There can be no doubt that without Kansas State University's presence, the state of Kansas would be a much different place. Look no further than agriculture. The people technology ideas emerging from this campus in Manhattan resonates statewide. The Kansas flicker podcast gets a taste of this phenomenon with the help of Richard glutton president of tsu, welcome.
Well, thank you. It's a pleasure to be here today. Thanks for joining us,
in this lovely environment on a cold day, but we're inside fortunately.
And we're having ice cream. It's all good.
We did have ice cream, and maybe we'll have some more. So President when you've been at the University for about a year, I think that work. And how's it going so far?
So far? So good. It's been, it's been a really fast year, but a lot of great things happening at the university largest economic development announcement in our history, the largest gift that was given from Corporation towards Solana campus, the largest fundraising year, and we got a big 12 championship in football. And both the KU men and women lost to Kansas State. So it's all good at the moment.
Yeah. Oh, the KU thing. So my wife and I went to the K U. K, State men's basketball game, under these specific orders that we could not wear purple to the game. So we just put something over the top of it.
These are bad orders, you need to check out whatever told you to do that. Yeah. All right.
So this is obviously a land grant university was created for a purpose Can you spell out for people less familiar with K State, what a land grant university is.
So I think the most simple definition of the land grant university, it's the university for the people, for the people of the state. So Kansas State University is the university for Kansans first, which means that we need to do research and teaching and Extension and Outreach and Engagement for the benefit of the state that has relevance to the state needs in the state opportunities. And what makes us different from any other university here in Kansas, is that we're present every single day improving lives, and changing communities in all 105 counties. That's the land grant university research, teaching, and engagement extension.
And the extension service gets you into those 105 counties. It is part of it.
It's the relationship with our counties that lets us know what's important from a state perspective. And it also enables us to be able to send the talent pipeline or students to these communities that need them for jobs. But it's also about making sure that new technologies are implemented in our state, that's quite often done through our Cooperative Extension network.
So the status of land grant status was established in the 1800s
of Abraham Lincoln's 1852. Lincoln, establish the land grant mission and system. And again, it's about research, teaching and extension and different states were given land for that purpose to be able to help support the state and we are the first number one foam finger Operational Land Grant in America.
So when they decided to have land grant universities, one of them had to be first in terms of being up and running. And it was case
they that was us, I think I was stayed in Kansas State, there's always a challenge about who was first, they might have been first to be able to get, you know, enacted, but we were the first operational running land grant
Institute, take that Iowa. So things change, you know, universities. And so part of your task I take it is to create a next generation land grant institution, you want to talk about that?
Yeah. So I think the fundamental elements of the foundation of a land grant still remains the same research, teaching, extension and engagement for the people to Kansas first. However, in the last 150 or so years, things have changed. So we're asking questions about students and about research, and about engagement. So as an example, on the student side, the student of today is a student that comes nine months a year for four or five or six years to get a four year degree. Well, what about being open 12 months a year that might help with the student affordability challenge that we have? What about the 45 year old that works for Cargill, that would like to elevate their career in data analytics that had a K State degree 20 years ago, and data analytics wasn't invented. So we're asking questions about the opportunity rather than 20,000 students 2.8 million, which the population of our state could be our students, what about credentials? What about certificates? That they could help elevate their career or improve their life from a research perspective? It's about driving the economic engine. How can we create jobs? How can we spur research innovation that attracts industry to want to come so that we have more jobs in the state and keep more students in the state relative to extension, and engagement? Who are the partners of today? And who Do the partners need to be tomorrow? So as an example, healthcare, it's a big issue. And through our Cooperative Extension network, we do less healthcare and more of other things. Why can't we listen to and be relevant to the needs of tomorrow? Why can't we find new partnerships so that we can offer health care all over this entire state?
So as part of this, I believe you've been touring the state a half, partly to introduce yourself to people that partly to listen. And so what are some of the things you heard about? What what people want to see out of KSU.
So this year, we'll be in 72 of 105 counties. Just this week, we were in Wichita. And really, it's about three things. It's about celebrating the partnerships that we already have in place. It's about thinking about new partnerships that could be created. And it's also about selling the amazing student experience that we have at Kansas State, to prospective parents, and students that may want to go into higher education. But you're building relationships with people 95% of success in higher education, is building relationships and establishing trust, when you go to them. You're establishing relationships and building trust.
Yeah, that's important. And practically everything is important in journalism as well. So well, let's do the fundamental journalism questions. Why are you doing this?
