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K-State in the news — December 2020

Some of the top stories mentioning Kansas State University are posted below. Download an Excel file (xls) with all of this month's news stories.

Wednesday, Dec. 23, 2020

National/International

Cocrystal Pharma Selects Lead Compound for Further Development Against Coronaviruses

12/22/20 AP
DI-45205 was one of the broad spectrum protease inhibitors that were obtained by an exclusive license from Kansas State University Research Foundation (KSURF) under an agreement announced in April 2020.

GEAPS/KSU distance education program to end

12/23/20 World-Grain.com
The distance education program offered in partnership by the Grain Elevator and Processing Society (GEAPS) and Kansas State University (KSU) is coming to an end after 15 years. KSU said it will discontinue the program on Jan. 1, 2021, citing “COVID-related budget strains, a continuing decline in participant numbers, and GEAPS leadership changes.”

$200k grant to study cattle feed

12/23/20 Hemptoday.net
Researchers at Kansas State University (KSU) received $200,000 from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to research hemp for its potential as a cattle feed.

Regional/State

Midwestern universities form alliance to lure Space Command

12/23/20 Topeka Capital-Journal
Four Midwestern universities have formed a space-oriented academic and research alliance aimed at luring the U.S. Space Command headquarters to Offutt Air Force Base in Nebraska.

University of Nebraska President Ted Carter said the partnership with the University of North Dakota, Kansas State University and Purdue would develop new degree programs and research initiatives, the Omaha World-Herald reported.

Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020

National/International

Midwestern universities form alliance to lure Space Command
12/21/20 The Washington Post 
University of Nebraska President Ted Carter said the partnership with the University of North Dakota, Kansas State University and Purdue would develop new degree programs and research initiatives, the Omaha World-Herald reported.

Regional/State

Sedgwick County opens walk-in COVID-19 testing location in northwest Wichita
12/21/20 KAKE 
Instead of the site at 620 North Edgemoor, the Sedgwick County Health Department now offers no-cost, walk-in testing at the K-State Research and Extension Center at 7001 West 21st Street, on the southeast corner of 21st and Ridge.

Local

*K-State agronomist receives $3M grant to develop digital geospatial tools for improving resilience of farming systems
12/21/20 1350 KMAN
A $3 million grant has been awarded to a Kansas State University researcher to improve the resilience of smallholder livelihoods through the application of digital and geospatial decision support tools under diverse farming systems.

Monday, Dec. 21, 2020

National/International

University of Nebraska joins other schools in alliance to bring Space Command to Offutt AFB
12/20/20 Stars and Stripes
The pitch from NU President Ted Carter; Mitch Daniels, president of Purdue University; Mark Hagerott, chancellor of the North Dakota University System, and Richard Myers, president of Kansas State University; aims to create a bigger value-added proposition.

Will rising temperatures make superweeds even stronger?
12/18/20 Wired
Now the stalwart weed had Stahlman stumped. Stahlman, then a weed scientist at Kansas State University, had never encountered this problem with herbicides before. He initially assumed that he had applied the agrichemicals incorrectly. But year after year, the same thing happened. Stahlman knew something was up. He kept a close watch on the weeds in his fields. He also conferred with local farmers who reported seeing similar problems. “The light didn’t come on for a while until the issue kept reoccurring. It was like putting together a puzzle,” says Stahlman.

Regional/State

*Coronavirus could end history, math and chemistry majors at some universities in Kansas
12/21/20 Wichita Eagle/KMUW
If the programs go away, students could have some jury-rigged options, like taking online classes from another school in Kansas. If Emporia State University’s chemistry major disappears, and its general education courses go with it, those students could be allowed to take an online version from Kansas State University.

*K-State sees success in higher education during pandemic
12/19/20 WIBW-TV
During the Kansas Board of Regents Dec. 16 meeting, President Richard Myers discussed the university’s success in higher education during the COVID-19 this past semester. It said he shared that the university’s testing efforts will soon be made available at the Student Union and in residence halls to encourage students to participate.

Local

*Montelone to serve as interim vice president for research at K-State
12/20/20 Manhattan Mercury
After an internal search, K-State President Richard Myers has appointed Beth Montelone, the university’s senior associate vice president for research, to the post of interim vice president for research.

