Building for our future
The Kansas State University College of Agriculture is one of the leading agriculture colleges in the nation. Our Department of Plant Pathology and its doctoral program rank first in the nation. Our Department of Grain Science and Industry is the only program that offers bachelor of science degrees in bakery, milling and feed science. We are also a leader in research and rank fifth in the nation for National Institute of Food and Agriculture Competitive Grant funding among 106 land-grant institutions.
Companies that remain stagnant and do not plan for the future do not survive. The same is true for our university and our college. To remain competitive — while continuing to attract top faculty and students and to lead the nation in research — we must continue to improve our facilities.
The reality: We are losing research dollars because we do not have the space and equipment to conduct certain studies. We are conducting 21st century research in aging facilities and have reached the threshold of our capabilities. We are losing existing faculty to other universities because we cannot offer them space and funding. We are losing students to programs that may lack the expertise we offer, but recruit using new facilities and technology. Just as K-State’s football program has updated its space to recruit top athletes, we must also update our facilities to recruit the best minds and the next generation of agriculturists.
The requirements for modern lab spaces to accommodate molecular and other research, and to train the future workforce, cannot be met by the current space, even if we renovate it.
-John Ruberson, entomology department head
Moving into the 21st century
The College of Agriculture hired two firms, one architectural and one engineering, to identify the quantity and quality of the existing space and what we need in the future.
A four-phase master plan for the college was developed and will eventually include at least two new buildings, new greenhouses and remodeling much of our remaining space.