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2025 Visionary Plan

As K-State's 2025 strategic plan comes to a close, our strategic planning efforts continue as Next-Gen K-State. See the latest updates on the Next-Gen K-State website.

Theme 3: Graduate Scholarly Experience


Advance a culture of excellence that attracts highly talented, diverse graduate students and produces graduates recognized as outstanding in their respective professions.

Strategic Action Plan (pdf)

Latest news

Read more K-State 2025 news

Activities and Accomplishments

  • The number of doctorate degrees awarded, a key university benchmark measure, increased more than 33% over the past decade, with a record 216 doctorates awarded in academic year 2020-2021.

  • Funding support for graduate students was improved through initiatives in the colleges and Graduate School, including the addition of new programs such as the Presidential Doctoral Scholarship Program, the Marie R. Bonebrake Graduate Award and the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Small Grant Program.

  • Eight new graduate degrees and 52 graduate certificates were approved since 2011, expanding our online and in-person graduate programs to meet today's need for graduate education. Twelve of these new graduate degrees and certificates are interdisciplinary.

  • The number of fully online graduate program offerings increased, including 6 doctoral programs, 16 master programs and 25 graduate certificates. Five doctoral programs are now available online and on campus.

  • K-State Olathe's School of Applied and Interdisciplinary Studies was established and now offers a professional science master's in applied biosciences and three graduate certificates in addition to several graduate programs based on our Manhattan campus.

  • Career development activities were expanded for graduate students with an increased number of professional development workshops offered annually.

  • Graduate School alumni reunions were held for the first time to reconnect graduate alumni with the Graduate School, academic departments and the university.

  • The Graduate School enhanced operational support serving both graduate programs and students, including implementation of College Net for admission processing, more efficient processing of student documents and an enhanced online presence.

  • A Graduate Student Ambassador Program was launched to support the recruitment of graduate students and facilitate their transition to the university.

Leading the Way

Climate change, food security, global health issues, racial and gender equality. These are just a few of the complex challenges facing the world today in need of effective leadership and more progress.

Equipping people to make such progress is the aim of a new doctoral program at Kansas State University that prepares its graduates to use interdisciplinary approaches to solve the pressing issues of the day.

The leadership communication doctoral program was launched in 2018 by the communications studies department, communications and agricultural education department and Staley School of Leadership Studies. Less than four years later, the program has 33 active students and has produced its first two graduates.

Through the program, students examine the theories and methods of leadership and communication needed for collaborative change. Working with faculty, each student develops a customized plan of study emphasizing their area of interest and the community/organizational challenges that matter most to them.

The leadership communication program is an interdisciplinary research degree. By the study and practice of leading change, engaging community and advancing communication, students produce original research that contributes to making progress on the most difficult challenges of today.

With this degree, students use community-engaged research to transform the academic, nonprofit, government, and private and civic sectors in which they live and work.