*Star night, star bright: Rare close alignment of Jupiter, Saturn can be seen Monday
12/20/20 Manhattan Mercury
In a brief period just after sundown, the planets Jupiter and Saturn can be seen in a cosmic dance popularly referred to as the “Christmas Star” in the sky to the southwest. The orbital rendezvous of the pair of planets occurs about every 20 years, and Chris Sorensen, the Cortelyou-Rust University Distinguished Professor at Kansas State University, said he remembers seeing a similar meeting of the giant planets in the past.

Friday, Dec. 18, 2020

National/International

Universities Housing and Dining Fees Won't Rise Next Year
12/18/20 Associated Press/US News and World Report
Average costs for double-occupancy rooms with limited dining options will remain at $9,156 at Emporia State, $8,182 at Fort Hays State, $9,480 at Kansas State, $9,700 at the University of Kansas, $7,956 at Pittsburg State and $11,180 at Wichita State.

Regional/State

Universities housing and dining fees won’t rise next year
12/17/20 The Wichita Eagle
Average costs for double-occupancy rooms with limited dining options will remain at $9,156 at Emporia State, $8,182 at Fort Hays State, $9,480 at Kansas State, $9,700 at the University of Kansas, $7,956 at Pittsburg State and $11,180 at Wichita State.

Local

Myers looking ahead to spring semester, suggests outdoor commencement possible
12/17/20 KMAN
K-State President Richard Myers says the university plans to continue efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 when students return next month for the Spring semester.

*K-State releases annual security, fire safety reports
12/17/20 WIBW
Kansas State University says it is dedicated to helping all members of its community have a positive educational experience and is fully committed to providing a safe and inclusive environment for everyone. It said as part of that commitment, its annual security and fire safety report is published to ensure community members receive information about crime on and around campus, efforts to improve campus safety and university policies.

Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020

National/International

Smells on a plane: Have you been exposed to toxic chemicals while flying?

12/17/20 Los Angeles Times
A 2015 study conducted by researchers at Kansas State University and funded by the Federal Aviation Administration analyzed aviation records to estimate that fume events occur once every 5,000 flights. That translated to about five fume events a day in the U.S. in the era before the coronavirus.

Regional/State

Most KC-area colleges say it’s too soon to decide if they’ll require students to get COVID-19 vaccine
12/16/20 Fox 4
Kansas State University hasn’t made a decision either. “We do not anticipate vaccines being widely available during the spring 2021 semester and will make the decision following CDC and KDHE guidelines,” KSU spokeswoman Michelle Geering said.

Kansas's state universities will keep housing, dining costs flat next school year
12/16/20 Topeka Capital-Journal
By keeping fees flat, housing officials also hope to bring more students into residence halls to offset increased operations costs as a result of the pandemic. In any case, some universities like Kansas State anticipate that over 20% of positions in their housing departments will be cut or remain unfilled.

Wednesday, Dec. 16, 2020

National/International

Director Of U.S. Office of Infectious Disease Dr. Tammy Beckham Joins UNT
12/15/20 CBS Dallas Fort Worth
She also has extensive academic experience, serving from 2015 to 2017 as Dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine at Kansas State University and from 2008 to 2015 as both the Director of the Institute for Infectious Animal Diseases and Chief Operating Officer of the Texas Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory at the Texas A&M University System.

Regional/State

After A Pandemic Delay, Kansas Is Changing How It Teaches Reading With Dyslexic Students In Mind
12/15/20 High Plains Public Radio
Lotta Larson, an associate professor at Kansas State University focusing on literacy, called that aggressive screening plan a game changer.

Local

In Focus 12/14/20
12/14/20 1350 KMAN
Kansas State University College of Veterinary Medicine Clinical Professor and Section Head/Livestock Services Dr. Matt Miesner spoke about winter preparation with calving season during Monday’s program.

Biosecurity Research Institute Director Dr. Stephen Higgs joined us for an update regarding ongoing research related to SARS-COV-2 and vaccine development.

Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020

National/International

Solar Decathlon Technology Innovation Series
12/14/20 Energy.gov
Kansas State University’s Net Positive Studio is a multiyear effort in which students pursuing a master’s in architecture work with local groups in Kansas City’s Historic Northeast neighborhood. The Kansas State team is developing a high quality energy-efficient home that is affordable for low-income households.

Regional/State

The Coronavirus Could End History, Math And Chemistry Majors At Some Universities In Kansas
12/14/20 KCUR
If Emporia State University’s chemistry major disappears, and its general education courses go with it, those students could be allowed to take an online version from Kansas State University.

Local

K-State professor starts “Sewing For Soldiers Project,” sending holiday care packages for troops overseas
12/14/20 KSNT
Jess Martin is an anatomy professor at Kansas State University, now adding seamstress to her resume this holiday season, for what she’s calling the “Sewing for Soldiers Project.”

OUR NEIGHBORS | K-State entomologist researches how insects and land affect each other
12/14/20 Manhattan Mercury
Kim, an entomologist at K-State, researches the relationship between insects and the land and how people’s land management affect insects. 

Monday, Dec. 14, 2020

National/International

*Peer-led punishment for flouting pandemic rules
12/11/Inside Higher Ed
There are a few other campuses that have tasked their already existing student boards with responding to COVID-19 violations. The student review board at Kansas State University uses a “three-tier system” for disciplining students who do not follow the university’s coronavirus guidelines, said Andy Thompson, senior associate dean of students.

Regional/State

Renowned veterinarian, daughter of former Kansas senator dies from brain disease
12/13/20 Kansas City Star
Kassebaum Johnson earned multiple degrees, including a doctorate in veterinary medicine, from Kansas State University before completing her post-doctorate studies and a Master of Public Health degree at John Hopkins University, according to her obituary.

*After a pandemic delay, Kansas is changing how it teaches reading with dyslexic students in mind
12/11/KMUW
Lotta Larson, an associate professor at Kansas State University focusing on literacy, called that aggressive screening plan a game changer.

Local

*Lafene Health announced as COVID-19 vaccine distribution center
12/12/20 WIBW-TV
In an effort to increase transparency with faculty, staff and students, Kansas State University officials have held virtual town hall meetings throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Kyle Goerl, director of Lafene Health Center, gave an update on COVID-19 data at K-State. Dr Goerl announced that Riley County has designated Lafene Health Center as a COVID-19 vaccination distribution center.

In final Senate speech, Roberts calls for colleagues to work together
12/11/20 Manhattan Mercury
Roberts is a Kansas State University alumnus and has a building on campus named after him.

Friday, Dec. 11, 2020

National/International

The COVID-19 Pandemic: Insights from Agricultural Economists
12/10/20 San Antonio
Papers in this session … Glynn Tonsor, Kansas State University

Local

Manhattan High prepares for finals while K-State adapts recruitment efforts
12/10/20 The Manhattan Mercury
For those graduating, they won't have to worry as much about college preparatory exams if they wish to attend Kansas State University or other institutions in 2021.

Sunset Zoo program virtually connects high school students with scientists
12/10/20 WIBW
The first career connection was held Wednesday with masters in geology student, Sarah Lamm from Kansas State University as the guest speaker.

Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020

National/International

MYOS CORP Announces Positive Results from Mobility and Quality of Life Study in Geriatric and Arthritic Dogs at Kansas State University
12/9/20 AP
This most recent study completed at Kansas State University involved supplementing geriatric dogs with a nutrition product, with half of the dogs enrolled receiving Fortetropin and the other half of the dogs enrolled receiving a macronutrient-matched placebo.

Natural solutions for agricultural productivity
12/9/20 Nature
“Globally, we have to increase food production by 60%, and in some areas we have to increase by 100%,” says P. V. Vara Prasad, a crop ecophysiologist at Kansas State University, Manhattan.

2020's States Most Vulnerable to Identity Theft & Fraud
12/9/20 Patch.com
"Interestingly, social security numbers are now considered some kind of secret that only the owner would know," said Eugene Y. Vasserman, PhD, Kansas State University. "They were never meant to be — they were supposed to be used more like user names than passwords. They are short and predictable, and therefore do not make good secrets. The same is true for driver license numbers in many states. They were simply not designed to be used as secret information. Instead of changing the social security number itself, I would suggest changing how it is used and moving away from the assumption that if you know someone's social security number then that means you are that person."