Yeah, so it's, again, it's to be able to build on these partnerships, it's to be able to understand how we can be most relevant to the needs of Kansas. And so as an example, one of the things that we're learning is that we have changing demographics in the state. While the population is not growing very fast, a subset of the population, which is the Hispanic population, especially in the West, is growing very rapidly. So as a land grant institution, the University for the people, we need to adapt to changing demographics. And what we're learning is for those first generation, because 80% of them are first generation, Hispanic students, we need to think differently about recruiting and supporting these students. So as an example, they may not want to come to Manhattan, Kansas, for the first couple of years in their college career, could we develop a partnership with a community college in that region, maybe help them with the instruction in some way through our research and extension network or through virtual online learning, and then have the opportunity to be able to help grow them so that they might want to come to Manhattan, to be able to finish out their career, part
of what you're talking about is what all universities ought to be doing right about now, if you have a declining population of college age people, but examining how, how and what you're doing.
So declining enrollment is a big issue and challenge for all land grants. And in Kansas State, it's been our biggest challenge over the last eight years. So we have to sell the incredible student experience, we have to adapt and think differently about changing demographics. And we need to have a balance of in state students, and out of state students in order to be able to fulfill the operational needs of the university. That's what we're working on really hard
today. And when you think about the College of Agriculture, specifically, the breadth of the curriculum, doesn't mean that you have to have a well worn pair of cowboy boots for some real skills in hurling hate square hay bales around, you know, there's explain that, you know,
you could be an engineer that works on drone technology or sensing technology and fields. You could be a geologist, that's working on irrigation systems, because water, of course, is an incredibly important issue in the state. Maybe the most important issue, you know, I think from an agriculture perspective, it is the but no water,
life evaporates, and it's gone.
No water, no plants, no plants, no animals, no plants, no animals, no humans. That's right. We have to work on that water issue. But also, there's a role in play for journalism. You know, I think one of our biggest challenges is Americans don't know where their food comes from. And if they don't know where their food comes from, it's difficult to be able to justify the importance of extension. And the importance of investing in research.
Comes from Brown Swiss cows, right?
Of course it does. Yeah,
let's not let's That's incorrect. That's incorrect. Oh, as my son
drinks, the chocolate milk, I drink the white milk. Okay.
Well, just think about agriculture going forward. workforce issues, you say student enrollment, but part of that is about workforce to people to go out there and do some of this work, the drought, the water. I'm curious about one of the things what about international student enrollment? at K State, there's always been a presence of international students, and particularly, you know, ag development and so forth. But some of those people will come to school here and go back to Africa, wherever. But what about having more of those people actually stay in Kansas?
Yeah. So because we're such a university that focuses on agriculture and In engineering, which are both global issues, we need to have international students to be able to give us that international perspective. Because what's needed in America is different than what's needed all over the world. I think almost all universities in America have struggled during COVID With lessening amounts of international students. We have for Feed the Future labs which focus on internationalization and bringing a lot of these students in, but our numbers have dropped. And we need to have a concerted effort to enhancers. Number one,
COVID was a big curveball to everybody. COVID had a huge we are sitting in call Hall. There's an ice cream place facility here, but you could also call it a dairy bar Dairy Bar. I didn't know if that was the I know, that was a terminology a long time ago. I didn't know it was still a creamery.
Yeah. That's a place it's okay. Or they're
out in the milk barn. You know, I grew up drinking milk out of a pickle jar that we walked in from the dairy barn. So it was still warm. Probably not pasteurized. Of course not. It was strangely one thick piece of paper. I
bet you have a great immune system.
I do. I've never broken a bone either. Yeah, so I can remember drinking homogenized, pasteurized milk for the first time I thought somebody had polluted it. So anyway, so surrounded, there's cheese, there's meat, there's, there's ice cream, there's flour, all these things come from K State.
They do. And I think one of the things that we like to do in a way to be able to try to help educate others about the importance of agriculture is make those finished products here and distribute those products so that people can enjoy them. And then it gives people an opportunity to understand that, you know, this ice cream came came from a cow. Yeah, and that flower comes from weakness, a lot of things that have to happen on the growing side of things on the post processing side of things. And then on the retail side of things in order to
make us so touch on the importance of experiential learning. Because I think this is a big deal. That's what we're kind of talking about here. The milling science, or the ASI, animal science people out there, or the people milking 300 cows.
So if I had my way, and I'm moving in that direction, I would have every single student that has some kind of a hands on learning experience, whether it's an internship, whether it's an international experience, or whether it's an undergraduate research program, having that hands on experience, helps enable them understand what they actually want to be in life. But it also gives them a great jump up in the job market when they're competing for jobs right out of the chute.
