Letters to campus
Dear Faculty and Staff,
Greetings from Anderson Hall! I hope your summer has been a productive one with time for some reflection and relaxation. I took an "electronic break" from work email this summer and was successful in my goal to not look at K-State email for 14 days. While I love email, texting, social media and new electronic gadgets as much as anyone, I can say that my time away from email was helpful and allowed me to return with a refreshed perspective.
Last week we announced that Dr. Ron Trewyn will be transitioning from his role as vice president for research to a full-time position as our NBAF liaison. I have had several people ask questions about this transition, and I want to take this opportunity to provide some additional details.
There has been significant encouragement for some time from the Governor, our Kansas delegation, the Kansas Board of Regents and the Department of Homeland Security to appoint a Kansas-based NBAF lead at K-State. However, I felt that this was preliminary until there were clear indications that funding for the NBAF laboratory construction ($404 million has been proposed by both the House and Senate) was moving through Congress quickly enough that the start of construction was likely to occur in 12 to 18 months. Given these circumstances and the support of the various groups involved with NBAF, Dr. Trewyn's transition to the NBAF liaison post will come at a strategic time when the demands placed on the university to continue to lead and shepherd this $1 billion project are increasing significantly.
So, how are we going to pay for this position given all of the other budget constraints we face? For the past two years, we have received annual grants from the State of Kansas for animal health and for NBAF research at Kansas State University. These funds are what will be used to pay Dr. Trewyn's salary as he moves into this new role, which will occur at the conclusion of a national search for a new vice president for research. This search will be chaired by April Mason and will begin with the fall semester. During my annual visits to colleges and similar units this fall, I will be happy to discuss this at length and answer any questions that faculty and staff may have regarding the NBAF project and our leadership of this important endeavor.
As we continue to work toward the goals laid out in K-State 2025, it is important that we make continued investments and improvements in Theme 6 – Facilities and Infrastructure. This past year the university, excluding Athletics projects, invested $53.1 million in capital improvements and deferred maintenance. With the remainder of this month's letter, I would like to highlight many of the infrastructure improvements which are underway this summer – and which will continue to chip away at our deferred maintenance backlog.
Academic Capital and Infrastructure Improvements
K-State Tennis Center – The brand-new K-State Tennis Center features six outdoor courts, with purple playing surfaces and Powercats dividing the courts. The courts also feature a Musco lighting system, steel benches with "K-State" welded into the backrests, and metal bleachers on the south side of the court with room to accommodate 400 fans. The K-State Tennis Center is part of a renovation of the outdoor facilities at the Chester E. Peters Recreation Complex. The renovated complex features two outdoor basketball courts and two sand volleyball courts.
Chester E. Peters Recreation Complex – The student-funded expansion and construction project is scheduled to be completed in August. The 86,000 square foot new construction expansion and overall renovation of 200,000 existing square feet added new and renovated space for cardio and weight rooms; an extension of the running track; multi-activity courts; lounges; mind/body, spinning exercise rooms; a 40 foot climbing wall; a juice bar; north parking lot renovation and lighting upgrades and a south parking lot for students. In addition, upgrades were made to the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system and lighting and fire-protection systems were added and upgraded throughout the building as required to meet current code requirements.
O.H. Kruse Feed Technology Innovation Center – The new feed manufacturing/research facility is nearing completion this month. The dedication is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 11. The feed mill is a joint effort of K-State's department of grain science and industry and the department of animal sciences and industry. The demolition of the old campus feed mill will begin once the new mill is in full production.
Durland Hall Chemical Engineering Lab Renovation – Completed major renovation remodeling the area into five laboratories this past fall. The renovation made the laboratories safer, more energy efficient and provided adequate lab space for faculty to consolidate experiments. Replaced the HVAC system.
Seaton Hall 034 Lab Renovation – Renovated the space to add additional rooms, replaced the HVAC system, updated ceiling and lighting and laid an epoxy floor. The project is scheduled for completion this fall.
Burt Hall 101A-133 Lab Renovation – Renovated the space and replaced the HVAC system; installed new ceiling and lighting; and painted. This project is scheduled for completion in August.
Veterinary Medical Center Chiller Plant – Construction was completed in April 2013; increased chill water capacity in all three Veterinary Medical Center buildings.
Replaced steam and condensation lines east along Claflin and back across campus to the physical plant. This explains all the digging around campus this summer.
Ackert Hall – Replaced generator electrical switch; HVAC system in biology research animal rooms; replaced sidewalk and steps.
Ahearn – Roof replacement in Natatorium: flat roof over pool, east entrance and west entrance.
Bluemont Hall – Renovated classroom 101; replaced concrete walk and sealed windows.
Cardwell Hall – Replaced HVAC systems in general classrooms 101-103.
Holton Hall – Repaired southeast foundation wall.
Honors Hall – Housing and Dining Services purchased a fraternity house this past year and renovated it to create the new Honors Hall. They updated electrical and plumbing systems; replaced sheet rock, carpet and ceilings; installed new HVAC controls, laundry facility, kitchenette, parking surface and sidewalks.
Jardine Building H – Replaced the kitchens, bathrooms, fire alarms, carpet, installed new electric stoves, sloped roofs, balconies and stairs.
Kedzie Hall – Replaced west stairs, correcting major safety issues.
Moore Hall – Upgraded the HVAC system with new units in student rooms.
Nichols Hall – Replaced stone to prevent water from penetrating into the building; corrected electrical deficiencies; replaced fire suppression system in Room 114; and renovated locker rooms 001 and 002.
Residence Halls Energy Saving Projects – Installed new meters to manage energy usage and installed "smart" thermostats in student rooms to monitor energy usage.
Waters Hall – Replaced HVAC system in annex; updated restrooms replacing flooring system, fixtures and stall dividers.
Umberger Hall – Updated restrooms replacing flooring system, fixtures and stall dividers.
Information Technology and Classroom Upgrades
Upgraded network for 17 campus buildings from 100 megabits to 1 gigabit. All campus buildings are now connected by at least a 1 gigabit network.
Installed technology in new and renovated construction including Bill Snyder Family Stadium, O.H. Kruse Feed Technology Innovation Center, Honors House Residence Hall, Human Ecology Research Center (former Nanoscale building), Intercollegiate Rowing Center, Danforth Chapel and the Chester E. Peters Recreation Complex.
Upgraded networks to 10 gigabit in Nichols, Durland and Throckmorton.
Network improvements coming soon include Hale Data Center, Bushnell Hall, Chem/BioChem, Moore Hall, Weber Hall and the Salina Technical Assistance Center.
Added or updated 359 wireless access points for a total of 1,700 access points. Additionally, 3,500 gigabit wired ports have been updated this year.
Upgraded 55 classrooms since last spring, and 107 classrooms with basic technology. Dickens 161, McCain 325, Eisenhower 227, GYM 204 and GYM 205 will come online this summer.
Upgraded All Faith's Chapel with screen, sound system and projection update. Lecture capture systems are being installed in Cardwell 144/145, Dickens 207, Kedzie 106, Leasure 13 and Umberger 105.
Several campus classrooms are receiving significant infrastructure upgrades. McCain 201 is being upgraded with new technology. McCain 204 is part of a longer-term upgrade with new flooring, seating, acoustics, technology and more. The first phase of the upgrade began this summer and extends into fall 2013. Bluemont 101 is receiving a major facelift and new technology.
The list is long! Many of our staff members have worked very hard on these renovation projects in order to help ensure modern and updated teaching and research facilities. Please give them a hearty "thank-you" when you see them on campus.
Good luck to all as the summer winds down and the 2013 fall semester is less than a month away!