Regional/State

9 months later, K-State student shares long-term effects of coronavirus
12/9/20 KSNT
Kennedy Mounce was a freshman at Kansas State when she first tested positive for coronavirus in March.

Local
K-State's researchers doing impressive work to fight pandemic

12/9/20 The Manhattan Mercury
This week, as the FDA approves the first vaccines for COVID-19, we are proud to highlight some local people who are part of the international science community fighting the disease.

Wednesday, Dec. 9, 2020

National/International

Award-winning AFCPE Members Develop Programming and Research to Strengthen Economic Security in Their Communities
12/8/20 Yahoo! Finance 
Outstanding Research Journal Article of the YearEmily KoochelMichigan State UniversityMelinda Stafford-MarkhamKansas State UniversityDuane CrawfordKansas State University; and Kristy L. ArchuletaUniversity of Georgia"Financial Transparency Scale: Its development and potential uses"

Regional/State

*Local, area students picked for JCRC mentoring program
12/8/20 Salina Post 
The Johnson Cancer Research Center at Kansas State University has selected 22 students to participate in its undergraduate research mentoring and award program.

Local

Former MHS teacher, K-State graduate wins $21K on 'Jeopardy'
12/8/20 Manhattan Mercury 
A former Manhattan High School teacher and K-State graduate competed on recent episodes of “Jeopardy,” taking home $21,000.

Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2020

National/International

Is your advisor prepared for cyber attacks? Here’s what you need to know
12/7/20 CMBC
The FPA launched a certificate program for members last month around cybersecurity. The topic is especially important given the fast pace of business being conducted by advisors, said Martin Seay, FPA president and director of Kansas State University’s personal financial planning program.

Regional/State

Mueting creates online 4-H program
12/7/20 Topeka Capital-Journal 
On an otherwise routine Thursday night in mid-November, about 40 Kansas 4-H members were transported by computer screen to a flour mill and baking lab on the Kansas State University campus.

Local

In Focus 12/7/20
12/7/20 1350 KMAN
On Monday’s edition of In Focus we spoke with Jeff Morris – K-State Marketing & Communications Director.

Monday, Dec. 7, 2020

National/International

Obituary for Kansas covid-19 victim slams anti-maskers who ‘refuse to wear a piece of cloth on their face to protect one another’
12/4/20 Washington Post
Marvin James Farr was born May 23, 1939, in Modoc, Kan. He graduated from Kansas State University in 1968. Following an interest in science, he considered studying to be a mortician, but decided instead to work as a farmer and veterinarian in a small town in western Kansas, his obituary said.

Regional/State

Honoring an icon: Pat Roberts speaks to farmers
12/5/20 Hutchinson News
He majored in journalism at Kansas State University and worked as a reporter for several years. But, he said, he is concerned about the media, except agriculture reporters.

$3,000 reward for information in animal cruelty death of PJ the Cat
12/5/20 WIBW-TV
Veterinarians at Kansas State University performed a necropsy, determining PJ had suffered blunt force trauma to the head prior to his body being cut in half.

Local

*K-State virus experts carry on research roles in global COVID-19 battle
12/6/20 Manhattan Mercury
A pair of virologists from Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine say they are excited by the fast-tracking of COVID-19 vaccines. But as Kansas and its neighbors make plans for distributing those doses, they say the real test will be seeing how it actually works in patients.

Darkness and light: Brimhall, whose work swings between joy and pain, teaches poetry to K-State students
12/6/20 Manhattan Mercury
She graduated from Western Michigan University in 2014 and promptly moved to Manhattan to become Professor Brimhall — teaching creative writing at K-State. When she first moved here, she had no idea it would become her home.

Friday, Dec. 4, 2020

National/International

There’s No Better Time to Clear the Air
11/28/20 The New York Times
Homes in some parts of the country, like the Rocky Mountain West, the Midwest and the Appalachians, have a particularly high risk of radon problems from the underlying geology. But because of quirks in minerals and soils nationwide, “radon is everywhere,” said Bruce Snead, director of the National Radon Program Services at Kansas State University. “The only way to know the level anywhere is to test for it.”

