Sources: John English, 785-532-5590, jenglish@k-state.edu; and Mika Cohn, 913-397-8200, mika.cohn@garmin.com
News tip/hometown connection: Garden City, Junction City, Manhattan, Mount Hope, Ness City, Pratt, Solomon and Wichita, Kan.; Northfield, Minn.; and Omaha, Neb.
News release prepared by: Beth Bohn, 785-532-1544, bbohn@k-state.edu

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Positioned for success: Garmin internship program gives students hands-on research experience

MANHATTAN -- A new engineering internship program for Kansas State University students offered by Garmin International Inc. is up and running at the Manhattan/K-State Innovation Center.

Nine students, all computer engineering or computer science majors, have been selected to serve in the internships. They are supporting Garmin's aviation business segment by doing testing and some software development. The students are working part time during the spring semester, and have the opportunity to stay at the K-State facility or come to Garmin's Olathe headquarters for a full-time internship program this summer.

Garmin worked closely with Kansas State University, the university's Institute for Commercialization, the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce and Knowledge Based Economic Development LLC to open its software engineering facility in the Manhattan/K-State Innovation Center, a 30,000 square foot building in the university's research park. The building is owned by the city of Manhattan and managed by the university's Institute for Commercialization, which is known as KSU-IC.

The internship program lets students work side-by-side with Garmin engineers to get hands-on experience developing the next generation of Garmin GPS products.

"Our partnership with Garmin is so valuable to our students, giving them real-world research opportunities through internships with a well-known company. Providing our students with these types of research experiences are vital in our efforts to make Kansas State University a top 50 public research university by 2025," said K-State President Kirk Schulz. "This partnership also shows the Manhattan/K-State Innovation Center is already finding success in attracting new business opportunities to the community and helping the local economy."

John English, dean of the College of Engineering, says having Garmin at K-State is a big opportunity for students.

"Having these top-notch internships, through an outstanding company like Garmin International, available on our campus is an unprecedented opportunity for our engineering student body," English said.

"Garmin's expansion into Manhattan represents another win in our community's strategy to attract and create high-pay, knowledge-based jobs,” said Lyle Butler, president of the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce. "K-State's College of Engineering continues to be a talent magnet for major employers and we are proud to work with them to help grow our area economy."

Students serving internships at the new Garmin facility include:

Eric Tran, senior in computer engineering, Garden City; Matthew Olson, sophomore in computer engineering, Junction City; Nathan Reichenberger, junior in computer engineering, Mount Hope; Brett Seib, senior in computer engineering, Ness City; Nathan Southard, senior in computer engineering, Pratt; Joseph Janssen, sophomore in computer engineering, Solomon; and Nathan Feldkamp, senior in computer science,Wichita.

From out of state: Michael Polzin, junior in computer science, Northfield, Minn.; and Rob Dorman, senior in computer engineering, Omaha, Neb.