New Media Center in Greensburg, KS
An exemplary example of student and university engagement can be found in the Department of Landscape Architecture/Regional and Community Planning at Kansas State University. Two graduate level classes are currently involved with assisting the city of Lindsborg, Kan. in updating its comprehensive community plan.
"The Kiowa County Media Center is a great opportunity for the people of the county to cover meetings, school activities, community events, and important news in their communities," said Gloria Freeland, director of the Huck Boyd National Center for Community Media and assistant professor in the A.Q. Miller School of Journalism and Mass Communications. "To me, it's not just the communications hub for the county; it's also the heart of it."
The center was designed based on a plan that other communities can easily copy and is open to all citizens to use the equipment.
"The equipment is easy to operate so anyone can use it," said Brandon Utech, technical producer of Communications and Marketing at K-State, "It allows for journalism students, retirees, and working moms to use the equipment."
The original team of K-Staters who met back in 2007 had the opportunity to attend the ribbon cutting ceremony of the Kiowa County Commons. Biles was one of the speakers at the ceremony and thanked all the individuals who put in their time and effort to make the commons a reality.
"I kept thinking, 'holy mackerel, this actually happened,"" said Biles, " It was quite remarkable to see all the pieces come together."
Biles reported that K-State individuals and departments were instrumental in the construction of the new media center. As a signature university engaged partnership, K-State worked to understand Greensburg"s priorities and linked those needs to K-State"s resources. In addition, by providing K-State expertise, facilitating collaborative relationships, and providing very limited funding, this important project was made possible.
"K-State saw the opportunity in this project and allowed us to make the time commitment to see this project from beginning to end," said Biles.