State

A standing ovation followed President Myer’s announcement at the KSU Foundation Board of Trustees meeting April 21 — K-State had surpassed its $1 billion campaign goal more than a year early. But instead of saying “mission accomplished,” the Innovation and Inspiration Campaign has a new goal; to raise $1.4 billion by 2020.

After careful deliberation, K-State President Richard Myers, KSU Foundation Board of Directors and foundation leadership made the decision to extend the campaign. “We’ve proven we can achieve more than we ever thought possible, so we must build on the success and momentum that has allowed us to reach our goal a full year in advance,” Myers said. “We know the K-State family can go above and beyond all expectations.”

The campaign will continue to support K-State’s vision of being recognized as a top 50 public research university by 2025, but will now have three signature drivers to lead the Innovation and Inspiration Campaign forward. These drivers, which complement the 2025 vision, are land-grant mission, centers of excellence and interdisciplinary programs and securing K-State’s legacy through long-term investments.

Three key areas going forward
Land-grant mission

K-State has long valued its mission of keeping education accessible and affordable to the people of Kansas and beyond. With the decline of state funding, President Myers said K-State must remain focused on access and affordability.

“We must redouble our efforts to provide scholarships based on need — not just merit — because any future Wildcat worthy of admission is worthy of our support,” he said. “We must invest in the complete educational experience — libraries, performance halls, community-building facilities — that bring our diverse student body together to create a truly inclusive and modern learning environment.”

Centers of excellence and interdisciplinary programs

These programs are our moonshots — the areas where we have a competitive advantage and the potential to change the world. We know that our best research and teaching efforts are ones that bring together thinkers and researchers from across the academy to create interdisciplinary programs with truly transformational impact, and these programs are examples of that:

  • Polytechnic unmanned systems and aviation programs, which are ranked among the nation’s best
  • Center for Risk Management Education and Research
  • Bio-agro security, including the Biosecurity Research Institute and the Department of Homeland Security’s National Bio and Agro-defense Facility (NBAF), making us the Silicon Valley of biodefense
  • The Staley School of Leadership Studies and the Snyder Leadership Legacy Fellows program

“We will continue to work to advance our other great universitywide programs, like the Johnson Cancer Research Center, the Beach Museum, McCain, K-State Libraries and more,” Myers said. “These programs will help us realize our goal of becoming a top 50 public research university by 2025.”

K-State legacy

K-State will focus on increasing the number of documented planned gifts, ensuring the success of K-State through long-term investments.

“We are energized by the generosity of the K-State family, which is vital now more than ever. As state support for higher education continues to fall, we rely ever more on support from K-State alumni and friends to meet the needs facing the university and to make college education possible for those who desire it. Our new goal of raising even more for K-State will help us meet those needs for K-State and its students.”

— Greg Willems, president and CEO of KSU Foundation

“The success of the campaign thus far and the decision to extend it is due to the amazing generosity of K-State’s philanthropists and the hard work of hundreds of campaign volunteers. We sincerely thank all of the volunteers and donors who have invested their time, talent and treasure to benefit K-State faculty, students and program today and for future generations. We invite all who want to help K-State reach new heights to join the Innovation and Inspiration Campaign.”

— Rand Berney, campaign co-chair and chair of the KSU Foundation Board of Directors

“We stand among an elite set of universities who dared to work toward an incredible goal. We stand at the top of the highest people we have ever dared to climb. But instead of heading back down the mountain, we are setting our sights on an even greater peak, for we have learned what we have the strength and capacity to achieve.”

— Richard Myers, president of K-State

Campaign achievements, to date
  • 41 new endowed faculty positions
  • 7 new facilities and multiple renovations funded by philanthropy
  • $238 million raised for student success
  • 51% of campaign donors are alumni

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