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K-State Today

April 6, 2022

Explore! offers K-State experiences for high school students

Submitted by Sara Luly

“College is more than just classes” was the motto of Explore!, an event that recently brought high school students to Manhattan for a day of activities, tours and hands-on learning. Programs such as Kansas Kids GEAR-UP and TRIO UMBS, which help students plan and prepare for their post-graduation goals, brought students from across Kansas and Missouri to participate in the March 5 collaborative event.

During the day students moved in small groups through the Hale Library as they explored leadership, research and engagement opportunities. Students toured the Sutherland Innovation Lab where they saw 3D printers in action, took immersive virtual tours of far-away places on the Liquid Galaxy display and visited the sound studio. Afterward they moved to a research breakout session and heard about research opportunities available in STEM, humanities and the social sciences and saw examples of current student work. Finally, students participated in an interactive brainstorming session. Working in small teams they identified a common passion and envisioned how they could connect that passion with learning and extracurriculars at college.

In addition to these sessions, students heard from current K-Staters through a “day-in-the-life” round table and participated in discussions about career preparation with Jared Meitler, associate director of the Career Center. The day concluded with a tour of the Kansas State University Manhattan campus.

Several university units collaborated on this event including two TRIO Programs: McNair Scholars and Educational Support Services. Other units involved included the K-State Office for the Advancement of Women in Science and Engineering; the Chapman Center for Rural Studies; the Office of Undergraduate Research & Creative Inquiry; the primary texts certificate program; and the University Honors Program.

Funding for the event was made possible by a CASE grant from the Office of Recruitment and Admissions as well as financial contributions from individual units. The event organizers wish to thank Hale Library for hosting the event, as well as the undergraduate volunteers and alumni who participated in the roundtable, including Chester Hubbard, Ty Ratzlaff, Nikela Reed and Courage Wortman.