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K-State Today

May 2, 2011



President Kirk Schulz receiving Graduate Alumni Achievement Award from Virginia Tech

By Julie Fosberg

Before he bled purple, Kirk Schulz was a Hokie.

The Kansas State University president earned a bachelor's and a doctorate in chemical engineering from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in 1986 and 1991, respectively. Since then he's contributed his talents to the field as a professor, a vice president for research and economic development and a university president.

He's being honored by his alma mater with Virginia Tech's Graduate Alumni Achievement Award. Virginia Tech's graduate school and alumni association established the Graduate Alumni Achievement award to recognize graduate alumni who have achieved the highest goals in their fields.

Criteria for award winners include demonstrating outstanding national or international achievement and exemplary contribution to the profession, discipline, community or society. For his achievements, Schulz will receive a plaque at Virginia Tech's spring commencement May 13.

"It's a huge honor for me to be singled out among Virginia Tech graduate alumni for this award," Schulz said. "I recognize the strong educational foundation I got at Virginia Tech. My experiences there as both an undergraduate and graduate student have helped me throughout my career."

In February 2009 the Kansas Board of Regents selected Schulz as the 13th president of K-State. Shortly after his arrival he initiated the K-State 2025 visionary planning initiative, which seeks to place K-State among the top 50 public research universities by 2025.

"One of the things I'm most proud of in my career is working to make K-State a top 50 public research institution by 2025," he said. "The bar is set high, but K-Staters are enthusiastically accepting the challenge. Our university community is responsive to ambitious goals."

Before his appointment as president, Schulz served as vice president for research and economic development at Mississippi State University. He has also served on the faculty at Michigan Technological University and the University of North Dakota.

Schulz is married to Noel Nunnally Schulz, a fellow Hokie who earned a bachelor's and a master's in electrical engineering from Virginia Tech. Noel Schulz is the Paslay professor of electrical and computer engineering at K-State.

The couple have two sons, Timothy and Andrew.