Okay, real quickly, we have a lightning round questions here. So you may have answered this on a plane or chocolate milk. I think you said please gotta be playing maybe 2% or 2%. What about whole milk? What's wrong with that?
So for me whole milk is a little too heavy. I need the 2% and plus I'm trying to, you know, be fit and trim. Yeah, write it down. Just
love it with whole milk and real milk.
The rest of it's fake after I just had two scoops of delicious.
So your favorite ice cream.
So my favorite ice cream is actually an ice cream called Sherry brick road. You can't find it here.
You can change that though.
I'm working on. Okay, so charity brick road was an ice cream that was created for me. at NC State University. It was the Dean's ice cream. And it included four ingredients. Chocolate, chocolate, marshmallows, and cherries. And so the two chocolates were my wife and daughters. My son was marshmallow. I was cherries. And the idea was he was a chocolate ice cream with chocolate mrics. And it was a Marshmallow Swirl and Michigan cherries. And it was cold. So we used to say follow the cherry brick road following the cherry.
Was it a good seller though? Did other people like it? It was did you end up with like 400 pounds? No, it
was the number two seller at NC State. And in addition to that, it was off. There were five flavors that were sold through supermarkets. And it was one of the five flavors that were
sold. Okay, so I'm impressed maybe that PhD Did did you? Well, they're
either the PhD or just a lot of experience and from great food.
Just luck. Okay, so in addition to eating ice cream, we're sitting in call Hall for a reason. Kansas State raise $75 million. You guys have qualified for some state aid. You're going to do some redevelopment in this area of campus. Will you please explain what your vision is there.
So we're really proud that Kent State University stepped up to a challenge offered by the state. So there was a three to one challenge where if we could raise three times the money philanthropically. The state would give us one part. So we our challenge was to raise $75 million in four months, that that's about 13 years of fundraising for a college. They raised $82 million in four months. It's just amazing how the industry stepped up to be able to support this effort.
The match is a big deal. The match is a big
deal. Yeah. And I think it told us that it told the state how important agriculture is this is going to involve actually, eight different buildings, a couple of buildings will come down because they can't be renovated and modernized. A couple of buildings will be renovated call Hall as an example. And wherever Hall will be renovated and modernized. And then we'll also have new buildings as well. We'll have a new livestock arena. We'll have two new agronomy buildings. And then right in between call and river Hall, we're going to have a building that integrates food science, animal science, agronomy, green science, milling, bakery, because we are number one in the world when it comes to green science, milling and bakery. But we don't have the current building Shellenberger hall that supports it, that building comes down, this new building comes in, and we accelerate what we consider the timeline. A few years, maybe timeline for that is by December 2026, is our goal. So first out of the ground will be the two new agronomy buildings will break ground this spring. And then probably later this fall, we're working on the livestock arena. And
part of what you're talking about there is interdisciplinary academics, whether it's research or instruction, right, so it's all
about bringing different disciplines together, to be able to solve the grand global challenges of agriculture. So let's take water as an example. You need to have agronomists you need to have soil scientists, you need to have geologists you might need to have plant sciences, all of these different disciplines can't solve the challenges alone. We all need to work together at other universities. I've been to Purdue and NC State when you bring all these disciplines together, we can solve bigger problems, solve them faster, get more research support, and at the end of the day, create opportunities for growers as sort of breaking
down silos. Great, not entirely a joke there. But yeah, yes. So before we before we depart from the podcast here, I wanted to talk to talk about the collaboration, the economic development and the work with industry. What was going on here at K State is going to directly involve industry. And part of that is fundraising but but part of it is trying to meet their needs as well.
So we have an economic prosperity plan that's been developed at K State, as all of the other Kansas Board of Regents, universities have also had to create. Ours seeks to be able to create 3000 jobs and add $3 billion to the economy. And so it's about partnering with industry, it's about attracting industry to the state. It's about creating that talent pipeline that's so vitally important to them. It's about research collaborations. It's about education, and training. The biggest economic announcement in our history was Scorpion biologics. It's a $650 million investment in a human vaccine manufacturing plant right here near Manhattan. It's going to employ over 500 people and an average starting salary of $80,000. That's twice the average in Manhattan to it's a tremendous economic boost. Universities can do work like that. And K State is interested in developing those private public partnerships and industry engagement, feel great jobs for students and bring more jobs to the state.
Well, I want to thank you for sitting down in this beautiful ice cream Plaza here
always gonna be at the Creamery or dairy barn. Okay. CREAMER. When I said born, it's bar, Dairy Bar.
All right. President Richard Linton, thank you so much for helping us learn a little bit more about case study. Happy to be