Kansas State University

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Kansas State University is scaling back this year’s budget by millions of dollars after about 1,000 fewer students enrolled this fall compared to the previous year, creating a budget crunch.

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A couple from northern Kansas have donated 2,300 acres (930.8 hectares) of farmland for Kansas State University to develop a research farm to study sustainable agricultural practices.

The Salina Journal reports that Alton residents Harold and Olympia Lonsinger's donation will be dedicated at a ceremony Wednesday.

Harold Lonsinger graduated from the university in 1956 with a degree in mechanical engineering. He says he hopes the university's research will help protect and preserve natural resources.

Sean Sandefur / KMUW/File Photo

Kansas State University is expanding drone flight training at its Salina campus to include flying after dark.

Flying an unmanned aircraft system (UAS), or drone, after the sun sets is against the law.

So it took a waiver from the Federal Aviation Administration to allow K-State to add night flight training for research and to its curriculum at the Polytechnic Campus.

Kansas State University

A Chinese scientist has been convicted of conspiring to steal trade secrets by smuggling rice seeds from a Kansas bioscience facility.

Weiqiang Zhang was a rice breeder for Ventria Bioscience in Junction City. The company had genetically programmed rice to make several different human proteins, which can be extracted for use in medicine and therapy. Ventria CEO Scott Deeter says its valuable technology.

“We’ve invested in our company about $85 million," Deeter says. "Now, we primarily use rice, but it also could be used in corn, or sorghum or barley.”

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Richard Myers, a retired four-star Air Force general and former Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, will be Kansas State University's president as it wrestles with budget problems and the possibility that students, staff and visitors will be allowed to carry concealed guns into its buildings next year.

The Kansas Board of Regents on Tuesday voted unanimously to promote Myers from interim president, a job he's held since April at the land-grant university in Manhattan, which has about 24,000 students.

Bryan Thompson / Heartland Health Monitor

About 60 people showed up for a public forum at Kansas State University yesterday on how best to implement a new state law that will allow concealed carry of handguns on university campuses in Kansas next July.

Kansas lawmakers — at least the majority of incumbents — think college campuses will be safer starting next July. That’s when a law they approved will allow people to carry concealed handguns on Kansas Board of Regents campuses.

Universities in Kansas have been taking steps to absorb state funding cuts. As Stephen Koranda reports, the University of Kansas and Kansas State University are adopting different approaches.

KU announced this week that there would be positions left unfilled and targeted budget cuts, including some significant reductions to certain programs. At K-State, the strategy is a little different: Spokesperson Jeff Morris says K-State officials gave all departments an equal cut of just under 4 percent.

Kansas State University

Kansas State University has been awarded a federal grant to help get more eligible children enrolled in Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program, or CHIP. The “Connecting Kids to Coverage” grant is almost a million dollars.

K-State plans to target Latino and immigrant children in four rural counties in the state. They’ll use bilingual ambassadors to help enroll kids at schools and health centers.

The Kansas grant is part of $32 million provided through a recently enacted bill to reauthorize Medicaid and CHIP.

Stephen Koranda / KPR

Gov. Sam Brownback is cutting most state agencies 4 percent to balance the Kansas budget for next year.

Lawmakers approved an unbalanced budget that required the governor to make almost $100 million in spending reductions to comply with the state Constitution. Brownback’s budget director, Shawn Sullivan, says the governor exempted some agencies and K-12 schools.

Stephen Koranda / KPR/File photo

Gov. Sam Brownback is considering a budget plan that requires him to make spending cuts. Brownback says he has not yet decided if he’ll veto a provision in the budget affecting the University of Kansas and Kansas State University. As KPR’s Stephen Koranda reports, the budget item says spending cuts should hit those schools harder than other universities.

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