*Cats susceptible to SARS-CoV-2; pigs are not
12/3/20 The Farmer
Kansas State University researchers have found that cats are highly susceptible to the human SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19, but that pigs are not.

Regional/State

*Kansas snow days good for the soul, but the pandemic means fewer of them even after 2020
12/3/20 KSN
“Having those snow days is part of the tradition of being a student, being a teacher,” said Tom Vontz, the director of the Master of Arts in Teaching program at Kansas State University. “Bucking that tradition probably won’t be easy for administrators.”

Local

*K-State now offers voluntary asymptomatic testing for faculty, staff
12/3/20 WIBW
Kansas State University says faculty and staff can now participate in voluntary asymptomatic testing for free at Lafene Health Center through the end of December. 

City to host annual tree lighting ceremony virtually
12/3/20 The Manhattan Mercury
The event will feature Mayor Usha Reddi, K-State President Richard Myers and Flint Hills Breadbasket Executive Director Maribeth Kieffer.

Thursday, Dec. 3, 2020

Regional/State

*$7.12 million research grant renewed for Konza Prairie
12/2/20 KSNT
The Konza Prairie has been a site of grasslands ecological research for the last four decades.

*Pinkall nominated in 63rd Grammy Awards
12/2/20 Great Bend Tribune
Great Bend native Bryan Pinkall, associate professor of music at Kansas State University, performed on the recording as a member of the Kansas City Chorale and was the marketing director for the album’s international release. 

Local

*K-State offering asymptomatic testing for faculty and staff
12/2/20 The Manhattan Mercury
Staff and faculty members at Kansas State University can now receive asymptomatic COVID-19 tests at no cost through Lafene Health Center.

Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020

National/International

Best Pet-Friendly Universities in the USA
11/25/20 helloBark!  
The pet policy for the residence halls at Kansas State University has allowed for a larger variety of animals than most colleges and universities for a long time. The policy was developed years ago and expertise from K-State’s College of Veterinary Medicine was used to help determine animals that were appropriate for the confines of a residence hall room.

Regional/State

KC metro saw uncontrolled COVID-19 spread in last 3 months. Here’s where we are now
12/1/20 Kansas City Star
As the number of cases continued to surge, several area school districts decided to move classes online after the Thanksgiving holiday. The University of Missouri-Kansas City, University of Missouri-Columbia, University of Kansas and Kansas State University also switched to virtual learning.

Local 

*Hill’s Partners with KSU for Pet Health and Nutrition Center
12/1/20 WIBW
Hill’s Pet Nutrition has announced a new project as a part of their partnership with Kansas State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine. The school’s Veterinary Health Center will be receiving a major addition: The Hill’s Pet Health and Nutrition Center.

Tuesday, Dec. 1, 2020

National/International

Global Collaboration Is Unlocking Wheat's Genetic Potential
11/30/20 Growing America 
In a paper published Nov. 25, in Nature, Kansas State University researchers, in collaboration with the international 10+ Genome Project led by the University of Saskatchewan, have announced the complete genome sequencing of 15 wheat varieties representing breeding programs around the world - an invaluable resource to improve global wheat production.

Regional/State

K-State Expert Touts Food Safety Resource
11/30/20 KSAL-AM
That’s one reason why Kansas State University food safety specialist Karen Blakeslee keeps an eye on a program from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration that helps consumers better understand genetically engineered foods, commonly called GMOs.

Winter is prime time for wildfires
11/30/20 The Kansan
Dry land, low humidity and high winds are a triple threat when it comes to creating conditions in which wildfires thrive, according to Christopher Redmond, a Kansas State University meteorologist. And he said those risk factors can be common this time of year.

Local

TAKE A LOOK: COVID-19 in Riley County by the numbers on Nov. 30
11/30/20 Kansas State Collegian 
Riley County reported a 16 percent positivity rate for the week of Nov. 15, a slight decrease from the previous week. The most recent report from Kansas State showed an on-campus positivity rate below five percent.